Earth Science: Layers of the Earth Hands-On Activity

Last week, I mentioned that we learned a bit about the Solar System in general.  This week we’ve been looking more closely at Earth’s long history.  We’ve been going over the four major eons and looking more closely at what happened in each (Hadean Eon, Archean Eon, Proterozoic Eon, Phanerozoic Eon). At first 4.6-4 billion years ago, the Earth would have been molten. Then as the Earth cooled it went from liquid to solid. Heavier molten iron sank into the core, while lighter rock rose to the surface, cooled and became the crust.  This was the activity we did as we learned about the layers of the Earth.

To get ready for this activity, I made several batches of homemade play dough.

In a pan, place the following ingredients. Cook on the stove top until the dough sticks together in one big clump.

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup salt
  • 1 Tablespoon cream of Tartar
  • 1 Tablespoon oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 drops of vegetable glycerine (optional)
  • dye — We made globs of dough in different colors for the different layers of the Earth. Be sure to add the dye before you start heating it on the stove.
We read through Gail Gibbon’s book Planet Earth/Inside Out.  We talked about how thick each layer was and filled in the worksheet I made for the kids. [I’ll share that at some point soon. We’re still working on things and the packet isn’t quite ready to finish.  If you are working on this right now and would like those pages, just email me or leave a note on our Homeschool Den Facebook and I can send you what I have so far! 🙂 Otherwise, I’ll probably share that within the next couple of weeks.]
PlanetEarth
The inner dark layer represents the solid iron core which is 1500 miles across. Then we added the outer core, the mantle, the crust (oceans/continents).

Layers-of-the-Earth-Activity2

Once it was assembled the kids took a knife and cut it apart.  It’s definitely a visual way to see the layers of the Earth!

 

Layers-of-the-Earth-Activity1

Be sure to check out some of the other activities we have in our 100+ page Earth Science unit!

Layers of the Earth interactive notebook page Layers of the Earth interactive notebook page- Earth Science UnitThis is such a great activity for any age! We first did this about four years ago, but the kids enjoyed it as much at this age as they did when they were 2, 4 and 6!

There is another option for taking notes and discussing the Layers of the Earth — an interactive notebook activity that has recently been added to the packet:

Layers of the Earth - Interactive Notebook ActivityBe sure to find out more about our 150+ page Earth Science Unit here:

Earth Science Packet

Earth-Science-Packet 150 page - worksheets hands-on activities and more

Volcano Worksheets and Notebook Pages

Layers of the Atmosphere Packet 

Layers of the Atmosphere Packet - Worksheets Hands-On Activities Notebook Pages Layers of the Atmosphere Printable Activity Earth Systems - Atmosphere Geosphere Hydrosphere Notebook Activity - Earth System Lapbook Pieces Earth's Atmosphere Packet 50+ pagesYou will find this packet and more in our Store!

Well, that’s about it for now.  See you next time here or at our Homeschool Den Facebook page!

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~Liesl

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12 Responses

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    […] activity to show how short human history actually is compared to the age of the Earth, talked about the Layers of the Earth and did a hands-on activity, and learned about latitude, longitude and how to use a compass. We […]

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    […] activity to show how short human history actually is compared to the age of the Earth, talked about the Layers of the Earth and did a hands-on activity, and learned about latitude, longitude and how to use a compass. We […]

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    […] activity to show how short human history actually is compared to the age of the Earth, talked about the Layers of the Earth and did a hands-on activity, and learned about latitude, longitude and how to use a compass. We […]

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    […] Solid, Liquid, Gas — Learning Activities 5. Free Fall Themed Activity Packs for 3-6 Year Olds 6. Earth Science: Layers of the Earth Hands-On Activity 7. German Stories for Children Online (Free Animal Packet, vol. 2) 8. Native Americans of the […]

  9. November 9, 2014

    […] Solid, Liquid, Gas — Learning Activities 5. Free Fall Themed Activity Packs for 3-6 Year Olds 6. Earth Science: Layers of the Earth Hands-On Activity 7. German Stories for Children Online (Free Animal Packet, vol. 2) 8. Native Americans of the […]

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    […] Earth Science: Layers of the Earth hands-on Activity […]

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