rocks and minerals

More About Minerals Mini-Lesson

Objective: Students will learn more about minerals and their different uses.

Suggested Time: 15 minutes

Reading Level: Upper Elementary

Teacher Background

There are more than 3,500 different minerals and more are identified each year. Despite this large number, no two crystals MORE

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Print or Project

  1. A Visual Overview: Show the slideshow of photos to your class. Each has a descriptive caption and kid-friendly copy for your students to read. (Please note that there is also more extensive teacher note copy just for you.)
  2. Creative Caption Review: Once you've been through the slideshow for an overview, go back through it again. This time ask students to explain why the captions do (or do not!) work. (Example: Do you think the caption "Colorful Copper" is a good one for the photo of the copper? Why or why not?)

Click the thumbnail slides below to see the captions and kid-friendly copy up close.

  1. Continue the Conversation: Ask students to look around the room to see if they can identify some useful minerals. Answers will vary but you can point out examples of any steel in the room, including coins in their pocket. Glass is also mostly melted quartz sand. Be sure to point out that our bodies need small traces of minerals that are found in the food we eat.
  2. Write about it: Tell students about the California Gold Rush that occurred in the mid 1800s. Ask them to imagine they have just discovered gold on their land. Then ask them to write two paragraphs about how they feel about the discovery and what they would do with their rare mineral find.

Extension Activities

Reinforcements: These worksheets will be useful as you further develop your teaching unit. The Word Power worksheet will give your students vocabulary practice with key terms from this mini-lesson and the related activity will help reinforce key concepts on rocks and minerals.

worksheet

Word Power Vocabulary
Grade: 4 - 6
Students practice vocabulary relevant to minerals by using each defined word in a sentence.

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worksheet

Classifying Minerals
Grade: 5
Students classify minerals according to different characteristics.

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rule

Excerpted from:

Eyewitness: Rocks & Minerals

Get an in-depth, comprehensive look at rocks and minerals with a unique integration of words and pictures.

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