A "Rock Hound's" Webquest
Geology Clues to Identify Rocks


This image is from 
www.nef1.org/outoftherock/ teachers/strike_gold.html

 

 If you want to identify a rock that you found, then you need to follow the clues.  To gather clues, inspect or test the physical properties of rocks.

Geology Clues to Identify Rocks:
General  |  Color  |  Luster  |  Hardness  |  Streak  |  Fracture

 

General Description of Your Rock Sample

Describe what you first see when looking at your rock sample.  Takes notes on the grain size, the rock's texture, flecks of different materials, and any other interesting characteristics of your rock sample.

 

 

Color of Your Rock Sample

Look at your rock and determine its color - white, black, green, clear, etc.

I want to learn more about the color clues of my rock sample!

Color  Good notes on the color of rocks
Color  Good chart that will help you determine the color of your rock.

 

 

Luster of Your Rock Sample

Look at the sample to determine if the mineral is metallic in appearance (looks like a chunk of metal) or non-metallic (doesn't look like a chunk of metal).

I want to learn more about the luster clues of my rock sample!

Luster  Good notes on the luster of rocks.
Luster 
Words used to describe the way light reflects off of the surface of a rock.

 

 

Hardness of Your Rock Sample

Scratch your rock with a known hardness to determine which is harder. Continue doing this with harder or softer minerals from the kit until the hardness is determined.


I want to learn more about the hardness clues of my rock sample!

Hardness  Good notes on the hardness of rocks.
Hardness  Very detailed information of determining the hardness of rocks.
Hardness  Great notes to learn about the hardness test.

 

 

 

Streak of Your Rock Sample

Grind a small amount of a mineral into a powder on a porcelain streak plate and determine the color of the powder. 

I want to learn more about the streak clues of my rock sample!

Streak  Good notes on the streak of rocks.
Streak  Very detailed information of determining the streak of rocks.

 

 

 

Fracture of Your Rock Sample

Break your rock and examine how it broke apart.  Was it Jagged or a smooth break? 

I want to learn more about the fracture clues of my rock sample!

Fracture  Good notes on the fracture of rocks.
Streak Very detailed information of determining the hardness of rocks.

 

 



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