Home School Families Benefit by Being Rock Detectives

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 on the Earth.” The answer is a resounding YES.

Five Tips for Teaching Mineral Identification to Middle & High School Students

Middle and high school students should have some knowledge about the identification of rocks and minerals from elementary school. Early in their school career they likely learned about the basic differences in mineral types using identification properties such as streak, color and hardness to tell the difference in samples. In middle and high school, students can elevate their learning to use more identification properties to tell the difference between minerals that have several properties in common.

Five Tips for Teaching Mineral Identification to Elementary Students

Identifying mineral samples can seem daunting to young students. The colors are often similar and they find it difficult to distinguish between the subtle differences in the samples. Teaching children a few basic properties with a small sample set can help them to begin to distinguish the small differences in the minerals and develop their confidence as they move into rock identification and into middle and high school where the mineral identifications become more complicated.