Make a layers of the soil cake to explore the subject in a creative, and yummy, way!
Science does not have to be boring! Although we started our unit study on Rocks and Soil with a few worksheets, I decided to add an extra bit of sweet fun at the end of our unit, which included a baking lesson (as baking is a science after all) with these layers of the soil cake!
We baked a basic sheet cake which I divided into two so each of the boys would have his own piece of “soil” to decorate.
Easy Peasy Quick Cake Recipe
- 1 and a 1/2 cups self-raising flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup oil
- 1/2 cup milk
- 5ml vanilla essence
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Mix dry ingredients. Beat eggs lightly and add oil, milk, and vanilla essence. Add liquid to the dry ingredients and mix well. Spoon evenly into greased baking pan +- 30cm x 20cm x 5cm. Bake 20-25 minutes and cool completely before icing.
We iced the basic cake with different shades of brown icing sugar, and caramel condensed milk and ended with green icing at the top. The green represents the plant material and the very dark brown (add extra cocoa powder to your icing) the topsoil.
Cover the cake completely with the different shades of icing before creating the “Soil” layers. To add texture, anything edible goes! We used different types of biscuits and chocolate, broken into smaller pieces: Chrunchie chocolate, Whispers, Peppermint Crisp and Bar One.
For the finishing touches, a few plastic insects rounded it off quite well. My youngest enjoyed giving the insects a bubbly “bath” first.
We made the tags with colored popsicle sticks, cardboard, and the trusted Prestik/Blutac. Using Prestik instead of glue means we can use the sticks again and I’m a huge supporter of re-use and recycling! (The Rocks and Soil Unit study is available from www.education.com )
All in all, it was a sweet success as they remembered the layers of soil when it came to question worksheets! PS: Have you seen the Milk and Soap Experiment?