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Soil Carbon Cycling Plan
Target Concept:
The students will be able to:
A. Predict and evaluate the ability for soil to sequester carbon.
B. Construct a cause and effect relationship between soil management and climate change.
Driving Questions:
1. What is soil?
2. What role does soil play in the carbon cycling plan?
3. How do people affect the amount of carbon found in the soil?
4. What is the relationship between soil and human needs?
Evidence for Students to Use to form Explanations?
1. Show students how little (therefore important) soil there is on earth (Earth as an apple).
2. Have students investigate what is in soil (dissecting a soil core).
3. Have students investigate how much carbon is leaving the soil (meter readings).
4. Have students demonstrate the carbon cycle (hallway carbon cycle flow chart).
Assessment of Student Progress toward Target Concept
1. Pretest on soil makeup and purpose.
2. Oral and written summaries of their activities: what we did, saw (found), and concluded.
3. Exit cards also listing what students would like to know or still don’t understand.
4. Posttest on soil makeup and purpose.
Lesson Flow
1. Pretest.
2. “Earth as an Apple” demonstration.
3. Investigate a soil core sample to find what is in the soil.
4. Use “exit cards” to demonstrate what they know about soil, and what they don’t know.
5. Use “Hallway Carbon Cycle” activity to show flow of carbon in a plant.
6. Draw the path of a carbon atom in a plant. (Seeds-to-Stems).
7. Use a CO2 gas sensor to monitor the amount of carbon leaving the soil.
Ken Lehman
Bioenergy Institute for Educators

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