How do Volcanoes form? How do they impact our lives?
This activity has benefited from input from faculty educators beyond the author through a review and suggestion process.
This review took place as a part of a faculty professional development workshop where groups of faculty reviewed each others' activities and offered feedback and ideas for improvements. To learn more about the process On the Cutting Edge uses for activity review, see http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/review.html.
This page first made public: Nov 18, 2011
Skills and concepts that students must have mastered
How the activity is situated in the course
As a lab experience students will perform soil testing to look at different volcanic soil components, since we are planning a community gardening project.
Content/concepts goals for this activity
Sub goal: Chemical composition using soil test kit.
Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity
- Organizing the data collected and types of minerals present in the soil around these volcanoes.
- Land succession- why is this location so barren after so many years when compared to other volcanoes like Mount St.Helen's in Washington? Find the cause and effect of this scenario.
Other skills goals for this activity
- Observing the soil
- Predicting what will happen when the soil settles
- Identifying the relationship between particle size and soil texture
- Recording the scientific data
- Comparing predictions
Description of the activity/assignment
- Review the words particle, sand, silt, clay, texture.
- Re-read the part of The Soil Explorers where some students discover that the red and brown soils feel different.
- Have the students give reasons why soils might feel different.
- Introduce the fact that the tiny pieces of soil, called particles, are really different sizes.
- Show the particle relative size chart and introduce the terms sand, silt , and clay.
- Have the students feel samples of sand, clay, and moist flour and describe how each feels.
- Discuss that differing amounts of sand, silt, and clay in soil affects soil texture– sticky, sandy soil is gritty and rough, silty soil feels soft and smooth.
- Tell the students that they will now have a chance to examine the particle sizes in their own soil samples.
- Also discuss about how sand, silt and clay effect the growing conditions(plant succession) in an area.
- Collect the data from various places and have students to compare and make predictions about the plant/animal succession in the reservation.
Determining whether students have met the goals
- Have students compare their predictions with their actual results. How are they similar? How are they different?
- Show the shake jars from different volcanic areas
- Look at plant succession at different areas.
Students has to deduce conclusions about why one volcanic area has lot of growing things in 30 years vs nothing much growing in 1000 years, (for example, Mount St. Helen's with Sunset Crater in Arizona).
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