Inside a Geode

Inside a Geode lesson plan

Ready to peek inside an ordinary-looking rock? Your inside knowledge of gems and minerals becomes crystal clear with this sparkling geode project.

  • 1.

    During an investigation into type of rocks and minerals, invite students to learn about beautiful crystal formations called geodes. Found in hollow spaces of mineral deposits that look like ordinary rocks on the outside, these unique rocks contain crystals that form over a long period of time. Why do these form? How are they like other rocks? How are they different? Students find pictures of these beautiful natural formations. If possible look at them in a museum.

  • 2.

    Once research is complete, and has been discussed as a class, invite students to create their own geode replica. Studnets can use Crayola® Model Magic® to create an outer stone nodule for their crystals. Form white Model Magic into a thick, bowl-shaped pinch pot. Use a Crayola Washable Marker cap to create a textured outer surface on geodes.

  • 3.

    Roll out a Model Magic snake. Use Crayola Scissors to cut the snake into several short sections. Cut a point onto one end of each section, making four small angled cuts. These will become the crystals. Attach the blunt end of the pointed crystals to the inside of the geode. Fill the entire geode with these Model Magic crystals. Air-dry at least 24 hours.

  • 4.

    Students cover their work space with recycled newspaper. Use Crayola Washable Watercolors to paint the outside of geodes. Use a brush with stiff bristles to spatter a variety of colors on it.

  • 5.

    Paint the crystals inside the geode a light, pastel color by diluting the paint with water. Air-dry the geode.

  • 6.

    Use Crayola Glitter Glue to make crystals glitter realistically! Air-dry before displaying the geode collection.

  • 7.

    Working in small groups, students present their original geode model and share their most interesting facts retrieved during the research process.

Standards

  • LA: Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.
  • LA: Use information gained from the illustrations and words in a print or digital text to demonstrate understanding of its characters, setting or plot.
  • LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
  • LA: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.
  • LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions with diverse partners on grade level topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
  • SCI: Identify evidence from patterns in rock formations and fossils in rock layers to support an explanation for the changes to landforms over time.
  • SCI: Analyze maps showing a variety of Earth’s features and the occurrence of geologic hazards to determine the geographic patterns that emerge.
  • VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.
  • VA: Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning.

Adaptations

  • Possible classroom resources include: National Geographic Kids Everything Rocks and Minerals by Steve Tomecek; Smithsonian Handbooks: Rocks & Minerals by Chris Pellant; Jump into Science: Rocks and Minerals by Steve Tomecek; Let's Go Rock Collecting by Roma Ganz; The Rock Factory: The Story About the Rock Cycle by Jacqui, Lily, & Matthew Bailey
  • Students research the three main sub-divisions of rocks: igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic. What properties are used to classify each sub-division? What are examples of each? Use Crayola Model Magic to create an example of each type of rock.
  • Working in small groups, students sketch an outline of the world and countries. Students identify significant landforms in their home country. Students investigate the types of rocks found at each of the significant landforms identified.