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Erase It! Soil Pollution

What’s the solution to soil pollution? From where does it come? Find out what you can do to preserve and protect the Earth.

  • Grade 3
    Grade 4
    Grade 5
  • 60 to 90 Minutes
  • Directions

    1. Soil pollution is all around! Toxic pesticides are spread on lawns and farms. Industries empty sludge and pollutants into the air, soil, and water. Atomic, toxic, and hazardous waste is dumped into landfills. Ask students why soil pollution is such a critical worldwide issue.
    2. Students research and brainstorm ways to erase soil pollution, locally and globally. Interview experts including farmers and environmental specialists. Recycling, not using harsh chemicals on plants, and controlling runoff on hillsides are just some of the ways to limit soil pollution. Students list all of their ideas with Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils on white paper. To make corrections, just erase!
    3. Students choose one solution---something you feel strongly about and can do to help reduce soil pollution. Draw a vivid scene and clearly worded poster with Crayola® Erasable Colored Pencils. Show how we all can care for the environment.
    4. Use the erasers to create special effects, such as windows in a factory. Take color away to create striking words or a large NO symbol. Remove color and replace it with another. Add texture and shading to the drawing by erasing, too.
    5. Hang the poster where others can see--and heed--your urgent message! We only have one Earth!
  • Standards

    LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.

    LA: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.

    LA: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.

    LA: Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, including those that signal contrast, addition, and other logical relationships.

    SCI: Ask questions about the natural and human-built worlds.

    SCI: Construct drawings or diagrams as representations of events or systems.

    SCI: Offer causal explanations appropriate to level of knowledge.

    SS: Explore causes, consequences, and possible solutions to persistent, contemporary, and emerging global issues, such as pollution and endangered species.

    VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.

    VA: Select and use the qualities of structures and functions of art to improve communication of ideas.

  • Adaptations

    Encourage students to investigate the type of soil found in their local community by bringing in back yard samples and analyzing the samples. Compare and contrast samples from different areas of the community. What do the differences mean? Which soil is best for growing crops, herbs, etc.?

    Research the types of soil different countries are dealing with. What solutions are the governments implementing to clean up polluted soil? What steps are they taking to keep soil from becoming polluted?

    After researching steps take to clean up polluted soil, students brainstorm steps they can take as young citizens to keep their neighborhoods from becoming polluted. Students generate a set of steps towards a cleaner community and post these in the classroom.

    What is recycling? Does the local community have a recycling plan? Ask a local community worker to speak with the class about their community's action plan for recycling. Prior to the visit, students generate questions for the guest. After the meeting, students post learning to a class blog.


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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