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Technology and the Environment

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Keywords: Acid Rain, Journal, Environment, germinaton, Pollution,
Subject(s): Technology, Writing, Reading, Earth Science, Biology
Grade 6
School: Sonoraville East Middle School, Calhoun, GA
Planned By: Ray Payne
Original Author: Ray Payne, Calhoun
Students will construct a grow column from two empty 2 liter soda bottles. These can be brought from home or retrieved from the school recycling program. Students will access the following web site for instructions on constructing the grow column. (http://www.bottlebiology.org/) A copy of the book Bottle Biology idea book is also very helpful. Teachers can modify the construction to suit classroom settings. Safety with tools and materials should be reviewed before construction begins. When completed student fill the columns with potting soil and seeds are planted. Water well and place in a warm sunny location. Have students keep the soil moist each day until the seeds sprout. My students like to make predictions on when the seed will germinate.

At the beginning of class after the seed has germinated student teams will water and record the growth of the grass on their journal sheets. Certain teams will be selected to test the affects of acid rain (water and lemon juice), Oil water mixture and salt water on the grass. Students will record the data and write their observations on the data sheets. Students can also make observations of watering and sunlight. The wick watering system is very interesting to the teams.
The project usually last around 4 school weeks according to the time of year the project begins. My students really enjoy this lesson and do not want to dispose of the grass and soil when it ends. This project draws a lot of attention from visitors to my classroom
Materials: Whiteboards, Hard Drives
Other Items: Empty 2 liter soda bottles
Potting soil
Grass seed
Clear tape
Scrap cloth strips