Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Another Week of Geology

 Yay--my TNT teaching is all done!  Last week we covered landforms, but this week's topic (for the same 1st and 2nd graders) was the 3 different kinds of rocks.  I scoured the internet and combined a few different ideas so that we had an edible "model" for each type of rock, models that did not need to be heated or cooled there on the spot, and also that did not include peanut butter! 

For igneous rock, at home I melted a bunch of white and dark chocolate chips, then poured that out onto a sheet of wax paper.  Just like lava!  I broke up the chocolate "lava" and gave each child a piece.

For sedimentary rock, I made rice krispie treats, mixing in M&Ms for some larger pieces of "sediment", like a conglomerate rock.  (And of course I gave each child a little piece.)

For metamorphic rock, I gave each child 2 Starburst of different colors, and by holding them in their hands (heat) and squeezing them together (pressure), they made "marbleized" starburst rocks (which they could then eat).  It was fun, and hopefully memorable.
After we finished talking about the different kinds of rocks, seeing (and eating) the models, and seeing actual rocks of each of the 3 types, I put a bunch of rocks on the floor on a big tablecloth and let the kids look at them.  I bought 4 of our magnifying glasses, which they loved using.  I wish I had more!  I know we have 1 more, but alas, I could never find it.  Christine let me borrow a big 50 piece rock collection that someone retiring from homeschooling had given her, and let me tell you, that was a treasure!  It helped me so much to see samples of the different kinds so I could more easily (but not easily, LOL) identify rocks we have collected over the years from who knows where, but the kids loved looking at all the different rocks.  I brought in our granite cutting board too.  There was a small piece of unpolished granite in the rock collection, so I thought the kids would get a kick out of comparing the polished with the unpolished.  I also brought a sandstone coaster (sedimentary rock, of course . . .) from Colorado.  The grayish striated rock up top is one Bob brought back from New Zealand.  Pictures don't do it justice because it really is pretty.  Metamorphic rocks brought out all the "Eskimo" punsters in the house this past week--"That rock is gneiss ("nice"), but that one looks like shist".  Ha ha.  I must admit I have never been really interested in rocks in the slightest, but spending this past week poring over library books and websites, trying to identify rocks, I have become much more enthralled.  Now I can't wait to visit Colorado again and go hiking!  I missed out!

After finishing at TNT, I came back home and taught at Rivendell all afternoon, first chemistry, then memory work.  The most wonderful thing about getting my TNT teaching out of the way so early in the school year is that the chemistry chapters and labs this week and last were ridiculously easy and introductory, requiring almost no thought and preparation from me.  I keep telling the boys, it will get harder, but for right now, it is such a review of Integrated Physics and Chemistry 2 years ago.  And that has been so nice for me!  But now that geology is over for me (the kids still have 2 more weeks with a different teacher), I can devote more time to chemistry.  And everything else in my life, LOL.

No comments: