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‘Open Door, Explore’ Self-Programmed Wednesdays at The Manchester Museum Rocks and Minerals Gallery – KS4

(Booking Essential)

This activity enables your students to explore the specimens in the Rocks and Minerals gallery by relating them to priorities and the uses of those specimens in everyday objects. It also uses the gallery to find out some important concepts in earth sciences. The Rocks and Minerals gallery at The Manchester Museum contains a wide variety of rocks and minerals specimens from the local area, the rest of the UK and around the world. As well as the geological specimens, there are displays and models exploring the structure of the earth, plate tectonics and rock cycle. You will need to print out and cut out the correct number of cards and images for your group, along with the earth sciences worksheet and bring it with you on your visit to use this 30 minute activity Below is a guide to complete 30 minute workshop in the gallery space: 1. Allow your students to explore the gallery independently for 3 minutes. 2. Split your students into two groups and give each one the following 10 minute activity: a. Earth Sciences Explorer: Using the model of the earth and the information provided, challenge your students to complete the worksheet attached b. Minerals and Me! This activity enables students to find out about the range of uses for rocks and minerals in everyday objects. i. Using the ‘Rocks and their Properties’ cards and images provided below, students in groups of 2/3 have to match up the rock cards, with the images of its use. ii. Once the students have matched them up, they should then find the relevant specimen on the gallery to identify what this rock/mineral really looks like. 3. Swap the groups over, so they both have a chance to do both activities. 4. Share feedback and comments for the last few minutes in the gallery. Equipment required: Rocks and Mineral cards (print and cut out enough for your students) Earth Sciences explorer worksheet attached (Print out) Pencil Clipboard

Have you remembered to book your ‘Open Door, Explore’ Self Programmed activities with our Bookings Officer on 0161 275 2630? You can also request to use our lunch room for your group. Risk Assessments are available on the website. Also, please check for any suggested materials that you may need to bring with you on the day.

Earth Sciences Explorer 1. How old is the earth? i.e. when was it formed?

2. How do we know the age of the earth?

3. From the large model of the structure of the earth, describe the structure of the earth, including all the layers and what they contain?

4. Name the different natural phenomena that are caused by the movement of tectonic plates

5. What are the different kinds of plate boundaries and what do they lead to?

Rocks and Properties Cards

Fluorite Can prevent and reduce tooth decay

Fluorite Non-stick Impermeable Strong Does not rust Conducts heat

Clay (From chalk) Easy to shape when wet Strong and rigid when fired Impermeable when fired

Gypsum Easy to shape when wet Strong and rigid when set Quick to harden

Kaolinite Easy to shape when wet Strong and rigid when fired Impermeable when fired Thermal insulator

Malachite(Copper) Impermeable Flexible Can be easily moulded Does not react easily with water

Pyrite (Nickel) Can be combined with other elements such as cadmium or hydrogen to make an object with convert’s chemical energy into electrical energy. This generates an electric current that can power an electronic device

Quartz Hard Rigid Impermeable Transparent Can be made into different shapes

Silver Flexible Does not rust Quite rare Stays shiny for a short time then goes dull as it reacts with oxygen in the air

Hematite (iron) mixed with carbon or chromium Known as Stainless Steel Strong Does not rust Rigid

Corundum (Aluminuim) Light Easily shaped Impermeable to water Does not rust

Steel coated in cassiterite (tin) Impermeable Light Does not rust Compressible (Squashable)

Gold Flexible Does not rust Rare and precious Stays shiny for a long time

Hematite (iron) with hydrozincite (zinc) coating Limonite – Strong, rigid, can be easily moulded, reacts with oxygen to make iron oxide or rust Zinc sulphide - Does not rust

Copper Very good conductor of electricity Flexible Stretchy (if you pull hard!) Impermeable

Halite Soft Breaks up easily Dissolves in water Lowers the freezing point Adds flavour

Clay (from chalk) Shaped when wet Strong when fired Insulator

Muscovite mica and Silicon (from quartz) Mica – does not conduct electricity, has a high melting point Silicon – abundant, cheap, conducts electricity

Carbon rich fossil plant remains Burns easily to release energy Is often used to generate electricity Was widely mined in the UK, but no longer is as much any more

Pumice Abrasive Rough Easily available Light

Granite Strong Durable Heat resistant Bacteria resistant Stain resistant Colourful Shiny when polished

Marble Pattern and colour can vary Very attractive Very hard Can be sculpted



Waterproof (impermeable) Can be split into thin layers Hard

Soft Breaks up easily Can be mixed with water and sand

Uses of Rocks and Minerals Images

Rocks and Minerals Gallery (Science)  

You will need to print out and cut out the correct number of cards and images for your group, along with the earth sciences worksheet and br...

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