This website is inspired by the International Year of Soils 2015, now the International Decade of Soils, and its first aim “to raise awareness of soils”. 

It provides resources for schools, community and people generally to use to learn about soils from as many places and uses as possible.  It is a work in progress with new Soil Selfies added as they become available.

The first section is the Soil Selfies colleciton, a collaborative educational resource about soils, what they look like close-up, how they are used and seen by their people. You can add to this resource and/or explore it. It was first presented as a display at the Global Soil Week forum in Berlin in April funded by IASS: Day 1 – the Wimmera (photos), Day 2 – Victoria(photos), Day 3 – the eastern Australian States (photos). The Soil Selfies have been uploaded during the year used in the Wimmera Soil Education Project at eight primary schools and in various other displays, and is continuing on to be used.

The second section is the Soil in Stories, which contains other soil education activities and resources, including the Wimmera Soil Education project .  The 2015 incursions into 8 Wimmera primary schools, reached 200 primary children and their teachers – providing hands-on learning activities developed by enviroed4all-  and was mainly funded by the Wimmera Catchment Management Authority.
The first session used the Soil Selfies close-up and in use to expand the IYS theme Healthy Soils for a Healthy life.
The second session applied these ideas to soils the children brought in from home as we looked at signs of healthy places and how this is linked to soil, i.e. as part of systems in our environment.
The third session, Snooping into our Soils, was timed for National Science Week, and looks into the composition of our soils.
The fourth session, Caring for our Wimmera soils, brought all the prior sessions together to share the findings of the 8 schools with each other, identify key clay and sand soil problems of a very dry year and basic principles of how to care for such soils whether they are in a backyard or on farmland.

2015 should not be the beginning and end of learning about soils. There is so much to learn.  I hope this website will continue to be a place of  resource for basic soil knowledge and an inspiration for continuing that knowledge journey.

updated 6 July 2016

5 thoughts on “Soils

  1. Goedele Vanacker

    Hello Jeanie,

    How are you ? We have met on the Global Soil Week. I hope you have had a fruitful stay in Germany and France after the Global Soil Week and that you have safely returned to Australia.

    I am preparing some soil stories for the website and was wondering if you would allow me to post a link to your website on our site. Would it be possible to let me know what were the concerns of the people that have send in the soil selfies ? I have seen that there were a lot of worries about soil fertility. Were there other concerns ?

    Did it work out with the school project ? Not to stress you, just to hear how things are going. I was very happy that you just considered involving the school children in our soil stories.

    Take care, lots of greetings from Belgium,


    1. enviroed Post author

      Greeting Goedele, in Flanders
      Great to hear you are working on your Soil Stories project.
      Thankyou for offering. Yes, please link.
      I have sent a full reply on email.
      Greetings from the Wimmera
      cheers, from Jeanie

  2. Dave Nelson

    Please keep up your good work on this very important aspect of environmental education! Please let me know how I can contribute. I work at Apollo Bay P-12 College where we have a kitchen-garden program running for students through years 3 – 8. We have a very productive garden that uses organic & biodynamic principles to grow food. Students spend 1 period per week working on all manner of tasks in the garden and then 2 periods in the kitchen cooking what they have just picked. The kids (& their families) love it. Looking after the soil (we treat it like a living thing which it is really) is the cornerstone to successful agriculture and horticulture so the more kids learn about soil and nurturing it the better.

    1. enviroed Post author

      Delighted Dave.
      I really do need Soil Selfies contributions to grow this collection 1 on-going – for people and schools to use and 2 in the short term for the Aussie Soil Selfies display at Global Soils Week Forum in Berlin mid-April
      Sending you an email reply


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