Learning Experience 1: Getting Started



For each group of three students:

3 Student Activity Sheets for Learning Experience 1

Set of rock and mineral samples

Rock Samples

1. Shale

2. Granite

3. Pink Sandstone

4. White Marble

5. Pumice

6. Obsidian

7. Limestone

8. Slate

9. Fossil Sandstone

10. Anthracite

Mineral Samples

11. Graphite

12. Galena

13. Magnetite

14. Hematite

15. Talc

16. Gypsum

17. Biotite

18. Calcite

19. Pink Feltspar

20. Quartz

21. Garnet

For the class:

Felt tip markers

Chart paper




Each student should obtain a notebook and a folder with pockets to hold the activity sheets for this unit. Create a KWHL chart to post in the classroom. When handling the samples, instruct the students use their metal tweezers to remove and replace the samples one at a time.

Basic Skills Development:







Evaluation Strategy:

Students will contribute ideas to a KWHL chart on rocks and minerals.





Objective: Students will discuss their background knowledge of rocks and minerals.

What do we know about rocks and minerals?

Students are to complete the Student Activity Sheet for Learning Experience 1, by exploring their knowledge about properties, uses, and interesting information on rocks and minerals. Using the KWHL strategy, students will explore their knowledge about rocks and minerals and then expand on it throughout the unit.

Brainstorm what the students already “know” about the rocks and minerals they will be studying. Record their ideas on the KWHL chart. Ask students to think about these rocks and minerals and decide what it is about these rocks and minerals they would like to know more about and record their ideas under the “want to know” column.

Now that the students have decided what they want to know, they need to think about “how they are going to find out” the answers to the questions they have. After the hands-on activities included in this unit, maintaining journals, and discussions, students can then record information in the “what we learned and still want to learn” column. This process can be done in cooperative groups where students gather information in small groups and then share their information with the class.

Distribute the rock and mineral samples to each group of students. Ask them to observe the samples carefully. Ask students to find some similarities and differences between the samples.

Discussion Questions:

Have you seen any of the rock and minerals before? When and where?

What similarities and differences do you notice in the samples?

Compare the rock samples to the mineral samples.

Do you notice differences?

What are they?


STUDENT ACTIVITY SHEET for Learning Experience 1

Name ____________________




What do we know about rocks?




Interesting Information


What do we know about minerals?


Interesting Information

Non-profit Tax ID # 203478467