Tuesday, September 16, 2014


Believe it or not, there actually is a “Collect Rocks Day.” It’s September 16, the same day as Play Dough Day, but several sources claimed it could be celebrated any day in September. So here are some ideas for collecting rocks today or any day. Rocks are everywhere and are a perfect spark for scientific investigations.

When you collect rocks or look at rocks, explain that scientists who study rocks are called geologists. Remind the children that they can be geologists, too!

Take a nature walk and invite each child to pick up ONE rock. You might need to limit the size to a rock that will fit in their hand. Take the rocks to the classroom and ask the children to observe their rock for one minute without talking. Go around the room and ask each child to make one statement about their rock. Encourage them to use descriptive words.
*Ask older children to write descriptions about their rocks.
*Place the rocks in a basket. Gently shake the rocks and then pass the basket around the class to see if each child can find his rock.
*Let the children sort the rocks. What was their sorting rule? Can they sort them another way?
*Check out a book on rocks from the library. Place it in the science center along with a magnifying glass. Ask the children to do research and identify the different rocks they collected.  (Remind the children to return the rocks to nature after they have finished investigating them.)
*Are rocks older than you or younger than you?
*Make a list of all the things that rocks are used for.
*Let children paint rocks or use other art media to make paperweights. 

*Place rocks in the math center for children to explore with the balance scale.
*For homework, ask families to take a walk and look for different kinds of rocks in their neighborhood.
*Encourage children to start their own rock collection with this idea. Cut an egg crate in half. Attach a pipe cleaner handle and use it to collect little rocks and pebbles.

And, speaking of rocks, we rocked at the NC AEYC Conference in Raleigh last Friday!  PLAY was the theme, and we reaffirmed that adults even learn more through play!

Thanks for all your comments about my blog a few days ago called “Be Wary!” This is what Linda Nelson @ Primary Inspiration sent:
So well said! Keep your teaching flexible, focused, and fun, and they will learn, regardless of what the experts-of-the-day happen to be promoting.