Objective: Children will experiment with proportions of water and dirt in changing the solids (dirt) into liquids (muddy water).
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Note: Limit the number of children experimenting per station to three. This is a great activity to do outdoors.
Most children have past experiences with dirt, water, and mud. When provided with opportunities and time to explore, children can make predictions, experiment, and form theories about dirt, water, and mixing the two together. Mixtures can change depending on the amount of each ingredient added to the mix. Typically, more liquid added to a mixture makes it thinner; less liquid yields a thicker mixture. Mud can be either a liquid or a solid, depending on whether it has more soil or more water. Because mud takes the shape of the container it is poured into, it fits the definition of a liquid.
Dirt and water are found everywhere on Earth. Mud is a mixture of water with soil, dirt, clay, or any combination of the three. Mud forms near water sources or after a rain. Mud has been used for centuries to make bricks, called adobe, for constructing buildings. Sometimes grasses, such as straw, are added to the mud to make the bricks stronger. Mud also provides homes for many animals, including worms, frogs, snails, and clams.
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These lessons are aligned with the Common Core State Standards ("CCSS"). The CCSS provide a consistent, clear understanding of the concepts and skills children are expected to learn and guide teachers to provide their students with opportunities to gain these important skills and foundational knowledge.
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There are currently no Common Core Standards for pre-k, but these lessons are aligned as closely as possible to capture the requirements and meet the goals of Common Core Standards. However, these lessons were neither reviewed or approved by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices or the Council of Chief State School Officers, which together are the owners and developers of the Common Core State Standards.