How To Create an Edible Soil Profile {Recipe/Tutorial}

Recently I had been teaching a unit on soil, so when Earth Day came around, it fell at a perfect time for me to combine the two.  I wanted my students to have fun exploring different aspects of soil, such as soil conservation and soil profiles.  A great way to kickstart a mini-lesson on soil conservation is to complete this Earth Apple activity, either using a real apple or exploring the virtual lesson.  For the soil profiles, I could have actually gotten the different types of soil and had the students create a soil profile, but I thought they would have a little fun creating an edible version!

I can't take credit for creating the edible recipe and trust me when I say there are lots of versions out there.  But, I found a recipe that better coincided with the aspect of soil profiling that I was teaching and I made a little modification in ingredients due to time constraints and school regulations.

Materials Needed (for a group of 20):
  • Clear cups
  • plain M&M's
  • 2 tubs of Cool Whip
  • hot chocolate powder mix
  • sprinkles
  • Oreo cookies, crushed/crumbled
  • gummy worms
  • spoons
Preliminary Prep:
  • Sort each material in separate containers so children can easily access each material.
  • Allow the Cool Whip to stand at room temperature so that it is not frozen.  Mix in enough hot chocolate mix and stir until you reach the desired color and the white has blended in well with the chocolate.
Layering instructions (per cup):
  • 1 spoon of M&M's.
  • 2 spoonfuls of Cool Whip/cocoa mix
  • sprinkle of sprinkles
  • 2 spoonfuls of crushed cookies
  • 1 gummy worm
The real meaning of the ingredients:
  • The M&M's represent the rocky, parent material.
  • The Cool Whip mixture represents the subsoil.
  • The sprinkles represent the organisms.
  • The crushed cookies represent the topsoil.
  • And then there's the earth worm that lives in the soil.
* Now you know I used generic brands, so it was grocery store brand whipped topping and Wal-Mart's "Twist & Shout" cookies instead of Oreos.  But I did use some Ghiradelli Double Chocolate mix that I already had on hand.  Hey, I had 40 kids to prepare for.  They didn't seem to mind and the activity went over very well. *

You can make a large pan of this for a party or class activity, but I really wanted the kids to make their own.  :-)
Happy Crafting,

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  1. This looks so yummy! Why didn't I ever get to make these when I was in school? I feel deprived now :)

  2. Oh yummy! These were a favorite of mine when I was younger ... I will have to make this with my son :) Thanks for the inspiration!

    Hugs to you!

  3. What a fun activity to show the perspective of things. I know one little person who would love both activities being they have her favorite treats, apples and candy. :)

  4. my little girls would not eat this...on the other hand, the boy would just stuff his face with it :)

  5. This looks delicious!!!! What a cute idea for Earth Day!

  6. My kids always loved eating dirt and worms!


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