Saturday, May 19, 2012

Rock Classification

One of the best things about the end of the school year is that I feel like I can vary from our normal routine. And, honestly, the kids love it.

We read this book (picked up from a library book sale), which is pretty good. It's written with a very primary story- a bear family going on a hike- but the information is good, and the pictures of rocks are good. Plus, my class cracked up at the rock puns.

Then, we got the rocks out. Almost all of them are ones I just picked up outside a few years ago (but a couple have been given to me by students). While I did let them sort by sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic, first I just wanted them to sort by different qualities.

 We sorted by color, luster, hardness, weight, size, shape, and an attribute of their choice. Then, we circled around and took a guess of what each group might have sorted by. Of course, we tried to identify them as what type of rock they were- but some were hard to tell, so I mostly focused on them being able to justify their answers.

It was a simple, simple thing to do- but so much fun. They were so engaged- the whole time.

And the teamwork required- ohhhh, it was interesting. Most of my groups made me so proud- really using the things I've taught them to solve conflict and make decisions... and one person had to sit out for a little while. But most of them were great!

Kids will start to notice even the plainest of rocks. You should have seen all the rocks they showed me on field day!

I love when something we learn about makes them think outside of school, especially right before summer break. We only have FOUR days left of my first year in my own classroom!


  1. Glad the kids enjoyed the rock sorting activity. We've still got about three weeks left of school (the last day is June 13) here, and I will also be coming to an end of my first year in my own classroom (my first year of teaching). I've had a split class of grades 3/4, and next year I am supposed to have a straight grade 3 class. I'm already looking forward to it!

    Shelley @ Rhymes With Purple


    This is the 'Pin" that inspired the travel soap containers- Now that I use community supplies, it is more organized when we use crayons, markers, and glue:)

    I am your newest follower:)

  3. Have you seen the "crayon rock" activity? I was SO pumped to do it this year, but of course, the day that I was going to teach it turned into a modified schedule day, and I had to change my activity to fit out time constraints...long story short, thank goodness I am a flexible teacher! ;) Anyway, if you search for "crayon rock," you'll find free tutorials that tell you how to make each of the three types of rocks out of crayons, and the kids can take them home! I think I'm still going to try to work that activity in at the end of the year, because my kids were SO excited for it! I bet yours would be, too. :)

    ~Mrs. K. from The Teacher Garden Blog


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