This week we’re talking all about geology! (Insert “This rocks!” pun here…) We’ll be looking at ways to make crystals, how to find and identify rocks around your community, how to build wind turbines, and how to make rocks you can eat. Since geology is literally the study of the entire planet we can only cover a fraction of what this field includes but we hope it gets you excited!
Online Videos: Use these links to educate and entertain!
- Early Elementary: Learn About Types of Rocks
- Upper Elementary: History of the Grand Canyon for Kids
- Middle School: An Introduction to Geology
- High School: Geology Degree – Is It Worth It?
Rice Krispie Rocks: Rock identification in geology involves examining rocks and following flow charts or detail. Does this rock have more of mineral A or more of mineral B? What shape are those pieces and how did they come together? Once you have a name, it can tell you a lot about how the rock came to be there, but identification can take practice and patience. Luckily in this activity you can identify rocks and get a sweet snack too!
Air in Action: In this activity, students will design and build turbines to measure wind speed. They will learn about different types and applications of turbines and how they convert energy from fluid flow to useful work. They then design, build, and test a candle-powered (convection) turbine, and discuss how it compares to other types of turbines used to generate electrical power. This activity is modified from the iBIO Institute EDUCATE Center.
Geologic Time: Saying things like “dinosaurs lived for 186 million years” or “the Earth formed 4.6 billion years ago” involves numbers that humans really have no context for. These values are so unbelievably big that they can be hard to imagine. This activity creates a physical model that can drive home exactly how huge a scale we’re talking about when we discuss geologic time.
For additional resources, check out our new STEM @ Home page!