2 Contents Event description Topics Outline Coaching tips Making tests Putting together a teamTest-taking strategiesResources
3 EVENT DESCRIPTIONA team of up to 2 will demonstrate knowledge of rocks and mineralsWriting implements, fingernails, hand lenses, and resources are allowedTest format will be stationsHCl will not be used during testingSamples will be taken from the official NSO list, unless otherwise noted
4 EVENT TOPICS Specimen identification Rock cycle Properties of minerals Mineral groupsEconomic importanceFormation and properties of igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocksClues to past environments
5 2007 Official Science Olympiad Rock and Mineral List Specimens must be taken from this listException: Tournament Directors may include up to five additional specimens important to their own stateTeams must be notified six weeks before the tournament
6 Minerals Similar to last year’s list Albite [Plagioclase] became Albite [Plagioclase Group]Feldspar [Orthoclase] became Feldspar [Orthoclase Group]Tourmaline became Tourmaline GroupQuartz [Chert/Flint] became Chert in the Rocks listMagnetite (spelling)
7 Rocks Igneous rocks are unchanged Metamorphic rocks are unchanged Sedimentary rocks:Chert has been addedDolomite rock may also be called DolostoneLignite has become Lignite Coal
8 OUTLINEA sample outline has been provided as a suggestion of how to cover the materialFind what works for your groupLook in texts, on internet, find syllabi from fellow teachers or onlineMake sure all of the topics are covered
11 COACHING TIPS Practice! A lot! Weekly quizzes Arranging specimens ChartsDiagramsBindersResourcesMnemonic aids
12 Practicing Give lots of quizzes – even if they’re only 5 samples! Have kids make quizzesUse flash cardsHave samples available at every practice and whenever kids want to study (study hall?)Have kids quiz each other and ask associated questionsPlay pictionary, hangman, charades, anything
14 Arranging Specimens By hardness By metamorphic grade By sedimentary gradeIn groupsBy compositionBy crystal structureBy originBy economic use
15 ChartsHave the team make charts for anything you or they can think of!Physical properties, origins, economic uses, etc.Excel is good for theseCombine chartsColor codeLaminate
16 Diagrams Igneous features Metamorphic features Sedimentary features Batholiths, dikes, sills, etc.Metamorphic featuresregional vs. contact metamorphismtemperature/pressure graphSedimentary featureslarge scale – formations, stratasmall scale – cross bedding, ripple marks, etc.
17 Binders Each student should make his/her own binder They must be familiar with it and speedyOrganization is keyProvide notes and handouts, but the best binders have things the students have found on their ownTabs and colored handouts helpHave binder checks and quizzes
18 Resources The student binder is the most important! A guidebook with which the students have practicedText of your choiceAdditional miscellaneous resourcesRock and Mineral list, colored and laminatedPeriodic tableCharts and diagrams
19 Mnemonics Lists: Sentences: Root words: Common crustal elements by weight: OSiAlFeCaNaKMgSentences:Mohs Hardness Scale – “Two Girls Came From Alaska Feeling Quite Troubled”Root words:Albite -- Albino
20 MAKING TESTS Choose specimens that have typical characteristics Put one or more specimens per stationPair supplemental questions with specimensProvide information if necessary (HCl, hardness, etc.)Provide equipment if necessary (hand lens, magnet, etc.)Label so specimens can’t be mixed up!Try to cover all topics reasonably evenlyWork out the traffic pattern and label itIndicate tiebreakers, but include them in the regular scoreOptional – include a section students can work on without being at a stationClearly convey expectations at beginning of test
21 PUTTING TOGETHER A TEAM Have more than 2 students per team practicingPair your strengths (both identification and concepts)Have students practice togetherChoose which resources will be usedMake sure they fit in the 12”x12”x3” boxBe sure the students will support each otherBoth students should contributeIf one is more dominant in the event, he/she should be a mentor, not just take over
22 TEST-TAKING STRATEGIES Know the event! (rules and format)Know the subject! (concepts and identification skills)Talk quietly (the competition may be listening)Don’t mix up the specimensDon’t leave your resources behindDon’t panic if a station is left unfinishedTake notes and try to finish while at another station
23 RESOURCES Rock & Mineral Guide Suggestions Try several to see what the students likeOne or two might fit in the 12”x12”x3” boxSuggestionsNational Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Rocks and MineralsISBNSmithsonian Handbooks: Rocks & Minerals by Chris Pellant (also called Eyewitness Handbook or DK)ISBN xA Field Guide to Rocks and Minerals by Frederick H. Pough (Peterson Field Guides)ISBN or X
24 RESOURCES Text Suggestions Aim for high school or freshman college levelSuggestionsPutnam’s Geology by Birkeland & LarsonISBNThe Earth Through Time by Harold LevinISBNEarth by Press & SieverISBNExercises in Physical Geology by Hamblin & HowardISBN xManual of Mineralogy by Hurlbut & Klein (advanced level)ISBN
25 RESOURCES Other suggestions Quick Study BarChart: Rocks & Minerals ISBNPeriodic Tablelaminated2007 NSO Rocks & Minerals listGeologic map of your stateDon’t forget the websites at
26 RESOURCES Places to find samples to study: High school geology classes Local colleges or universities (geology or education departments)Local rockhound societies or individualsState Geological SurveysSwap sets with other schools to vary samples
27 SUMMARY Assemble and get to know the resources Practice identification Assemble teams that can work togetherKeep a sense of humorHave fun! Rocks are cool!
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