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Introduction to Soil

kit #1101

In this introductory kit, students perform four activities during which they observe several different earth materials with a magnifying lens and describe what they see. Their observations, including metric measurements, are used to help them understand how these materials are classified and identified. Students then apply the skills and understanding developed in the first activity to observe and describe soil samples completely enough to be identified by someone else. These observations and descriptions form the basis for agreeing upon a definition for soil.


Lab-Aids kit #1102 is a companion kit that builds upon and extends students' understanding of soil.

  • One way to gather data is through direct observation. Accurate and complete observations are important for making conclusions about the natural world
  • Soil consists of weathered rocks and decomposed organic material from dead plants, animals, and bacteria

Content List in Introduction to Soil is as follows:

Quantity Description
24 Cups, 1/2 oz. plastic
12 Magnifying lenses
12 15-cm metric rulers
6 Sieves
6 Granite, Samples
1 Silt, 8 oz. bottle
1 Sand, 8 oz. bottle
1 Gravel, I8 oz. bottle
1 Peat moss, 8 oz. bottle
1 Soil A, 16 oz. bottle
1 Soil B, 16 oz. bottle
1 Plastic teaspoon
28 Student Worksheet and Guides: How to Measure Length Using a Metric Ruler
28 Student Worksheet and Guides: Introduction to Soil
1 Teacher’s Guide with MSDS
Number of students
Number of groups
Maximum 6 groups per period
Number of classes
unlimited (no consumable materials)

To complete this kit requires three to four ~50-minute class periods.

Title Item # Price Quantity
Introduction to Soil 1101 $154.45
ADD A GROUP for Introduction to Soil 1101EL $19.50
Soil Composition and Structure 1102 $175.05