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Photo by Jill Pelto

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Jill Pelto Gallery


3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Earth and Space Sciences, Visual and Performing Arts

Resource Types

  • Artwork
  • Article

Regional Focus

Global, Europe

"Spring Core Extraction"

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  • This watercolor and colored pencil piece portraying a scientist taking a core sample is accompanied by a robust explanation of the artwork presented. 
  • Students will learn about the field research completed by scientists, what is going on beneath the surface, and soil levels and segments. 
Teaching Tips


  • This resource includes a gorgeous piece of art that will inspire young artists and scientists.
  • Students will enjoy learning about how art and science can merge unexpectedly.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should understand the concepts of scientific fieldwork, climate change, soil layers and cores, and strata.
  • It may benefit students to understand the connection between art and science.


  • This resource would work equally well in a science or art class. Teachers can make cross-curricular connections in social studies classes studying how scientists can "look through time" and into the past by examining soil.
  • This resource would work well for a gallery walk. Print this art piece and several others from Jill Pelto. Have students walk around the room and make observations (either scientific or artistic, depending on the class). Students can either post their ideas on sticky notes near each piece or share them in a whole-class share-out session. 
  • If your science class is learning about another type of fieldwork, have students illustrate their understanding of the fieldwork and explain what scientists do and why. 
Scientist Notes
This resource is a piece of artwork by artist Jill Pelto, who uses her art to communicate science ideas, mostly about climate change, and inspire people to act. The image is the second painting in a series of five depicting how a team of five scientists conduct their fieldwork. Specifically, this image shows boots standing in a bog and taking a core sample from the ground. The description gives a brief explanation of the science of the different layers of sediment, including how they differ and why they depict a glaciated area. The artist adds a disclaimer that the transition in the sediment color is not to scale, but otherwise, the information is accurate. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS2: Earth's Systems
      • 3-ESS2-2 Obtain and combine information to describe climates in different regions of the world.
      • 4-ESS2-1 Make observations and/or measurements to provide evidence of the effects of weathering or the rate of erosion by water, ice, wind, or vegetation.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Informational Text (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.1.2 Identify the main topic and retell key details of a text.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.2.1 Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.
  • National Core Arts Standards
    • Media Arts: Standard 8 - Interpret intent and meaning in artistic work.
      • MA:Re8.1.3a Determine the purposes and meanings of media artworks while describing their context.
      • MA:Re8.1.IIa Analyze the intent, meanings, and influence of a variety of media artworks, based on personal, societal, historical, and cultural contexts.
    • Visual Arts: Standard 7 - Perceive and analyze artistic work.
      • VA:Re7.1.6a Identify and interpret works of art or design that reveal how people live around the world and what they value
      • VA:Re7.2.Ia Analyze how one’s understanding of the world is affected by experiencing visual imagery.
      • VA:Re7.2.IIa Evaluate the effectiveness of an image or images to influence ideas, feelings, and behaviors of specific audiences.
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