Observing Minerals

Minerals: Definition

a natural, solid substance found in rocks; each mineral has a specific chemical makeup


You can tell the difference between a dog and a cat by the way they look. Rocks can also be identified by the way they look. Rocks are made of minerals, substances that form in the earth from nonliving materials. Each type of rock is made of different minerals. A rock can be made of one or more minerals. Each mineral is measured by its luster, hardness, streak, and color.

How are rocks and minerals similar?


1. Look back at your rock journal, page one, and review properties that were shared by all the rock.

2. Open a new Keynote and write these properties on the second slide. Leave slide one as a title page.

3. Look at the three new objects (minerals) with your hand lens. Observe the minerals and compare them to the rocks. How are they similar? How are they different?

4. Record your observations on your keynote, keeping in mind which rocks have tiny pieces in them? What do you think they are? Do any of the minerals look like these pieces? Which rocks look like they might have little pieces of mineral A in them? Mineral B? Mineral C?

Mineral A: Record your observations on slide 3

Mineral B: Record your observations on slide 4

Mineral C: Record your observations on slide 5

5. On slide 5 record your thoughts about how rocks and minerals are similar and different.