How can teachers mentally engage students in order to promote a deeper understanding of rock classification systems? Hands-on activities, while essential, are not enough. Students must have “minds-on” experiences as well (NRC, 1996). Inquiry lessons that encourage investigating, questioning, discovering, negotiating, making claims based on evidence and applying information to new situations encourage the mental engagement required for learning. The activity presented here has students meaningfully investigate and come to understand similarities and differences between metamorphic, sedimentary and igneous rocks before being introduced to those terms. In doing so, it focuses students' attention on understanding rather than memorization. This article promotes National Science Education Standards A, B and D and Iowa Teaching Standards 1, 2 and 4.
Iowa Science Teachers Journal
© Copyright 2007 by the Iowa Academy of Science
Banasiak, Rachel and Beimer, Jody
"Rock On!: Providing Concrete Experiences Prior to Introducing Formal Geology Definitions,"
Iowa Science Teachers Journal: Vol. 34
, Article 3.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/istj/vol34/iss3/3