Our eighth graders are becoming soil scientists this fall, with the help of Dr. Katie Peterson from BSU and their science teachers here at BMS. Our students have gone out on our campus and collected soil samples, brought them to their classrooms and prepared the soil so they could run some tests on it. They also made macro-invertebrate collection stations to see what types of “critters” live in the soil and decomposing leaves. The first test was to see what types of bacteria might live in the soil and compare it to bacteria living elsewhere (water fountains, bathrooms, door knobs, etc around our school). They prepared petri dishes with the samples and will let them grow for a few days. The next day students determined what the soils type was (clay, sandy, silty, peaty, chalky, loamy) Then they tested the soils Ph, nitrogen and potassium levels. In doing all these tests students are also learning how to set a scale at tare and what that means, how to correctly measure dry and liquid items, how to use test tubes and droppers, and how to use deionized water for solutions, all skills that scientists use everyday.