One of the first things on L's summer to do list was volcanoes. I figured before we dove in and made a cool volcano erupt we needed to go a little deeper and learn about the layers of the earth.
First we watched a Youtube video of a song about the layers of the earth which L found quite catchy and easy to pick up. We also looked at several diagrams in books and on the Internet.
Once she understood the different layers we made our own model out of modelling clay.
L started by rolling a small red ball of clay to represent the inner core. She then proceeded to roll out a different color for each layer and cover the ball with them with a little help from me. It's important not to squish them too much and takes a little finesse. We tried to make each layer approximately the width it should be in proportion to the other layers but we only had so much clay.
The final layers were the water and then the continents.
Once she had held the world in her hands we took a sharp knife and sliced it in half.
She was tickled pink that she had a made a real model of all of the layers of the earth and showed it to everyone she saw.
I found it a very effective way of demonstrating how the layers work.
She then wrote up what she'd done in her science journal.
A few day later we just happened on a documentary I think it was on the National Geographic channel all about going down through the different layers of the earth. It was fascinating and perfect timing.
Now on to volcanoes.....