Lunar and Planetary Institute






Activities about Rocks and Soils

Edible Rocks
Students practice observation skills by making a connection between the familiar (candy bars) and the unfamiliar (rock samples).
Edible “rocks” are used in a scientific context, showing students the importance of observation, teamwork and communication skills. In everyday terms, students draw and describe the food. Students will pair their observations with short descriptions
that are in geologic “Field Note” style.

Describing Soils
Students describe, sort, and define soils on Earth, using screens and magnets.

The Scoop on Moon Dirt
Students compare how soil forms on the Earth and Moon. They examine different soil samples and compare them to Lunar Soil Simulant. They explore how water, wind, and impactors help to make soil.

The Rock Cycle
This activity combines the concept of Earth’s rock cycle with the characteristics of other planets in the solar system. After learning about Earth’s rock cycle and the basic characteristics of objects in the solar system, students can consider how to extend this concept to other objects. The student’s goal is to create a rock cycle for each selected solar system object.