Minerals Lesson Plan for Elementary School

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Teach students about minerals with this lesson plan. Students will read a lesson explaining what minerals are as well as their properties and types before interacting with content in a hands-on lab.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define 'minerals'
  • describe the properties of minerals
  • identify and classify minerals


1 - 1.5 hours


  • Copies of the text lesson Types of Minerals: Lesson for Kids, one for each student
  • Mineral samples, one set for each group
  • Rice cereal
  • Marshmallow fluff
  • Sprinkles
  • M&M's
  • Large bowl
  • Cookie sheet
  • Cooking spray
  • Spoon
  • Clear plastic cups
  • Napkins
  • Pennies
  • Hand lens

Key Vocabulary

  • Mineral
  • Metallic
  • Ferrous

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.1

Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.2

Determine the main idea of a text and explain how it is supported by key details; summarize the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.3

Explain events, procedures, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text, including what happened and why, based on specific information in the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.4

Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words or phrases in a text relevant to a grade 4 topic or subject area.

Preparation and Warm Up

  • Before the lesson, pour rice cereal, M&M's and sprinkles into separate cups. Make one set of these for each small group.
  • Divide students into lab groups and distribute cups.
  • Ask students to label their notebooks 'Minerals' and make sketches of the three cups and contents.
  • In their groups, have students describe the contents in the cups and then write these descriptive words in their notebooks under each sketch.
  • Share and discuss the characteristics of each, then set aside for later.

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