Meet Selenite Gypsum – Our New Favorite Mineral!

Love, love, love, love! Did I mention how much I just love these new Selenite Sticks? Selenite is a form of the mineral Gypsum. When the long strands form together in groups, they take the form of these super, awesome, cute “sticks.”

Ask-a-Geologist #20: What can you tell me about the mineral pyrite?

Today I have a special guest with me. Her name is Piper and we are discussing the mineral pyrite. (Make sure you watch the video until the end to see our first blooper reel!)

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 Question: How to determine mineral hardness with the Mohs scale

Question: Based on Mohs hardness scale an unknown mineral scratched Apatite. It also scratches a steel knife blade but it cannot scratch quartz. What is the mineral’s hardness?

Salt: A Unique Mineral and Great Teaching Tool

Salt is a common mineral found worldwide called halite. Many people also call the mineral rock salt. The mineral is very soft in relation to other minerals and can form nice crystal shapes. The crystals can forms individually in crystalline masses. Rock salt forms as a common sedimentary deposit in areas of enclosed salt water. Salt is a versatile teaching tool because it has definite physical properties that are easy to recognize and you can perform in class and at home experiments as a demonstration.

How to Create a Rock & Mineral Collection

Are you fascinated with rocks and minerals? Do you want to start a collection for yourself or your kids but don’t know where to start and what types of samples to collect? I get lots of questions from people who want to start a collection but a daunted by the variety of rock and mineral types and the costs of some of these samples. Here are some great tips for starting your own collection.

Rock Detectives Kits are Weekend Fun for Elementary Kids

The Rock Detectives are the perfect mineral and rock kits for elementary age geologists. Each kit contains 6 or 7 rocks or minerals or rocks, a hand magnifier, and a printable mini-CD with 30 pages of geological information, rock and mineral identification activities, puzzles, experiments, projects, coloring pages, creative writing exercises and fun!

Rock Salt or Halite – It’s one Great Mineral

Salt is a common evaporite mineral that exists around the world and is often called halite or rock salt. The mineral is very soft in relation to other minerals and can form nice crystal shapes.

It’s New Rock and Mineral Week! Up first … Dolomite!

We are adding new rocks and minerals to our site every day this week. Up first is Dolomite!
Dolomite is a soft mineral of many colors. The mineral forms in ocean setting and hydrothermal veins
and is also associated with metamorphic rocks

Opal is Here!

Opal is a hydrous silicate that forms as a precipitate or a replacement of the skeletons of marine organisms.