Teacher Resources

I love soil




sorting aggregates




activity 1 part 1 squeezing soil




Feeling soil texture




Worm Test


The articles and activities in these pages are intended for both the general public and for student use.

The following information identifies how these resources fit within the New Zealand education system.

Continue down the page to find links with other New Zealand soil resources.


New Zealand Curriculum Achievement Objectives



Nature of Science: Understanding about science, Investigating in science, Communicating in science, and participating and contributing.

Planet Earth and Beyond: Earth Systems and Interacting Systems.

Living World: Ecology.


Social Sciences:

Understand how people view and use places differently. Understand how people make decisions about access to and use of resources.

Understand how people’s management of resources impacts on environmental and social sustainability.

Social Sciences: Geography.


Science Capabilities:

Gather and interpret data – hands-on activities provide opportunities for observation/inference.

Use evidence – produce explanations via data/observations from hands-on activities.

Critique evidence – activities provide opportunities to compare/check findings with those of experts.

Engage with science – opportunities to carry out the same soil assessment techniques that professionals use.


Literacy Opportunities:

Consider printing a portion of an article for use as a reading activity. Cut and paste the information into Word, changing the font and font size if appropriate. Create a couple of simple questions to answer or remove content vocabulary to create a cloze activity.

The activity Dig A Hole uses the picture book Sam & Dave Dig a Hole.

The activity Test Your Soil Knowledge has a download option. Print the PDF to use for a reading activity.

The School Journal and Connected series have these soil related titles:

  • From rock to rock. Connected Number 3, 2000
  • The water cycle. Connected Number 2, 2002
  • Living on a volcano. Connected Number 1, 2011
  • Living on a lava flow. Connected Number 2, 2005
  • Earth paints Part 1, Number 5, 2004


Links With Other New Zealand Resources:

Building Science Concepts Soil Animals: Diversity Beneath our Feet NZC levels 3-4. Themes include food webs, soil’s role in sustaining growth of all plants and indirectly all animals, recycling and composting.

Science Learning Hub Resources:

Soil, Farming and Science (NCE levels 3-6) Learn about soil science basics and explore innovative science ideas that can help farmers and the environment.

Earthworms (NCE levels 2-6) Learn about introduced and common earthworms and the roles they play in soil ecosystems.

Enviro-imprints (NCE levels 5-8) Learn about soil quality and soil contamination.

NZ Soils website. Extensive information about New Zealand soils. Contains maps, images and written content.

S-Map Online. The digital soil map for New Zealand.

Te Ara Soils. Soil basics and descriptions of the soil orders.