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K-3, Unit Five "Rock Park"

Introduction & Teacher Background
If Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park (WGIPP) is one thing, it is a place defined by rocks. Mountains and glacially-carved valleys are the most obvious features of the park. The span of time in geologic terms is a difficult concept for adults, let alone children. For primary grade students, the abstract complexity of geologic concepts is completely out of reach.

However, the study of rocks has an advantage for young students- rocks are colorful, interestingly shaped, obvious to see all over the ground, and they don't move much! The "groundwork" for geologic literacy is found in the way children observe and sort rocks naturally. Our job as educators is to introduce some structure to these natural explorations. Click here for more information from our website about the geology of Glacier.


Activity 1: Rock Ranking
Grades: 1-3
Methods: Students will sort rocks in various ways from a river gravel bar.
Time: 2-3 sessions of 30 minutes
Subjects: Earth science, mathematics, physical science

Activity 2: Rock Stories
Grades: 1-3
Methods: Students role-play a guided imagery story of the rock cycle.
Time: 30 minutes
Subject Areas: Language arts, earth science

Did You Know?

The Robert Fire of 2003

Did you know that 2003 was one of the hottest recorded years in Glacier National Park's history? That year, approximately 144,000 acres burned from multiple wildfires.