Monday, 27 October 2014

Cross bedding and ancient currents

Today's new ELI is the last in our current series of sedimentary structures. It is 'Cross bedding and ancient currents; using cross-bedding to find the directions of ancient currents' Cross-bedding is a common feature of sedimentary rocks. The formation of cross-bedding can be seen in modern depositional environments and then related to similar structures in sedimentary rocks – an example of using the present to help us to understand the past. Cross-bedding can be used as part of prospecting in the minerals or hydrocarbon industries.
View other activities in the series on our website.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Identifying minerals in the dark!


Have you tried 'Identifying minerals – use your sense(s)! Minerals in the dark: identifying minerals when the lights fail'  In this activity, pupils use their senses other than sight to enable them to identify a range of different minerals.
Lots more ideas on our website.

Monday, 13 October 2014

Cross-bedding and way-up structures

Today's new ELI is another in our series about sedimentary structures. This one 'Cross-bedding' uses cross bedding to determine the way-up of a bed of sedimentary rock. It gives an introduction to the types of evidence which can be obtained from cross-bedding in sediments and in sedimentary rocks.


Other activities to show sedimentary structures can be found in the link to Teaching strategies on our website.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Interactive hydrothermal mineralisation

Interactive hydrothermal mineralisation; 'the rock with the hole' hydrothermal mineralisation demo. This ELI+ activity demonstrates how hydrothermal minerals form. It could be used as a simple illustration of the processes with minimal pupil involvement. But it can also be used as an interactive demonstration, to engage pupils in the thinking behind a scientific enquiry.


There are many more mineral teaching ideas on our website under Teaching strategies.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Seasons: the effect of our tilted Earth

The new ELI, published today, 'Seasons: the effect of our tilted Earth' is the last in this 'Earth in space' series. It involves an indoor demonstration which explains the changing seasons very clearly.

After watching the activity pupils will be able to:-
  • explain how the half of the Earth bathed in sunlight at any one time is experiencing day, whilst the other half is experiencing night;
  • point out and explain the day/night dividing lines of dawn and dusk;
  • explain why night and day are of equal length at the equinoxes;
  • point out and explain how polar regions are lit in the summer but are in darkness in the winter;
  • explain why winter and summer are at the opposite ends of the year in the other hemisphere, compared to their own;
  • explain why equatorial regions have no seasons.
Visit the website for more 'Earth in space' teaching ideas.

Thursday, 25 September 2014

ELI workshop in Brazil

During the recent "IV Regional Meeting of Geography Teaching " carried out at UNICAMP (State University of Campinas), Brazil by the Geoscience Institute, an ELI workshop took place.


The workshop was carried on by geography undergraduate students Bruna Campagnucci, Erica Rodrigues Soares and July Vilela under the supervision of Prof. Roberto Greco.


Geoscience in secondary schools in Brazil is taught within the geography discipline. The participants were all teachers from different Brazilian regions. In the 4 hours workshop the partcipants were able to experience many activities, interact among themselves and discuss which activities they could use in their geography classes. Exciting positive feedback was collected from the participants.

All the photos can be seen in the ELI Photo gallery  
The ELI translations into Portuguese are based in Unicamp

Monday, 22 September 2014

Take it or leave it? - the geoconservation debate

'Take it or leave it? – the geoconservation debate; when is collecting wrong, and when is it right? – try to decide for yourself'
Should you take geological specimens away from the site where they are found? This is a difficult question and it depends on where you are and who you are. Sometimes, removing a good specimen from a site is like removing a piece of evidence from a crime scene - it loses its context and vital clues can be lost; it may be best to leave it where you found it. Many sites also have legal protection; you would need to check their legal status before removing specimens. In this ELI, pupils are encouraged to ‘think like geoconservationists’ by cutting out the cards provided and discussing them with their group. They should then put them in the best place on the scale, also provided.
One of many interesting teaching ideas, all free to download, from our website.