Student Portal:

Weathering and Erosion

Investigation 3 – Lab

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MINDSET

This Investigation is designed to demonstrate to you that:

  • soil is composed of different types of components,
  • different components of soil are composed of different size particles,
  • differently sized particles of some components are a consequence of different rates of weathering of rocks,
  • these components can be separated according to their size differences, and
  • each component is composed of a range of different sized particles.

BE PREPARED

Student Preparation for the Investigation includes having students gather the following materials. 

Note: The materials are listed in your SDR. They are also listed below for your reference.

  • (1) triple beam balance
  • (1) lab scoop
  • (3) weigh dishes
  • (1) 50ml beaker containing gravel
  • (1) 50ml beaker containing potting soil
  • (1) 50ml beaker containing sand
  • (1) 400 ml beaker
  • (1) square of wire mesh with large openings
  • (1) square of wire mesh with small openings
  • (1) shoebox container
  • (1) hand lens

Direct one student from each lab group to collect the materials listed in their SDRs.

INVESTIGATE

  • You will be conducting two trials in which you investigate the different components of soil.
  • Reflect on the PreLab video as you move through the procedural steps.
  • During the Experiment, every procedural step is important. If one step is skipped, data can become invalid. To help you keep on track, read each step thoroughly, complete the step, then check it off (Read it – Do it – Check it).
  • Complete all of the procedural steps in your SDR.

Note: The procedural steps are listed below for your reference.

 

 Trial 1

  1. In this Trial, you will analyze the appearance of the components of a soil sample.
  2. Use the masking tape and marker to label one of the weigh dishes “gravel.”
    1. Use the triple beam balance to measure the mass of the weighing dish.
    2. Record the mass of the weighing dish in the second column of Table A.
    3. Use the triple beam balance and the weigh dish to measure 10g of gravel.
    4. Enter the mass of the weighing dish and the component in the third column of Table A.
    5. Enter the mass of the component alone in the last column of Table A.
  3. Use the masking tape and marker to label a second weigh dish “organic.”
  4. Repeat steps 2a through 2e for this component. Record your data in Table A.
  5. Use the masking tape and marker to label a third weigh dish “sand.”
  6. Repeat steps 2a through 2e for this component. Record your data in Table A.
  7. Examine each of the three components with the hand lens and then answer the questions.

Trial 2

  1. In this Trial, you will separate three different soil components using two sieves with different-sized openings.
  2. Pour all three soil components from the weigh dishes into the beaker. Stir the mixture with the lab scoop to completely mix the components and to break up any lumps of the organic component.
  3. Place the sieve with the larger openings in the bottom of the container and pour the mixture into the sieve.
  4. Without spilling any of the mixture, shake the sieve back and forth in the container until no more material falls into the container.
  5. Carefully pour the material that did not fall through the sieve into the weighing dish labeled “gravel.”
  6. Carefully pour the material in the container that fell through the sieve back into the beaker.
  7. Place the sieve with the smaller openings in the bottom of the container and pour the mixture from the beaker into the sieve.
  8. Without spilling any of the mixture, shake the sieve back and forth in the container until no more material falls into the container.
  9. Carefully pour the material that did not fall through the sieve into the weighing dish labeled “organic.”
  10. Carefully pour the material in the container that fell through the sieve into the weighing dish labeled “sand.”

 

CLEAN UP

Be sure to clean up your lab bench after finishing the experiments.