Here you will find all of the work we have done on our unit covering Rocks and Minerals.  I will try to include a brief explanation of the lesson, as well as any worksheets we have used.

Lesson 1

What we Know



Today's introductory lesson involved brainstorming with classmates about what we know about rocks and minerals.  We then discussed these ideas as a class.  Today we also started a title page to put at the front of our duo-tang.

List of Words


Lesson 2

Rock Formations



We started today's class by looking at some pictures of rocks.  We talked a bit about the similarities and differences, and then we answered some questions in regards to these rock pictures.



Lesson 3

Rock vs. Mineral




The lesson today was about learning the difference between a mineral (made of one substance) and a rock (made of more than one mineral).  We looked at chocolate bars as a reference.  A pure chocolate bar was compared to a mineral, where as a chocolate bar such as a Mars bar was compared to a rock.  The mars bar is not just one substance, it has other components that make it so tasty.



Lesson 4

Describing Rocks




Together we brainstormed a list of words that could be used to describe rocks.  Then we had a look at some pictures of rocks and added to our list.  our next step was to classify our list of words into five categories.  Words that describe:  Colour, texture, shape, size and lustre (how reflective the surface is).  After seeing these categories we made a table and added even more words to our list.  We then looked at some rocks and used our word list to describe them.

Example Table


Lesson 5

Types of Rock



The first thing we did today was to read through a worksheet about how rocks are formed.  At the end of this worksheet was a fill in the blanks paragraph.  We then read information about minerals.  Following that information were a series of sentences with errors in them.  We corrected those sentences to make truthful sentences about minerals.  At the end of class we played a game (matching definitions to words) to help reinforce the different types of rocks.

Worksheet               Answers


Lesson 6

Rock Booklet




Today we started class with a review of some of our concepts:  Rock vs. Mineral, Igneous vs. Sedimentary vs. Metamorphic.  We then put together rock booklets, which consisted of 6 pages of information about rocks.  We read our booklets to a partner, and had them read to us.  Then we quizzed each other on the information in the booklets.  The information in the booklets will be tested.  To form the booklet, print the file double sided, then fold along the middle. 



Lesson 7

Categorizing Rocks


Over the past couple weeks we have been brining our rocks into class.  Today we pulled them all out and started looking at them.  We used our description list to sort our rocks by the various categories, allowing us to see the true variety found within rocks and minerals.


Lesson 8



In today's class we read about erosion.  We learned that erosion can be caused by many things (wind, water, people), and can occur quickly or can take a very long time.  We read about specific types and examples of erosion, and then discussed them as a class.



Lesson 9

Drawing Rocks



Today we visited three stations, each with a basket of specific rocks.  We read some more information about the different types of rocks, then had an opportunity to see and draw the rocks that we were reading about.  At the end of class we were informed that we will be writing a quiz in one week.  To help prepare us we were given a study sheet.

Worksheet               Quiz Review


Lesson 10

Rock Walk


We got to explore today.  We left school and walked down to a stream.  At the stream we were able to see erosion first hand, and we were able to look at many different rocks that were found in and around the stream.


Lesson 11



We used today's class to catch up on any work that we were not quite finished, and then we studied for our upcoming quiz.  We studied by reading our information, and then by working with partners to quiz each other.


Lesson 12

Rock Characteristics



Our lesson today consisted of reading unlabelled descriptions of rock categories and determining which category of rock they were.  We then justified our choices based on our prior knowledge of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks.  This lesson will continue next class.

Worksheet          Answers


Lesson 13

Practise Quiz



We started today by taking up our worksheet from yesterday.  Pointing out the characteristics of the rocks are based on how the rocks are formed.  Following that we did a practise quiz, in preparation for our quiz next class.  We treated the quiz like we would a real quiz, then we took it up and corrected our answers.  Our quiz next class will be the same information, but it will require written answers (as opposed to matching, true/false and multiple choice).

Practise Quiz               Answers


Lesson 14



Today's lesson was used to write our quiz.



Lesson 15

Hardness Testing




Our lesson today started with discussing the concept of "hardness" and a way to test it is a scratch test.  We learned that the "Mohs scale" is a way of ranking the hardness of rocks and minerals based on how easily they can be scratched.  We then had the opportunity to test a variety of rocks, and attempt to determine their Mohs hardness number.



Lesson 16

Life Cycle of an Aluminum Can




We started today's lesson by writing a quiz on the recycling of aluminum cans (don't worry, not for marks).  We then looked at a series of pictures showing the life cycle of an aluminum can, from bauxite to forming.  After that we watched a video that showed the recycling stages of the can (see youtube link below).  We next talked about putting together a book telling the story of the aluminum can, and giving it to some of our younger students.  Lastly we took up the answers to the quiz we wrote at the start of class.

Quiz               Answers               Pictures               Video               Colouring Book


Lesson 17





Today's lesson started by reading some information about erosion from some library books (sorry, I an not post the information).  We then looked at some pictures showing erosion of rocks in various situations.  Following that we received a worksheet with some more information, specifically about the three types of soil erosion; water, wind and glacier.  On this worksheet we showed how we would try to help reduce erosion.



Lesson 18






Our topic today was mining.  We read an article from People magazine that talked about a man whose home is completely surrounded by destroyed environment due to mining.  We then read a little bit of information about mining from some texts.  Next we had a discussion about the positive and negative effects of mining (people have jobs and make money, but the environment is destroyed, etc).  Our last task of the day was to try to show how we would rejuvenate some land that had been destroyed by the extraction of rock from the earth.

Article 1               Article 2               Worksheet               Answers


Lesson 19

Mining Chocolate Chip Cookies


We were told not to play with our food, no one said we could not learn with it.  Each of us was given a Chunks Ahoy cookie, a paper towel and a toothpick.  We used our toothpick to mine out the chocolate from our cookie.  After our activity was over we compared the cookie to the land that is mind and we discovered that the land was destroyed (although, still tasty).


Lesson 20



We used today's class to review all of our work from this unit.  We were given a review sheet with a variety of questions covering our entire unit.  We used the period to answer these questions, using our worksheets as resources.  We then conferenced with our classmates to compare answers.  Finally we discussed our answers as a class.  We were strongly urged to study this review sheet over the next few days.



Lesson 21

Unit Test


Today is our last rocks and minerals lesson.  Today we will show that we are rocks and minerals experts.  We used today's period to write our end of unit test.


This concludes our unit on Rocks and Minerals.  Our next unit is Pulleys and Gears.