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Earth Science Right Outside Your Door

By: Courtney Newman

Science was always one of my favorite topics to study in school.  I loved how applicable it is to our lives, and how much it explained why things happen.  It could be hard to comprehend at times, but the challenge was always worthwhile. Science gave the answers to everything!  I foster fond memories of learning about science as a homeschooled student, especially in elementary and middle school. Those younger levels are filled with simple intrigue, fun, and pressure-free research.  Whether the topic involved basic botany, zoology, astronomy, biology, or earth science, the introductory levels rely on wonder, exploration, and enjoyable activities and experiments.  

Specifically, Earth science, also known as geoscience, is a wonderful way to learn about the very world we live in, and a good way to explore the “why” behind what we experience in daily life.  Earth science is an examination of our world and its natural processes, such as weather, energy absorption from the sun, ocean studies, climate earth science, and even about the laws that govern everything within the earth with physical science experiments.  This is important because it analyzes what has happened so far in earth’s history, and evaluates how sustainable the planet’s resources are for the future. In doing so, earth science is continually looking for better options for a healthier planet. Earth scientists play a key role in reviewing the changes caused by human activity and working on solutions to resolve any issues.

 

10 Hands-On Earth Science Projects

To share the enjoyment of earth science with your kids, here are 10 of our favorite simple science experiments!  These projects help make earth study an easy science for kids, thanks to the fun, hands-on approach for teaching the relevance of earth science.  From an exploding volcano to a tornado in a jar, your children are bound to find something they love in this list. As a bonus, these can all be easily done either in your yard or at the park!

Rocks & Minerals: A Fun Testing Experiment for Kids. If your children have ever dug rocks from their pockets to ask you what kind of rock it is, then this experiment is for them!  This activity doesn’t just test the density of a rock, but rather for the specific type of rock thanks to the acid present in white distilled vinegar. 

LEGO Construction Paper Sun Prints Outdoor STEM Activity. This is a super fun idea for your LEGO-loving kids! This project combines the fun of LEGOs with the thinking skills of STEM to create solar prints.  It can even serve as an art project!

Simple Soil Science. Sometimes, you just need to take the kids outside for some quality time in the dirt.  As much as we may not like playing in dirt so much, children love the dirt!  This activity is perfect for combining play with a bit of science.

Erosion Experiment. You can’t study earth science without studying erosion!  For this experiment, you’ll just need some soil, water, a straw, and ice.

DIY Seed Bombs. This is such a fun way to combine planting seeds with earth science!  Try making your own seed bombs either to plant yourself, or to give away as gifts.  Either way, it’s a great reminder that flowers and the earth as a whole go hand-in-hand.

How to Make a Barometer. Wind and air pressure are very common topics in earth science, so why not make a barometer yourself?  This project is super simple and uses household items!

Tornado in a Jar. This is a fantastic way to simulate tornados for your homeschoolers!  The project is a perfect complement to a weather or earth science study.

Inside Out Playdough Earth. Many of us love modeling objects with Playdough, so why not utilize it in an earth study?  With this project, your kids can learn more about the layers of the earth.

3 Water Cycle Experiments. Most parents remember learning about the water cycle as kids, but it usually just included facts and pictures, which is kind of boring.  I love that these experiments bring it alive and make it so much more fun!

Easy Erupting Volcano for Kids. What is an earth science study without an erupting volcano?  Every child should have the exciting chance to make a volcano for science at some point!  A study of earth science seems like the perfect opportunity.

 

10 Resources for Learning More About Earth Science

Thankfully, since earth science is one of the most practical and relevant branches of science, there are numerous online educational resources available.  Whether you are looking for an earth science lab, independent projects, or environmental science courses, you are likely to find what you need. Specifically, many trailblazing homeschoolers have found exciting ways to teach their children about earth science, oftentimes for all learning styles.  We’ve found ten great resources to get you started!

Earth Science Lessons and Experiments for Kids

Teaching Your Kids About the Earth’s Atmosphere

Online Middle School Earth & Science Course

Montessori Inspired Earth Science Activities

Free Interactive Science Lessons & Activities

Pollution Activities for Kids

Earth Science Vocabulary Word Lists

High School Geology Terms

Learn about Dirt with Sediment Jars

Free Science Printable Worksheets

 

A study of earth, at first glance, can seem boring.  After all, not many people find the concept of geology exciting.  However, earth science is about so much more than studying rocks. Environmental earth science explains the weather that we experience, provides our daily forecasts, helps prevent certain natural disasters when possible, or aid in preparation and recovery when inevitable.  Earth science gives construction companies the proper information for building safe developments. Earth science, at its core, is all about the world we live in –and what could be more applicable?

 

We hope these ideas help kick start your journey into earth science with your homeschooled children for an enjoyable and fascinating study!

 

 

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