Tuesday, April 19, 2016

// // Leave a Comment

Metamorphic Rocks Lesson

This fun soil and rocks lesson (with an awesome activity and experiment) is perfect for kids in preschool, kindergarten, and even elementary school!



I put this lesson together for the Geology Rocks!  kindergarten through 2nd grade class I'm teaching at our homeschool co-op right now, and am super excited to share it with you!

As background knowledge, we already talked about sedimentary and igneous rocks.  We also talked about how rocks are made of different materials and did an experiment where we made limestone (a sedimentary rock) fizz by adding hydrochloric acid.

You are welcome to use any parts you think would benefit you and your kiddos, or the entire lesson!

So, here is the... 

Metamorphic Rocks Lesson:


Supplies:   rock samples (recommended: slate or shale, gneiss, limestone, marble, sandstone, quartzite), demonstration supplies (two different colored crayons, aluminum foil, hotplate or other heat source), edible metamorphic rock model supplies (microwave, graham crackers, M&M’s, mini marshmallows, cupcake liner)

Learning Goal:  Heat and pressure from inside the Earth and under oceans can change any rocks into metamorphic rocks.

1- Attention Activity:  Play a guessing game by giving the kids clues to figure out that you are a volcano.  For example, “I am made from the Earth.  I am very, very hot inside.  I make lava.”  What kind of rock is made when a volcano melts the rocks and then new rocks cool and harden?  (igneous)  Today we’re talking about heat again, but these are not igneous rocks.  Today, we’re talking about metamorphic rocks.

2- Discussion:  Metamorphic rocks are made when sedimentary rocks or igneous rocks get close to a volcano or other heat source, get hot, but do not melt all the way.  They can be twisted, squished, and compressed into a different shape, but they never melt quite all the way. They are a different rock than when they started, so they are a metamorphic rock.   

3- Make a "Metamorphic Rock" Lab



4- Notes & discuss:
Heat and pressure from inside the Earth and under oceans makes new rocks!!

Common metamorphic rocks:    

o   Slate can be metamorphosed into shale.  Shale can be metamorphosed into gneiss (with several intermediate steps).   {Show pieces of slate, shale, and gneiss.}

o   Limestone can be metamorphosed into marble.  {Show a piece of limestone and talk about how it changes into marble.}

o   Sandstone can be metamorphosed into quartzite. {Show a piece of sandstone and talk about how it changes to quartzite.}

5- Rock Observations: Let each child choose a metamorphic rock to make observations about.  Glue the observations into your notebook or lapbook.


6- Edible Metamorphic Rock Model

 Supplies:

1-      Graham Crackers (to represent rocks)
2-      Mini Marshmallows (to represent minerals that can soften and “glue” rocks together)
3-      M&M’s (to represent other rocks, minerals, and items that get caught in the rock layers)
4-      Cupcake liner (to represent the Earth…and to make everything easier!)

Steps:  Place the supplies in the cupcake liner and talk about them as you go.  Close the cupcake liner and microwave it long enough to soften, but not melt the marshmallows.  If they melted you would have igneous rocks!  Then smash the new “rock”!!  This represents heat and pressure from inside the Earth.  Open your new “metamorphic rock!”

Alternative Edible Metamorphic Rock Model (supplies not listed in the beginning of the lesson):

Supplies:
1-      Rice Cakes (to represent rocks)
2-      Peanut butter (to represent minerals that can soften and “glue” rocks together)
3-      Peanuts or M&M’s or both! (to represent rocks that are harder than the rice cake rocks)
4-      Cupcake liner (to represent the Earth…and to make everything easier!)

Steps: Place the supplies in the cupcake liner and talk about them as you go.  Close the cupcake liner and smash and squish it as hard as you can.  This represents heat and pressure from inside the Earth.  Open your new “metamorphic rock!”

Draw a picture of your metamorphic rock in your lab report and glue it into your notebook or lapbook!

7- Wrap Up & Review

Heat and pressure from inside the Earth and under oceans make metamorphic rocks.




Are you working on a rock unit or rock theme?  Be sure to check out my sedimentary rocks and igneous rocks lessons!  And watch for my Geology Rocks! unit--coming soon!!




I may share at any of these parties!




Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!!





0 comments: