Getting Carried Away!

Have you ever noticed deep paths running down the sides of a hill? Did you wonder what carved the paths? In science class, you have learned what Earth is made of and how it changes over time. When you do this activity, you can see for yourself how some changes on Earth happen.


Small hill of dirt on a sheet of cardboard.


With the help of an adult family member, cut out a piece of cardboard about 60 centimeters (about 24 inches) square. Build a mountain, using modeling clay. Then add a layer of sand over the clay and gently press it into the clay. Add more sand by sprinkling it on top of the mountain, making sure that the mountain is completely covered. Stick small twigs into the mountain to look like trees. Then scatter rocks of different sizes around the mountain. Blow through the straw to see what effect the “wind” has on the mountain. Next, use the watering can to sprinkle water down the mountain.


How did the “wind” and water change the mountain? What happened to the sand and the rocks? Did anything happen to the trees?