100 Days of Science #87-- Sediment Layer Jars

We made jars like these years and years ago when we first started homeschooling and attended our first ever homeschool science fair but the younger boys were so young they did not remember this experiment at all.

I knew it was a quick and easy experiment with some fun looking results so I pulled out a couple of mason jars and set them to work.

I told them to go around the yard (and shed/garage) for soil of all types-- sand, loam, potting soil, small rocks, etc.  Whatever they could find and to fill the jar about 1/2 way or so with it.

When they were done collecting samples we filled the jars up to the rim with water.

Then we screwed on the lids and holding the jars over the sink(just in case they leaked!) gave them a good shake to mix everything up.

Then we set them on the table/ counter to observe over the next 12-24 hours.

Within moments we could see some of the layers begin to emerge.

An hour or so later we had even more layers.

By the following morning we could see fairly clear water and knew our jars were done.  

We looked closely at each layer and tried to define what each layer was made up of keeping in mind the different densities of things like wood shavings versus sand.

Have you tried making sediment layer jars before?  Depending on the soil and materials available results will vary widely!

Others in this series:
58.  Exploding Snow and Water Baggies 
59.  Exploring Properties of Minerals
60.  Visiting the Hartford Science Museum
61- 63.  3 Difference Bridge Challenges
64.  Making Models of the Earth's Layers 
65.  Graham Cracker Plate Tectonics 
66.  Homemade Lava Lamps
67.  Movies We're Watching for Science
68.  Index Card Tower Challenge 
69.  Learning Botany at the Botanical Gardens
70.  Board Games for Science
71.  Homemade Frozen Yogurt Pops
72.  Starburst Rock Cycle 
73.  & 74.  Making Marshmallows Sink and Grow
75. Jumping Conversation Hearts
76-78.  Making Paper Airplanes 3 Different Ways 
79.  Learning About Hummingbirds
80.  Planting an Herb Garden
81.  Mushroom Spores
82.-84.  Penny Saturation Experiment
85.  Sink or Float?
86.  Disappearing and Re-Appearing Ink


  1. I always love your science experiments!

    1. Thank you! I am finding this 100 days to be quite the challenge to complete but I am determined to do it.


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