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Soil Permeability

Investigating the permeability of different soil types.

'Soil Permeability' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:  Rocks

Curriculum subtopic:  Soils

Difficulty level:  

down

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Not all soil is the same. There are different types of soil with different characteristics. One of these differences is how easily water drains through the soil. This is called the permeability of the soil. The more permeable the soil is the more easily it will drain.

The permeability of the soil can be very important. It can help people to decide which crops will grow best there, or whether the land is good for building on. Use this worksheet to test what you know about soils and permeability.

The permeability of a soil tells you...

how fast rivers flow over the ground

how long it takes the soil to dry out

how easily water moves through the soil

how often the soil is rained on

Which of these is a fair way to test the permeability of soil samples?

put some water in a jar, cover it with a soil sample and see how long it takes the water to reach the surface

put a soil sample in a funnel, pour in some water and measure how much water trickles through in a minute

time how long it takes for the wet soil to dry out

If you carry out your permeability test on a sample of clay soil and a sample of sandy soil, which would you expect to be most permeable?

clay

sandy

both the same

Why is a sandy soil more permeable than a clay soil?

the sandy soil has bigger particles with more spaces between for the water to flow through

the water sticks to the clay particles and moves more slowly

sand is smoother than clay so the water moves more quickly

When testing soil samples which of these should you do to keep your tests fair? (You can select more than one answer).

use the same amounts of each sample

use clean equipment each time

use the same amount of water each time

pour the water on to the soil at the same rate each time

use the same kind of equipment each time

  • Question 1

The permeability of a soil tells you...

CORRECT ANSWER
how easily water moves through the soil
  • Question 2

Which of these is a fair way to test the permeability of soil samples?

CORRECT ANSWER
put a soil sample in a funnel, pour in some water and measure how much water trickles through in a minute
  • Question 3

If you carry out your permeability test on a sample of clay soil and a sample of sandy soil, which would you expect to be most permeable?

CORRECT ANSWER
sandy
EDDIE SAYS
The water wil flow much more quickly through the sandy soil.
  • Question 4

Why is a sandy soil more permeable than a clay soil?

CORRECT ANSWER
the sandy soil has bigger particles with more spaces between for the water to flow through
  • Question 5

When testing soil samples which of these should you do to keep your tests fair? (You can select more than one answer).

CORRECT ANSWER
use the same amounts of each sample
use clean equipment each time
use the same amount of water each time
pour the water on to the soil at the same rate each time
use the same kind of equipment each time
EDDIE SAYS
Did you get that all of these things are correct? Keeping everything the same, apart from changing the soil samples, is the only way to make sure your results are accurate. For example, it wouldn't be a fair test to use a narrow funnel for one soil sample and a broad funnel for another.
---- OR ----

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