1
Few schools are within walking distance of a federally designated wilderness. However, many schools are within walking distance of land with wild elements. Students can look for examples of places with wild elements on or near their school grounds. Then they can duplicate the activity in a wilder...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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2
Published in 2005
Students have the opportunity to take a core sample of their local soil. Using PVC piping, a section of soil is pulled up, allowing students to observe the soil's different layers. Those layers are then separated and identified. The identification process helps students understand what elements make...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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3
Different types of soil have different capabilities for retaining rainwater. When the soil in an area cannot hold enough rainwater, flooding occurs. Students in this activity measure the amount of water different soil types can handle. Following the activity, students discuss soil and flooding...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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4
Just as your GPS helps you make sure you’re getting from point “a” to point “b” correctly, maps help scientists draw important conclusions and visualize important concepts they study. The right map can help a petroleum engineer find the best drilling site, or help a meteorologist make the...
Grade Level   6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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5
Density is an intrinsic physical property of minerals that relates to the composition of the mineral and to the pattern in which the mineral’s atoms are arranged. “Intrinsic” means that the property is the same for the mineral, no matter what the size or shape of the sample. In this activity,...
Grade Level   6 7 8 9
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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6
"""""Soil porosity"""" refers to the amount of pore, or open space between soil particles. Pore spaces may be formed due to the movement of roots, worms, and insects; expanding gases trapped within these spaces by groundwater; and/or the dissolution of the soil parent material. Soil texture can also...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8 9 10
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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7
"Water that accumulates beneath the surface of the Earth is called groundwater. Contrary to popular belief, groundwater does not form underground """"rivers,"""" but is actually found in the small spaces and cracks between rocks and other material such as sand and gravel. Groundwater supplies about...
Grade Level   4 5 6 7 8 9
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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8
"""""Thar's gold in them thar classrooms!"""" History meets Earth science in the fun, hands-on activity below. Students pan for gold and other minerals, experiencing what early settlers of the Western US went through. Some gold deposits, or lodes, are found in veins of fractured rock. After millions...
Grade Level   K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
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9
The JOIDES Resolution (JR) has physical dimensions unlike most oceangoing vessels. Why? So that scientists can sail nearly anywhere in the world to drill for samples of rocks and sediment from below the seafloor — in hopes of discovering clues about Earth’s history and structure, life in the...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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10
Core samples are small portions of a formation taken from an existing well and used for geologic analysis. The sample is analyzed to determine porosity, permeability, fluid content, geologic age, and probable productivity of oil from the site. Drilling is the only way to be sure that oil and gas...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8 9
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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11
"The purpose of this activity is to give the player an introduction to the economics of mining. Each player buys """"property,"""" purchases the """"mining equipment,"""" pays for the """"mining operation,"""" and finally pays for the """"reclamation."""" In return, the player receives money for the...
Grade Level   4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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12
This activity allows students to experience what rocks and minerals go through during the rock cycle. The activity explains how to manipulate chocolate using heated water and a knife into different states representing metamorphic, igneous, and sedimentary rocks. Chocolate can be ground into small...
Grade Level   3 4 5 6 7 8
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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13
"To allow students to produce a """"marketable"""" product made from minerals that are used by most people every day. Both the abrasive and cleansing compounds found in toothpaste, calcium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate, are minerals. Students make their own toothpastes with different colors and...
Grade Level   3 4 5 6 7 8
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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14
The JOIDES Resolution is an amazing ship that contains all the equipment necessary to drill into the ocean floor for samples of rock and sediment: a derrick, drill pipe, drilling tools, and drill bits. Once the cylindrical core sample arrives on the rig floor, the drill crew passes the 10 m core to...
Grade Level   5 6 7 8
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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15
Petroleum geologists study Earth's rock layers, looking for places where oil-generating rocks might occur. These geoscientists try to determine whether geologic structures trap the oil in reservoirs which can be drilled and pumped to recover the oil. One such type of trap occurs when rocks have been...
Grade Level   7 8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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16
What factors affect how easily a fluid can move through sediments? How is this flow rate connected to oil production? Many people think that oil lies in big pools below Earth's surface. Oil actually is located in the pores within rocks (called “source rocks”). When the pores are...
Grade Level   8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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17
Petroleum geologists play a vital role in locating energy resources. They use a variety of methods to collect the data they need to find reservoirs of oil and natural gas. When they find these reservoirs, petroleum geologists need to calculate their volume. They also need to estimate how much they...
Grade Level   6 7 8 9 10
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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18
"Since 1970, oil and natural gas have provided more than half of the energy used each year in the United States to produce electricity, heat, transportation fuels, and many everyday products from balloons to vitamins. Oil and natural gas are forms of petroleum, a word that literally means...
Grade Level   8 9 10 11 12
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19
Natural gas, which is mostly methane, is an energy resource used for generating electricity and heating, powering transportation, and manufacturing products. Right now, one-quarter of the world's energy comes from natural gas. Natural gas formation, one of the processes occurring on our...
Grade Level   6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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20
"Since 1970, oil and natural gas have provided more than half of the energy used each year in the United States to produce electricity, heat, transportation fuels, and many everyday products from balloons to vitamins. Oil and natural gas are forms of petroleum, a word that literally means...
Grade Level   6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Classroom Activities Curricula and Instruction
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