Earth image Minerals Assignment

Dr. Pamela Gore
Georgia Perimeter College

It would be best if this lab exercise could be done when the class has assembled for a meeting under the direction of the course leader. Students are encouraged to work on this lab in small groups, if possible. But it is certainly possible to work on this, on your own, as well. Feel free to call or email for assistance, if needed.

Getting started:
  1. Read your web course notes on Minerals.
  2. Read Chapter 2 (Minerals: Building Blocks of Rocks) - p. 29-49 in your textbook (11th edition)
    (or 9th edition, Chapter 1, p. 19-37).
  3. Read Exercise 1 (The Study of Minerals) - p. 3-18 in your lab manual.
  4. To do this exercise, you will need:
    1. Ward's "Know Your Minerals" Collection
    2. Ward's Rock and Mineral Test Kit
    3. Hopefully you will have access to dilute hydrochloric acid from your school chemistry lab. Or you may purchase a small container of muriatic acid at a hardware store. You will need to follow any warnings or directions on the package. This is acid. It will burn through your clothing and can injure your skin or eyes. We recommend that you use safety goggles and latex or vinyl gloves when dealing with hydrochloric or muriatic acid. Alternatively, you can work with your instructor and he or she should be able to tell you which of the samples will react with hydrochloric acid.


  1. Follow the instructions with your mineral collection to test and identify your unknown samples.
    If you would like to number your samples after you are sure you have identified them correctly, a good way to do it is to type numbers on a page in a very small font such as 8, and then take a hole punch and punch out the number. Use Elmer's glue to apply the number to a corner of the sample on the worst looking side. Do not cover up the best looking side of the sample.
  2. In your lab manual, Exercise 1 and your mineral set, answer the following questions using the samples in your mineral collection: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, (skip 8 and 9), 10, (skip 11), 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20.
    For question 7 dealing with streak, check the metallic or submetallic minerals first.
  3. Go to the website for the lab manual,
    Go to Chapter 1, The Study of Minerals.
    Question 1 - Some helpful links - The Georgia Department of Natural Resources
    See mineral resource data at
    Map of mines in GA
    Georgia stone quarries
     Minerals Yearbook: The Mineral Industry of Georgia. See the map of Georgia with symbols for minerals. The key is at the bottom of the page.
    Scroll down to learn about minerals in Georgia..

    1. List the top four nonfuel raw mineral commodities in Georgia. (Second paragraph).
    2. What was the value of the kaolin mined in Georgia?
    3. Where is the kaolin mined in Georgia? (You can give county names).
      (Hint: Check the map and legend.)

  4. Go back to the online lab response form.
    Answer question 2. Identify and locate information on your home state's (or a nearby state's) state mineral. You can learn about the state mineral, state gem, and state fossil on this web page.
    See also
    Question 3 (optional - extra credit)- use MMineral Resources Spatial Data and Interactive Map
  5. Write and submit an application for a Mini-Grant from the Georgia Mineral Society to fund things for your Earth Science classroom. They provide funds for:
    • Purchase of Mineral/Rock samples or collections
    • Purchase of software for Earth science subjects
    • Materials and expenses for classroom experiments
    • Computer or GPS hardware purchases
    Applications should be postmarked ASAP.  Deadlines may be extended.  Apply even if the deadline is past.  Funds are distributed every year, even if the page has not been updated.
    Write and submit an application for a Mini-Grant from the Atlanta Geological Society, if you live in one of the eligible counties in the greater Atlanta area, to fund things for your Earth Science classroom.
  6. Extra Credit: Plan a fieldtrip to the Tellus Museum in Cartersville.

  7. Extra Credit: Complete the review sheet on p. 17- 18 in your lab manual.

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Page created by Pamela J.W. Gore
Georgia Perimeter College,
Clarkston, GA

Page created May 5, 2005
Updated May 24, 2006
Updated June 29, 2009