Worlds of David Darling > Children's
Encyclopedia of Science > Could You Ever Dig a Hole to China? > Hands
COULD YOU EVER DIG A HOLE TO CHINA?
a book in the Could You Ever? series by David Darling
Make you own hole in the ground and keep a careful record of what
First, make sure you have permission before you begin digging. Choose your
site carefully. An empty vegetable plot is ideal.
You will need:
Beneath the ground you are standing on is a history of the people who have
lived here, and a history of the Earth itself. The deeper you go, the older
the objects you are likely to find. But if the ground has been repeatedly
dug up, remains from different periods may have become mixed in the same
- A gardening spade
- A trowel, for more delicate work
- A tape measure
- Containers, such as jam jars, for putting specimens in
- A notepad and pencil for keeping records
Dig slowly and carefully, collecting any interesting stones, soil specimens,
bones and human-made objects. Place these in containers labeled with the
depth below the surface at which they were buried. Also, make notes of any
living things you find, such as plant roots, seeds, worms, larvae, and insects.
Use a hand lens or a microscope to examine soil at various depths. What
is the deepest that you can identify any life form? Keep a record of your
progress and try to decide where the topsoil ends and the subsoil begins.
If your hole gets deeper than about your waist, make sure an adult is watching
in case the walls collapse. When you are finished, fill in the hole and
leave the area as you found it.
If possible, show your discoveries to a teacher or a museum worker in order
to learn more about them. Your local museum or historical society might
be especially interested in anything very old or unusual that you find.