NREC Online Lesson - Rocks and Minerals in Nova Scotia

Additional Activities

Activity #2

Supplies Needed:
Treasure Hunt Worksheet
Treasure Hunt Answer Sheet
Treasure Hunt Layout
Small Samples of: coal, granite, slate, iron
Hammer or small axe
Small amount of fertilizer
A piece of gyproc
A piece of concrete
A nail
Small plastic bags
Page for Sears catalogue or similar item
Permanent marker

Rocks and Minerals Treasure Hunt
This activity can be completed indoors within the confines of your classroom or it can be taken outdoors if an appropriate are can be located, i.e., a trail would be ideal. You will have to gather some materials together beforehand and then you can "salt" the trail you put together for your classroom or outdoors. A map is an ideal way for your students to follow and locate each of the items. Understanding and reading maps is a big part of what a Geologist has to be proficient at. The Treasure Hunt Worksheet will give you an idea of what you will be able to create with the resources you have available to you.


You will have to spend a little time pulling this activity together, i.e., packaging and labeling the samples, laying out the trail, developing a map, etc. However, once this is done, this activity can be repeated without too much preparation time in the future.

The first thing you need to do is to prepare the samples. It is suggested that the samples be placed in see-through plastic bags, so that they can be handled safely by the students and they would be protected from the elements if placed outdoors. For example, at Stop # 1, you would place a sample of coal and a sample of granite in a plastic bag. On the outside, you can print A on the "coal" bag and B on the granite bag. Your next step is to go through each of the remaining nine stops, preparing the various items and samples as necessary.

Next you have to choose your area for "Salting" (this is a term that is used whereby samples of minerals are placed in mines (under false pretenses), to encourage prospective buyers to invest in the mine). Your classroom can be used or any outdoor area as well. At each stop, you will have to clearly identify it by a number as well as placing the appropriate samples in the vicinity of the number. You don't want to hide them, or the students will become frustrated with the activity quickly. This way, in conjunction with the map you made and the numbered stops, the students can work at this activity independently.

Once the students have completed the activity, you can review the correct answers with them, detailing any that need further explanation.