In the last two investigations students looked at weathering and how rocks break down into smaller pieces over time. In this investigation, students explore erosion, the process by which soil and sediment (the products of weathering) are moved from one location to another. Erosion is caused by gravity, wind, glaciers, and water in the form of ocean waves and currents, streams, and ground water.
It is important that your students begin to understand that rocks are made of minerals. Different rocks have different characteristics because of their minerals, the ways in which the rocks were formed, and the processes that acted on the rocks since they were formed. In this first investigation, your students will use their senses to investigate some of the physical properties of different types of rocks. They will then use their observations of the rocks to identify a particular rock from a collection.