This Planet Really Rocks!: The Rock Cyclearrows.jpg

Virtual Field Trip
Science, Grades 6-8

Rocks are everywhere. These special objects contain important clues about the events that have shaped Earth since its creation, and the processes that are still acting on Earth and at its core today. Geologists study these clues to try to determine how our planet has changed in the past 4.5 billion years. This virtual tour will focus on the different types of rocks, their characteristics, how rocks are continuously changing from one type into another, and famous rocks around the world.

By participating in this virtual field trip, students will be able to:
  • Name the three major rock categories: igenous, metamorphic, and sedimentary
  • Identify famous rocky structures from around the world
  • Describe identifying characteristics of igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks
  • Use correct scientific terminology to describe the ways in which one type of rock can change into a different type
  • Complete a lab that will demonstrate the various aspects of the rock cycle
  • Create a story for a specified age group that details a rock's journey through the rock cycle.

Materials Needed
  • 1 computer with Internet access for each student or pair of students
  • Materials for Crayon Rock Cycle Lab (see The Rock Cycle tab)
  • Materials for Rock and Roll Through the Rock Cycle Story (see The Rock Cycle tab)

Get Started Here!

Topics For Investigation On Your Trip

Directions: Visit the pages below in the order specified and complete the activities on each page in order to learn about the rock cycle.

  1. Sedimentary, Igneous, and Metamorphic Rocks
  2. The Rock Cycle
  3. Geologists 101 (Extension Activity)