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Rocks All Around

In this worksheet, students will be encouraged to find different types of rocks being used all around and to look out for them in the world around them..

'Rocks All Around' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:  Properties and Changes of Materials

Curriculum subtopic:  Comparing and Grouping Properties of Materials

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Wherever you are you will find rocks all around you!

 

For thousands of years people have found useful things to do with rocks. Rocks are used to make the walls and roofs of buildings. They are also used to make the kerbstones that line the street. Inside buildings they might be used to make hard-wearing decorative floors. Statues and memorials are made of rock, and so are fountains.  They're everywhere!

 

Stone columns

 

Next time you're out walking in your town or city, look around at all the different ways rocks are being used.

 

This worksheet looks at some of the different types of rocks and the ways they are put to use. 

Which of these types of rock do you think might be good for making roof tiles?

 

sandstone

slate

granite

chalk

Why do you think marble is often used for decorating buildings?

 

Marble tiles

It is hard-wearing and attractive

It is inexpensive

It is too heavy to use for anything else

Sandstone has been used as a building material for thousands of years.

 

What properties do you think make it good for this purpose?

 

Sandstone blocks

It is soft and easy to carve

It is light and easy to transport

It comes in many different colours

Here is some chalk.  It's a rock that is especially found on the south coast of England.

 

Chalkstone

 

What factors do you think make chalk unsuitable for covering a roof?

It is too soft

It is too expensive

It is permeable (lets water soak through)

Here is concrete being used to construct a building.

 

Concrete building

 

Is concrete a type of rock?  True or false?

true

false

Diamonds are very attractive and hard-wearing.

Diamond

Why do you think diamonds aren't used as parts of buildings?

They aren't big enough to build with

They are too expensive

They would be too dazzling

Oh dear!  Georgia was kicking her football against the side of the house and she hit the window by mistake:

 

Broken glass

 

Glass is mainly made of a type of rock that is ground up into small particles. 

 

Do you know what sort of rock it is made of?

gravel

quartz

chalk

sand

This is a pile of gravel:

 

Gravel

 

When gravel, which is made of small pieces of rock, is mixed with another substance, it makes the hard roads we drive on.

 

What is the gravel mixed with?

tar

mud

cement

industrial glue

Here is a statue:

 

Statue

 

Limestone is a type of rock that is often chosen to make statues from.

 

Pick TWO factors that might make limestone good for making statues.

It is permeable (let's water through)

it is fairly soft

It is hard-wearing and attractive

it is fairly common

  • Question 1

Which of these types of rock do you think might be good for making roof tiles?

 

CORRECT ANSWER
slate
EDDIE SAYS
Slate is best because it can be split easily into sheets. Sandstone and chalk let water through (they are permeable) and granite would be too heavy for a roof.
  • Question 2

Why do you think marble is often used for decorating buildings?

 

Marble tiles

CORRECT ANSWER
It is hard-wearing and attractive
EDDIE SAYS
Marble is valued for decoration because it can be polished to a high shine and doesn't wear away easily.
  • Question 3

Sandstone has been used as a building material for thousands of years.

 

What properties do you think make it good for this purpose?

 

Sandstone blocks

CORRECT ANSWER
It is soft and easy to carve
EDDIE SAYS
Even though it is soft and fairly easy to work with, sandstone can also be long-lasting and weather-resistant. It is permeable to water (lets water through slowly) and this has meant that where the rain has been slightly acidic, due to pollution, sandstone blocks used in buildings have been "eaten away" by the rain.
  • Question 4

Here is some chalk.  It's a rock that is especially found on the south coast of England.

 

Chalkstone

 

What factors do you think make chalk unsuitable for covering a roof?

CORRECT ANSWER
It is permeable (lets water soak through)
EDDIE SAYS
A roof that soaks up water wouldn't be much use when it rains! It's also pretty soft stuff (that's why chalk cliffs erode pretty quickly). But it's brilliant for fossils!
  • Question 5

Here is concrete being used to construct a building.

 

Concrete building

 

Is concrete a type of rock?  True or false?

CORRECT ANSWER
false
EDDIE SAYS
Concrete is an artificial stone made by mixing sand, gravel, water and cement. It is widely used as a building material. It's amazing stuff, especially when it's reinforced with steel, and is responsible for many of the incredible structures of the 21st century.
  • Question 6

Diamonds are very attractive and hard-wearing.

Diamond

Why do you think diamonds aren't used as parts of buildings?

CORRECT ANSWER
They are too expensive
EDDIE SAYS
Diamonds are valued as gemstones. They may not be used as building stones but they are used to grind and polish other stones because they are so hard wearing.
  • Question 7

Oh dear!  Georgia was kicking her football against the side of the house and she hit the window by mistake:

 

Broken glass

 

Glass is mainly made of a type of rock that is ground up into small particles. 

 

Do you know what sort of rock it is made of?

CORRECT ANSWER
sand
EDDIE SAYS
Amazingly, glass is mainly made of sand. Not just any old sand., like from the nearest beach, but special sorts of sand that, when mixed with other substances, can be melted to make glass. Did you know that the Romans had worked out how to make glass?
  • Question 8

This is a pile of gravel:

 

Gravel

 

When gravel, which is made of small pieces of rock, is mixed with another substance, it makes the hard roads we drive on.

 

What is the gravel mixed with?

CORRECT ANSWER
tar
EDDIE SAYS
In fact, it is molten tar that glues the pieces of gravel together to make our roads. The gravel is very hard-wearing but even so, with the increasing amounts of traffic, our roads are wearing away faster than they can be mended!
  • Question 9

Here is a statue:

 

Statue

 

Limestone is a type of rock that is often chosen to make statues from.

 

Pick TWO factors that might make limestone good for making statues.

CORRECT ANSWER
it is fairly soft
It is hard-wearing and attractive
EDDIE SAYS
Whilst being fairly common should mean that it's not too expensive, it's probably not the #1 factor on the sculptor's mind. They want a material they can carve (needs to be reasonably soft) and something that lasts a long time and looks good. If it let water inside it, that would be a bad thing - it would freeze in winter and break the statue!
---- OR ----

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