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Comments and Teaching Tips given for Introduction to Minerals Comment on this resource

Oct 26, 2004
The topic of this lesson is an introduction to minerals for students in grades 5-8. The focus of this lesson is aimed at the Earth Science standard. The purpose of this lesson is for students to become familiar with the concept of minerals being made up of structures in certain patterns. I liked this lesson because it put an emphasis on cooperative learning which I think greatly impacts a child's motivation and learning. The students will be working in groups using sheets of paper to make a 3 dimensional shapes that are assigned to them. These students have no limitations on size however they should be approximate to other members in their group. Once individuals are done making their shape, the group comes together making a compact shape without altering the individual pieces. Each group will then take turns and describe the final shape they came up with. For the most part, each large shape will represent each of the original shapes which is when the teaher can relate this to crystal structure. I also found another website on this topic which gave a list of minerals in alphabetical order. The website allowed the student to pick any type of mineral they choose. Once they have picked their mineral, they will find out the physical properties, including color, shape, cleavage and a written out description with a picture of that mineral. I thought that this website might be advanced for 5-8th graders but I think it would be fun for them to explore. I would use this lesson plan to introduce the concept of minerals to my students because it allows them to be creative in designing their shape.