After identifying the rivers on their maps of the United States, we talked about rivers and their work. They had noticed that when it rains tiny streams of water form which chase each other down the slopes. The streams cut away the loose soil and carry it off. They noticed how muddy this loose soil makes the water. We talked about how when streams originate in the mountains the water also carries pieces of the mountain along with it. High up in the valley you can see pebbles in the stream bed, but lower down the pebbles are worn into gravel and as it gets even farther down, the gravel grinds down into sand. The water also wears down any of the stones found along the shore of a river. You will find them to be smooth and round. Fertile meadows are formed out of the loam that has been washed down the streams from the hills and mountains. The river overflows its banks from time to time, leaving a layer of rick mud, which makes the soil very fertile. This is what the streams are doing everywhere -plowing deep furrows in the sides of mountains, grinding the pebbles and sand into fine soil and carrying it to the valleys below.
- Home Geography for Primary Grades, Charlotte Mason