Ask-A-Geologist #8: What is obsidian rock used for?

Hi everyone! Today I am back with another fabulous question from one of our readers. Today’s question is about obsidian. John asks: What is obsidian rock used for?

What is Mineral Luster?

The fact is that EVERY mineral has a luster. Geologists use so many terms for different types of luster is will make your head spin. Sometimes the luster is obvious and sometimes a little more subtle. Basically, luster is the appearance of a mineral’s surface when light shines on the sample. The absorption, refraction and reflection of the light upon the surface of the mineral will present as different luster.

Ask-A-Geologist #7: Are amethysts part of geodes or are the minerals in geodes different?

David asked: Are amethysts part of geodes or are the minerals in geodes different? Hi David, geodes can contain amethyst crystals. These unique samples form in open holes in sedimentary rocks such as limestone or igneous rocks likes basalt.

Ask-A-Geologist #6: What term is used for metamorphic rocks with a banded texture?

Hi everyone! Today we have another fabulous question from one of our readers. Today’s question is about metamorphic rocks. Jason asks: What term is used for metamorphic rocks with a banded texture?

Five Tips for Teaching Rock Identification to Middle and High School Students

Middle and high school students usually have a limited background in rock identification from elementary school. Elementary students focus on the three basic types of rocks and how they form. Middle and high school students can graduate to identifying different rock samples within the three basic types.

Ask-A-geologist Q&A #5: How Many Years of College Does it Take to Become a Geologist?

Hi everyone! This week we have a fantastic question from one of our readers about how many years of college you need to become a geologist. Hopefully, my answer will help you decide if this career might be for you.

Five Tips for Teaching Rock Identification to Elementary Students

Identifying rock samples is sometimes overwhelming to young students. Since there are three classes of rocks, each which have many different types, it can be very confusing when you start to explain the differences between each, especially because some look so much alike! If possible, teach the students about mineral identification before you move on to rocks, after all, rocks are simply a combination of one or more minerals.