Fourth graders in Linda Rossiter’s class have obtained a “crystal” clear knowledge of rocks, as they have been learning about and drawing mineral crystals.

This activity goes with the science core standard that states, “by observing rocks with a magnifying glass, I can draw the shapes and colors of minerals”. The students have been learning that minerals are the building blocks of rocks and they have been able to understand this through the processes of scientific investigations and design.
In addition, the class has also been discussing the five criteria that a mineral has to have, one of them being that minerals have a specific, orderly structure.

Mrs. Rossiter stated that she used this specific lesson activity because “I love to use art to teach and this standard was perfect for using drawing/colored pencil to teach about the shapes and colors of minerals”.

In order to prepare for this lesson, the class had been assigned to practice drawing different minerals, using a mineral reference sheet, for their homework the night before.

When the students are done with this rocks and minerals unit, they will be able to describe the differences between minerals and rocks, as well as be able to sort minerals by their shape, structure and color using a magnifying glass.

In the next week, the students will continue to further their learning through identifying properties of minerals and identifying certain minerals using specific tests.