Tracy Barnhart of Mini Me Geology Interviewed on Lowcountry Live

A few weeks ago, I did an interview on Lowcountry Live, a local television show in Charleston, SC.  I really appreciate Lowcountry Live having me on the show!  Check out the video here:

Kristen McIann:        Well Dave, were you into collecting rocks when you were little?

Dave Williams:            I think we all know the answer to that question …

Kristen McIann:          Yes.

Dave Williams:           And yes I was, and I still am. Last week, I found cool piece of granite on the beach.

Kristen McIann:          So you are still doing it.

Dave Williams:           Yes. I still am.

Kristen McIann:          Actually, I was doing it last weekend as well. You don’t have to be in a classroom to enjoy learning about rocks and minerals and gemstones.

Dave Williams:           That’s right. Science is being taken to a new level with this kit, Mini Me Geology, created by a Mount Pleasant mom. We want to welcome Tracy Barnhart. Good to see you Tracy.

Tracy Barnhart:         Thank you very much, it’s nice to be here.

Dave Williams:           This is …

Kristen McIann:        We’re already going through during the break.

Dave Williams:           Yeah I know.

Kristen McIann:        It’s really cool.

Dave Williams:           It’s for kids of all ages really, and it teaches them a lesson and they have fun at the same time right?

Tracy Barnhart:         Yeah, that’s right. We really geared these towards lower elementary aged kids just because we came up with the idea when my son was in kindergarten. He just got out of second grade now, but we took some rocks into one of his kindergarten classes and the kids loved them. We were actually a little surprised at how much they liked them and so we started searching round and see what we could for that age group. And there really wasn’t anything. So we decided to develop them ourselves.

Kristen McIann:        Show some of these beautiful rocks in here. So I found my birthstone already, there’s the amethyst in there.

Dave Williams:           That’s really cool. What sorts of lessons do kids … I mean, I wasn’t thinking about rocks when I was five years old. What sorts of lessons do they learn from the kits?

Tracy Barnhart:         Well what it can really show them is all the different types. We have a mineral kit that you’re looking at, we have igneous rocks, metamorphic rocks, sedimentary rocks.

Dave Williams:           Oh cool.

Tracy Barnhart:         And what they can do is we’ve included a hand lens in each kit. The mineral kit also gets these street plates and then they can take the cards and it has a picture of each mineral or rock on it and it gives them ideas of how to test them to tell what each thing is.

Dave Williams:           Wow.

Tracy Barnhart:         And once they figure out what it is, it tells them where in the world they can find the rocks, if there’s uses you know for building like … granite’s often used for counter tops and just gives them a good idea of what these things can be used for.

Dave Williams:           And you were mentioning something that I didn’t even think of. You said maybe your kids can have a birthday party. Kids would be all over this.

Kristen McIann:        Oh that’d be a cool birthday party theme I think.

Dave Williams:           Yeah.

Tracy Barnhart:         That right, yeah we’re looking into coming up with a birthday party theme, we’re thinking of calling it like the rock and roll party. My husbands in radio, so.

Kristen McIann:        Right.

Tracy Barnhart:         So we’re trying to come up with something they can do with that. They can have all kinds of fun, that you can go on our website. There’s a section called Dig into Geology. And there is a special article for each kit which tells them exactly how to use the hand lens, how to focus it, how to sue the cards. They can actually download a special additional flowchart that they can use to identify the rocks in case they want to try something different than just the cards. And it gives them also areas where they can get experiments, that they can do with just household items.

Dave Williams:           Cool.

Tracy Barnhart:         So we’re trying to really make the website in addition to the kits, a real resource that parents and teachers and homeschool families can use to learn about it.

Dave Williams:           Two questions about that website. First, what is the address? And second, can you buy the kits on that website?

Tracy Barnhart:         Yes, the address is, and you can buy any of the kits on the website. You can also buy any of the individual samples by themselves on the website. We also have some other samples that are not included on in the kits that you can buy. You can also create your own kit.

Dave Williams:           Okay.

Tracy Barnhart:         If … A lot of home school families do that if they want to do a little bit of each type, they can pick any of the different rocks we have and they can create their own label, and we’ll print a special label for them. And there’s also, we just launched a new line for schools.

Dave Williams:           Okay.

Tracy Barnhart:         We’ve … They’re not in boxes. We package them a little bit differently, so a little more affordable for schools. They can buy them in sets of five and 15 to get enough for the whole class.

Dave Williams:           Okay.

Tracy Barnhart:         And we have some projects up there they can do with … So the kids can kind of create their own collection.

Dave Williams:           Now say the kids I mean, it’s gonna happen. You buy the kit and the kids lose one of the rocks. Can they reorder just one rock at a time?

Tracy Barnhart:         Yes, yes you can order any of the rocks …

Dave Williams:           Wow.

Tracy Barnhart:         You can order them singly or in groups, however you want to do it.

Kristen McIann:        I’ll just say though, kids do take care of their rocks. Damon will get one rock and he will take very good care of it. We were looking for garnets. I just saw you had one. It’s not in this collection.

>> Dave Williams:           Here it is, right here.

>> Kristen McIann:        Oh there it is. We were up at the Chattooga rafting and there was garnet beach, and we looked everywhere and we couldn’t find it. But that what we’re looking for.

Tracy Barnhart:         Yes.

Kristen McIann:        That was our weekend. Really pretty.

Dave Williams:           What’s really awesome because it does, it teaches the kids a lesson about where they learn or where they live, and the rocks that are there. So really cool.

Kristen McIann:        Great idea and also you have the magnifying glass that can really …

Tracy Barnhart:         We love that magnifying glass yes.

Kristen McIann:        Well Tracy that’s great. I think that’s a wonderful birthday party theme like you said as well.

Dave Williams:           Yes so, go on the website, order them there. What’s the website once again?

Tracy Barnhart:         It’s

Dave Williams:           What a great idea.

Kristen McIann:        Alright.

Dave Williams:           Well thanks Tracy.

Tracy Barnhart:         Thank you very much.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.