Southeastern Section - 60th Annual Meeting (23–25 March 2011)

Paper No. 11
Presentation Time: 11:40 AM


STEWART, Dion C., Department of Science, Georgia Perimeter College, 3705 Brookside Pkwy, Alpharetta, GA 30022 and POLLACK, Gerald D., Department of Science, Georgia Perimeter College, 2101 Womack Road, Dunwoody, GA 30338,

Fourteen kits, each containing 20 common minerals, five testing materials, identification keys, and instructions on “self learning”, were assembled for check out (“library”-style) by K-12 teachers of Earth Science and freshmen college students taking an introductory geology laboratory course. Each kit provides a hands-on approach to learning the common minerals through a physical property-based key. This unconventional approach (no instructor involved) allowed the K-12 teachers and the students to proceed at their own rate (no requirement to finish by the end of a scheduled lab period) and to review as frequently as they liked. For K-12 teachers, there was no need to register for a full-term college class to learn or refine their identification techniques and to begin to recognize the 20 most common minerals.

The kits were developed through a STEM grant in partnership with a local mineral club. The club took on the responsibility of using seven of the boxes for local K-12 Earth Science teachers. A geology laboratory instructor assumed this role for the college geology laboratory students. Surveys were filled in by all participants, and results indicated the kits were a great success. Participating geology students consistently found the mineral identification kits of great value when studying for their exams and attributed their success on the exams to use of the kits. These students performed one letter grade (9.7 points) higher than students who did not check out a kit. Every K-12 teacher utilizing the kits rated it as an “excellent” learning tool and a valuable component to improving their teaching performance.

  • Pollack_GSASE2011.pptx (2.2 MB)