Rocks & Minerals Unit Study

Rocks & Minerals Unit Study

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One of the topics Rosie and Ladybug wanted to study was rocks and minerals. At first I honestly wasn’t sure how much I could pull together for it after covering the basics. As you’ll see on my Pinterest board {Learning Rocks & Minerals}, I found plenty of ideas to keep us busy!

 

Today I’m going to share with you the outline I put together for this unit. Bare in Funny

mind, some days will look pretty lean but those were days where we had obligations that took us out of the house for a large chunk of time and the one or two activities were all we could squeeze in. {Be sure to check back because I’m going to share our activities in the next few days so you can do them too!}

 

At the beginning of any unit study, I like to spend a day or two introducing the girls to some of the new vocabulary they will come across and to give them some “beginning” knowledge [kind of as a starting point for the unit]. By doing this, I have found that as we go along, it helps the girls to better understand what they are reading, watching or doing as well as the ‘why’ for the activities.

Daily Outline

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

  • ‘What’s in my soil?’ write -up
  • Calculated soil components percentages

Day 6

  • Soil Shake-up activity with a third sample
  • Grow Your Own Salt Crystals [This activity is to help the kids see and understand crystal shapes which translates to a better understanding of the shapes of minerals and why some have flat, smooth surfaces and others have jagged surfaces.]
  • Rock Identification using Mohs Scale & observation table {free printables found here}

Day 7

  • Make your own rock cycle using posterboard

Day 8

  • Rock Buffet – We had an ice cream bar where we created edible igneous “rocks”. We started by adding “minerals” to our bowls: Rice Krispies cereal, marshmallows, sprinkles, etc. Then we added to our bowls lots of Magic Shell Chocolate, which is our magma engulfing all of the minerals. We know that igneous rocks are formed from the cooling of the magma so once the ice cream is added to the bowl, the chocolate instantly hardens with all of the “minerals” captured in it. And so, our edible igneous rocks!

Day 9

  • Classify new rocks found throughout the week using our rock guides (found at the bottom of the page)
  • Group like rocks together and label jars {This is setting up for our next activity.}

Day 10 & 11

Day 12

Day 13

  • Rock Comic – The girls chose the layouts they wanted for their comic book pages from ComicBookPaper.com and we printed out a few pages for each of them. This is a perfect closing activity for my kids because it allows them to be creative. They love writing stories and drawing and this combines the two while emphasizing what they learned. I did give them some guidelines for their comics: It has to have the rock cycle in it. You need to use some of the vocabulary we talked about.

 

Other activities [I had more ideas listed out but we didn’t get to them before interest waned. Some of these are activities I have found since we completed this unit and have saved in case we re-visit this topic.]

BooksFor this unit, I did actually buy these books and we found them incredibly helpful.

Smithsonian Nature Guide Rocks and Minerals

Smithsonian Nature Guide Gems

Smithsonian Handbooks Rocks and Minerals

National Geographic Pocket Guide Rocks & Minerals of North America

A Golden Guide Rocks and Minerals (Rosie found this at Gramma’s house and really liked looking through it)

 

And that’s it. Our Rocks & Minerals unit study. I hope that you found it helpful in creating your own unit study. Or helpful in finding some activities to supplement your own unit study. Be sure to check back in the next few days because I will be exploring a few of the activities a little deeper!

Are there any activities or books you’d like to see added to the list? Or field trips? I’d love to hear about your thoughts and ideas! Just leave me a comment! 🙂 

Have a great day and remember:

You rock clip art clip art free clip art microsoft clip art

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