Weathering of Minerals
This activity has benefited from a review and suggestion process as a part of an activity development workshop.
This activity has benefited from input from faculty educators beyond the author through a review and suggestion process as a part of an activity development workshop. Workshop participants were provided with a set of criteria against which they evaluated each others' activities. After the review, the authors developed a plan for revising their activities based on the feedback they received from their peers. To learn more about this review process, see http://serc.carleton.edu/quantskills/review_processes.html#2006.
This page first made public: Jul 26, 2006
Students determine the % change in mass of mineral samples that have been placed in a rock tumbler. They graph the relationship between the hardness of the mineral and the % change in mass. They then consider why some of the mineral samples do not conform the the relationship they graphed. They investigate the physical properties of the outliers and consider how the physical properties contributed to the rate of weathering, and what kind of weathering occurred in the rock tumbler.
Graphing and analysis of graphs
Massing and simple calculations
Context for Use
Graphing on Excel, understanding of the physical properties of minerals, kinds of kinds of mechanical and chemical weathering.
It is included in a unit on weathering and sedimentary rocks.
Teaching Notes and Tips
- rock tumbler
- beaker with acidic water, pH of 4 or 5
- beaker of water, pH of 7
- mineral samples: calcite, halite, quartz, and any variety of minerals that are available and expendable.
References and Resources
Controlled Vocabulary Terms
Resource Type: Activities:Lab Activity
Special Interest: Quantitative
Grade Level: College Lower (13-14):Introductory Level
Quantitative Skills: Graphs, Algebra
Ready for Use: Ready to Use
Earth System Topics: Solid Earth:Earth Materials:Rocks, Minerals
Topics: Earth surface
Theme: Teach the Earth:Teaching Topics:Minerals, Teach the Earth:Teaching Environments:Intro Geoscience, Teach the Earth:Course Topics:Sedimentary Geology, Mineralogy