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Project Hero


6th, 7th, 8th


Science, Biology, Earth and Space Sciences

Resource Types

  • Videos, 1 minute, 50 seconds
  • Activity - Classroom
  • Activity - Outdoors
  • Interactive Media
  • Ebooks

Regional Focus


Project Hero Soil Quest - Explore: Soil Impact Survey

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Project Hero

  • In this activity, students will survey their community to determine where carbon is being sequestered or released from the soil, calculate their individual carbon footprints using a variety of calculators, and respond to a variety of reflection questions.
Teaching Tips


  • This activity will inspire students to take a close look at their community and consider how they can help improve the local soil.
  • The resource provides links to three carbon footprint calculators for students to explore.

Additional Prerequisites

  • This is part of the Explore section of the Project Hero Soil Quest. 
  • The Virtual Student Guide explains the activities.


  • Teachers could have students work in small groups to survey different parts of the community surrounding their school and then compile the information to get an idea of the community's soil health.
  • Students could make a map of their community to indicate the location of developed areas, natural spaces, and bare soil.
  • Other resources on this topic include this video on how fungi sequester carbon in the soil, this PBS video on the importance of soil, and this video on how soil stores energy from sunlight.
Scientist Notes

The resource offers a step-by-step comparison of soil-based activities that could promote soil carbon storage and those that could hasten carbon emissions into the atmosphere. After completing the survey, students are given a set of questions to answer and this would inspire them to engage in solutions that would improve soil carbon storage in their community. The use of this resource in the classroom is advised.

  • Science
    • ESS2: Earth's Systems
      • MS-ESS2-1. Develop a model to describe the cycling of Earth’s materials and the flow of energy that drives plate tectonics.
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-3. Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
  • English Language Arts
    • Writing (K-12)
      • W.7.2 Write text in a variety of modes: a) Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons, relevant evidence, and literary theory. Introduce claim(s), acknowledge alternate or opposing claims, and organize the reasons and evidence logically. Use accurate, credible sources; b) Write informative text that examines a topic and conveys ideas, concepts, and information through the selection and organization of relevant content by introducing and developing a topic with relevant, well-chosen facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples, organizing ideas, concepts, and information into broader categories; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension; c) Write narratives that develop real or imagined experiences or events using relevant descriptive details and well-structured event sequences that organize an event sequence logically. Engage and orient the reader by establishing a context and point of view and introducing a narrator or characters; using techniques, such as dialogue, pacing, description, and reflection, to develop experiences, events, and characters.
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