Science Projects for Kids: Soil Experiments

Dirt Discovery

Dirt Discovery is a science project that teaches kids to examine layers of soil.
Dirt Discovery is a science project that teaches kids to examine layers of soil.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Dirt Discovery is a science project that teaches kids about soil composition. There's more to dirt than you think! Find out what it's made of.

What You'll Need:

  • Waterproof table covering
  • Jar with lid
  • Spoon
  • Dirt
  • Pitcher of water
  • Paper towels
  • Magnifying glass

How to Conduct the Dirt Discovery Science Project:Step 1: Cover your work surface. Fill a jar halfway with dirt. Add water nearly to the top of the jar. Put the lid on, and tighten it securely.

Step 2: Shake the jar vigorously for a half a minute, and then set it down. Let the jar stand until the dirt and water settle. The soil will settle into layers.

Step 3: Observe the layers in the jar, and see what you can tell about them. How many layers are there? Which layer is made of the biggest particles? Which is made of the smallest? Can you guess why?

Step 4: To further examine the different layers and what they are made of, you can sort out the soil materials and examine them. Use a spoon to skim off the objects floating in the water. Place them on a paper towel.

Step 5: Then carefully pour off the water on the top and scoop out the grains of the next level onto another paper towel. Do the same if there is another level.

Step 6: After each layer has been placed onto towels, they can be examined with the magnifying glass. What else can you tell about the different layers after further examination?

Step 7: You can also do this experiment with dirt you have collected from different areas and compare your findings. Draw pictures of each jar full of soil after you have shaken it and the dirt has settled to make picture comparisons.

Who Needs Dirt? Your kids might be asking this question after you teach them how to grow a sweet potato plant in nothing but water. Read about this science project on the next page of science projects for kids: soil experiments.

Looking for more science projects to do with your kids? Try: