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Earth
Erosion
Changing the Earth's Crust



Changing the Earth's Crust
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.65

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    opening, pothole, earth, rushing, rainwater, material, carbon, dioxide, erosion, underwater, easily, outer, ashes, underground, roots, lava
     content words:    Hawaiian Islands, Pacific Ocean


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Changing the Earth's Crust
By Cindy Grigg
  

1     The earth is very old. It has changed as time passed. The outer layer of the earth is called the crust. The earth's crust is made of rocks and soil. Rocks crumble and wear away. When rocks break down, they weather. Most rocks weather very slowly over many years. Weathering happens in several different ways.
 
2     Freezing water weathers rock. When you look at a rock, you see many tiny cracks and holes in it. When it rains or snows, water fills these holes and cracks. The water freezes and pushes against the rock. The rock slowly breaks apart. Over many years, the water causes rock to break into small pieces and form soil. You may have seen potholes in streets or roads. A pothole forms when water freezes in cracks in the pavement. As the water freezes, it gets bigger. It pushes against the cracks and makes a hole in the pavement.
 
3     Plants also help to weather rocks. Soil can collect in the cracks of a rock. Plants can grow in this soil. Then plant roots can break rocks apart. Over many years, the roots can help crumble a large rock. Tree roots can break a boulder apart.
 
4     Sometimes, rainwater and gases in the air can weather rocks. Carbon dioxide is a gas in the air. It can mix with rain to form a new material that is an acid. This acid can make hard minerals in rocks soft. Then the rocks slowly break apart. This type of weathering is called chemical weathering. Rainwater can eat away the minerals in rocks. This can make hollow spaces. Big hollow spaces in underground rocks are underground caverns called caves.

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Earth
             Earth


Erosion
             Erosion


Science
             Science


    Careers in Science  
 
    Caring for Earth  
 
    Clouds  
 
    Dinosaurs  
 
    Earth's Land  
 
    Earth  
 
    Earthquakes  
 
    Electricity  
 
    Energy  
 
    Erosion  
 
    Food Pyramid  
 
    Food Webs and Food Chain  
 
    Forces and Motion  
 
    Fossils  
 
    Health and Nutrition  
 
    How Things Work  
 
    Landforms  
 
    Life Science  
 
    Light  
 
 
    Magnets  
 
    Matter  
 
    Natural Disasters  
 
    Photosynthesis  
 
    Plant and Animal Cells  
 
    Plants  
 
    Rocks and Minerals  
 
    Science Process Skills  
 
    Seasons  
 
    Simple Machines  
 
    Solar System  
 
    Sound  
 
    Space and Stars  
 
    Tsunami  
 
    Volcanoes  
 
    Water Cycle  
 
    Water  
 
    Weather  
 


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