Activity 2: Building a mineral collection.
Build a collection of 10 to 20 minerals. Some collectors focus on a single mineral, with specimens from around the world to show different forms. A quartz collection might include amethyst from Brazil, clear crystals from Arkansas, and smoky quartz from Pikes Peak. Other collectors concentrate on a local area and collect all the minerals that might be found in one quarry, city, county, or state. Still others opt for variety and collect a little bit of everything. Be sure to follow the basics of good curation: label each specimen and keep a catalog with key information about what it is and where it came from. If you are a distance student taking this program through the Internet, you will need to provide a digital image of your collection when it is done. For my collection's log book, I use an Excel spread sheet. If you would like to use something like this, let me know and I will email you one.
Activity 3: The tree rock types.
Describe the three rock types (igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic) and build a collection with samples of each type. If you are a distance student taking this program through the Internet, you will need to provide a digital image of your metamorphic rock collection when it is done. Optional: do a one-two page feature article on one of your metamorphic rocks. The artilce must include a digital image of your rock. The tree basic rock types are:
- Igneous. Igneous rocks are formed by crystallization of magmas, either deep beneath the surface of the earth (granites) or extruded (lavas, obsidian, ash). Examples: granite, basalt, rhyolite, obsidian, pumicde, scoria, diorite, gabbro, andesite, tuff.
- Sedimentary. Sedimentary rocks are formed by sediments (gravel, sand, muc, etc.) created by the eroding action of wind, water, or ice breaking down older rocks or by minerals precipitating out of water. Examples: mudstone, shale, sandstone, conglomerate, limestone, dolomite, gypsum, coal.
- Metamorphic. Metamorphic rocks have been changed by heat and/or pressure. Examples: slate (formed from shale), schist, quartzite (formed from sandstone), marble (f0ormed from limestone), serpentine, gneiss.
Draw crystal shapes and/or make crystal models with blocks of Styrofoam or with Styrofoam balls and dowels, with cardboard, etc. Some common crystal shapes are cubic, hexagonal, orthorhombic, monoclinic, triclinic, tetragonal, and trigonal. If you select this activity, contact me so that I can mail you supplementary materials.
Activity 5: Growing crystals.
Using a material like sugar, table salt, or Epsom salts, grow different forms of crystals. If you select this activity, contact me so that I can mail you supplementary materials.
Activity 6. State rocks, minerals, and gemstones.
Just as each state has its own flag, many have a state mineral or state rock. Find out what your state rock, mineral, or gemstone is and write a report about it for our club newsletter.
The due date for this merit badge is November 30, 2010