Thursday, November 14, 2013

Let's Talk Rocks!

For the past few weeks, we have been studying about the earth. The kids have learned about the different layers of the earth, mountains, and now we are studying the different types of rocks.

We headed to our local arboretum for a wonderful field trip/class on rocks. It was really cold that day, but the kids were very excited for their class.
We were met by one of the staff members and headed into a warm room.
"Ms. Emily" talked to the students about rocks and had them create their own sedimentary rock.

Each child was given three colors of play dough. They rolled each color into a ball and then flattened them out with their hands. 

They looked like colored pancakes.

They layered each color onto the other and pressed down forming a bond. They then squished the play dough into different shapes to present mountains. This was explained to the children as the plate tectonics moving. The mountains we live on were formed this way many years ago.

The children were given a piece of fishing wire to use to scrape off area of the play dough. This was to represent the effects of the wind, rain, snow, etc. 
This is best known as erosion!

After our fun project, we bundled up and headed outdoors to look for rocks.

We can find shale in many places in our area. It was used years ago to build houses, chimneys, and  fences.
We have used it to form our flower garden beds. When you live in the mountains, you have plenty of rocks to chose from.

This is shale that has areas that are slowly being eroded away by the environment.

After being chilled to the bone, we headed back indoors for a fun0-filled activity that taught the students about various types of rocks. 

Ms. Emily had 5 tables set up.  On each table were 3-6 different types of rocks and 3 sheets with questions.
The children were to read each question and figure out which rock it was referring to.
There were examples of sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic rocks. There were minerals like talc, salt (yes, the kids tested it), and quartz. There was even a sample of fools gold!

A pumice stone that they kids were able to test and see it float!

Geodes broken up to reveal the crystals inside.

The children had a wonderful time and learned plenty about rocks!

Linking up with....


  1. That sounds like a very interesting field trip. I like the hands idea using the playdough. That was a great visual. I wonder if we have something like that around here I can take the kids too. Well not now as it has been bone chilling cold but maybe in spring.

  2. Hey there
    Awesome lesson!

    Thank you!

    Ok, my blog post dividers info I stuck at the bottom of the post, but THANKS for asking bc I did not realize how small the link was. No one can see it. Gotta enlarge.

    snwomen came from

    and check out shabby blogs to for free blog stuff.
    Are you on pinterest?
    I have a lot of good stuff on my BLOGGING board too

    Have a great day

  3. Wow! I love this! What a great hands-on learning experience for your kids. Thanks for linking up with Field Trip Friday. I hope you will be able to join us again this week. The post should go live early Friday morning.


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