Fourth Grade Learns Process of Strip Mining with Cookies

As part of their studies of the Southeast United States, fourth grade students spent some time discussing strip mining. Students learned that strip mining, a process of removing a thin strip of earth or soil to mine a seam of mineral, is often done primarily in states such as Tennessee, West Virginia, and Kentucky.

To reinforce their studies, students were tasked with “strip mining” chocolate chips out of a cookie. Their findings? It was nearly impossible to remove every chocolate chip without the cookie crumbling. To take it a step further, Mrs. Gallagher, fourth grade social studies teacher, challenged them to put the cookie crumbles back together.

This fun, hands-on activity helped students understand the environmental impact of strip mining.