Teaching geology in a home school setting can be challenging for several reasons. Many home school curricula are faith-based and do not discuss geology at all because of the geological time scale. Others alter some of the facts about the science to fit their beliefs. I am often asked the question, “can home school teaching include lessons in geology without having to discuss the timeline or the origin of the Earth.” The answer is a resounding YES.
One of the best aspects about geology as a science is that there are so many areas to study. All kids should have a basic understanding of rocks and minerals. By understanding the difference in rocks and minerals and how minerals go together to make rocks, children will understand a little about the Earth’s crust and what they see below their feet. A fun and easy way for home school families to incorporate these types of lessons into their curriculum is to use the Rock Detectives kits from Mini Me Geology.
The Rock Detectives are a series of six rock and mineral kits. Each kit has 6 or 7 samples, a hand magnified to view the samples close up and a CD containing an eBook with 30 full color pages that includes rock and mineral information, sample identification activities, puzzles, coloring pages, experiments, an adventure story writing exercise for your geology detective, and activities including making a personal geologist’s field notebook and your very own rock collection box. The Rock Detectives kits are designed for kids age six to 12 because of the variety of coloring pages and puzzles aimed at younger children. However, the activities involving identifying the rock and mineral samples are applicable to any age group.
While some of the Rock Detectives eBooks do contain a geologic timeline, the scale is not needed for any of the activities in the kits and is easily omitted from lessons for families that prefer not to engage in a timeline discussion.
When you plan your home school lessons, you can choose which kit(s) you would like to study. In the series, there are three kits that focus on minerals (Mineral Mission, Crystal Experiments and Crystal Geometry) and three kits that focus on rocks (Sedimentary Sleuthing, Igneous Investigation and Metamorphic Mystery). You can use all of the kits in the series together or separately. Choose the kits based on your child’s interest. Minerals are the building blocks of all rocks, sedimentary rocks form in deserts and water bodies, igneous rocks form from volcanoes while metamorphic rocks are rocks that were transformed from one type to another.
If you have questions about incorporating the Rock Detectives kits into your home school curriculum, contact our owner and Professional Geologist, Tracy Barnhart at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Filed under: Education, Geology / Earth Science on September 1st, 2014 | No Comments »