Mineral Identification: Mineral Scratch Test

This Mineral Identification: Mineral Scratch Test interactive also includes:

How can mineralogists tell a diamond in the rough from a chunk of table salt? Science scholars find out through an interactive that demonstrates the characteristics of minerals used for identification purposes. Topics include hardness, luster, taste, smell, and fracture tests for unknown minerals.

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Instructional Ideas

  • Provide rock samples and assign a scratch test lab to give pupils some practice
  • Extend the lesson by pairing learners for some mineral research to discover other information, such as abundance and where they are found
Classroom Considerations

  • Set aside extra time if you plan to have the class watch the 11-minute video in the Explore More section of the interactive
  • Register for a free CK-12 account to access the resource
Pros

  • The resource shows practical techniques for mineral identification that don't require expensive lab equipment
  • Teachers can use questions found in the content for multiple assessments
Cons

  • None