Saturday, February 25, 2012

Getting Dirty

I had such a great, chill Saturday.  I went to go see Act of Valor tonight with Mark.  So good!  The movie really portrayed the awesome sacrifice of our Navy Seals and all Sailors, Soldiers, Airman and Marines.  You should definitely check it out.

I know it might seem like I only teach math, I seem to blog about it an awful lot! I love teaching Science though. It's so hands on and fun.  Well, if it's taught the right way.  It makes me sad to hear about those schools that just do science out of a book.  They have great test scores but how boring! 

Anyway, off the soapbox.  We use the ECA Kits in our district, and the third grade Soil Kit is by far my favorite.  Yeah, soil...doesn't sound that great, but the kids love getting dirty! Elisabeth at Twins, Teaching and Tacos has made an awesome Soil Unit Supplement to the kits.  It has all of the observation sheets and so much more.  Even if you don't get the kits, it is something you can totally do on your own. All you need is some clay, sand and humus! 

Well we, started off learning about what makes up soil.  We dug up some dirt outside of our classroom.  We took it inside starting "rooting" through it. Get it rooting... 

Well, this is the first year I haven't just used potting soil.  So I didn't think about what would be in this soil. Yep. Bugs. Worms. Ants. Roly Polys. The kiddos thought it was the coolest thing ever.  

Then we started talking about the different types of soil, sand, clay and humus.  How they look, feel, smell, and sound. 

On another day, we added water to the soil samples. 

This would be my first group who came back to add water.  Let's just say it got realll messy. The students mixed it up with their fingers and tried rolling each type in a ball.  I forgot to take pictures at the end. (P.S. That is Pandora playing on the Smartboard. I am LOVING that it isn't blocked anymore.  Classical Music and Disney Stars at my fingertips!)

We also talked all about the different layers of soil and how soil is made.  So we were going to make compost piles. We collected vegetable and fruit scraps. Yuck.  I have everything set up. I go to pull out my containers I always use to make the compost. Yep, can't find them. Great. Then I go to get the worms out of the Fridge in the Workroom. Not there.  So no longer do we just have a Lunch Bandit (I refuse to leave my Lean Cuisines in there after mine got stolen on conference day), but also someone likes to take worms.  So we did not make compost on Friday. Maybe we will dig up some worms... 

On Friday Afternoon, we did this fabulous Pinterest inspired snack.  The original pin is here.  

We switched it up just a tad. 

Topsoil-Crushed Oreos to show the darker color with all the humus. You have to include the gummy worm too!
Subsoil-Multigrain Cheerios so show larger grains with a lighter color
Bedrock-Marshmallows- I wanted to use chocolate rocks but I couldn't find any!

The kids loved it.  It was a great review of the three layers of soil from earlier in the week.  I loved the way it showed that the layers don't just stop, and start. They intermingle and mix in a little where they meet. 

We had such a great time this week starting out our soil unit!  We actually got a lot farther in the unit than I had originally planned.  How awesome is that?  This post ended up being much longer than planned. I hope you stuck it out.  

Well, my eyes are getting sleepy, so it's time to head to bed.  Be sure to check out my brand spanking new Teacher Notebook Store! :)

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