Learning About Earth’s History and Water

Biology is our focus in our River Classroom for our 4th-6th grade students from the Española Public School District. Last Wednesday we spent a gorgeous day outside at Abiquiu Lake learning a few more important background topics to put our biology in context.

First, we learned about Earth’s history.

Have you ever tried to write out 4.6 billion? It's difficult!
Have you ever tried to write out 4.6 billion? It’s difficult!

Then we took our newfound knowledge and created timelines to scale showing the age of the Earth and how life has evolved over the last 4.6 billion years.

Stretching out the timeline
Determining where to label the most “recent” events, like the dinosaurs
In the last several hundred thousand years, Earth has changed rapidly!


After learning about Earth’s history, we moved on to a discussion of water. Water is one of our most limited and valuable resources in New Mexico, and we want our students to understand as much as they can about it. We talked about the shape of the molecule and how this shape causes it to be polarized. Then we investigated the properties of water compared to isopropyl alcohol.

Learning about the properties of water
Dropping water and isopropyl alcohol onto a piece of wax paper with a dropper to compare and contrast properties of these liquids

We ended the day with a contest to see who could drop the most drops of water and isopropyl alcohol onto a penny.

Every drop counts!

It was another beautiful day with our River Classroom students, and we can’t wait until our next meeting!


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