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Toronto Catholic District School Board

Our rocks and minerals unit started with a pre test. It's important to know WHAT we know before we begin. We based the pre test on the oveall expectations from the curriculm
 
Stepping into our Science Inquiry  
                                               
At the start of our work, Here’s what I know about….
 
How rocks and minerals are formed?
  
How rocks and minerals are used in day to day life?
 
How humans use of rocks and minerals is affecting the environment?
 
Next we looked at how to mine a chocolate chip cookie. See the pictures below.
 
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That led to great conversation about mining and the impact it has on our daily lives. From there we started to build knowledge - students researched and shared their knowledge about rocks and minerals that they learned.
 
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We talked more about mining and how it impacts different groups.

 

You can see different groups below.



 

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Next it was time to bring in the experts and we were able to arrange a presentation by Mining Matters.  Here's what we learned, and questions you still have.
 
Erica - "Make up is made out of Mica. "
Sharon" I know houses are made of minerals."
Grahan "Flourite is a mineral that is used to make toothpaste."
Dylan" Ontario has really high quality minerals."
Jack "Ontario's provincial mineral is amethyst."
 
 
Sandy "How many minerals are in Toronto?"
Alexis "How many people have died in mines."
Jessica "How does mining affect the environment?"
Austin "Do any minerals have special power?"
 
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The excitement continued to build, our knowledge continued to build and we are now ready to take what we've learned and have our own personal inquiry.
 
 
Gr. 3 and 4 students, pick one of the overall expectations above to learn more about. If you're REALLY motivated, come up with a specific question you want to investigate.
 
E.g  In a science unit on changes of matter, you might want to know about snow.  Your question could be  - How does snow form?  Or How does temperature affect whether it snows?  OR How does snow melt?
 
So now go out and find a question about rocks and minerals that interests you.
 
 
Final presentations could be the standard oral, or imovie, or skit, etc….  
 
We'll develop our success criteria but it will include
 
a knowledge piece  (class needs to learn new and interesting info)
 
research piece (have to cover at least three sources – books, internet and people),
 
presentation piece (hold our interest)