If you are a homeschooling mom, lessons about the mining industry might not be on your current lesson plans… but they should! Mining is a fascinating industry and learning about it can open doors to “dig deeper” (no pun intended!) into geology, history, and economics. So how can you teach children about mining? Here are a few ideas to help you get started.
1. Take a Field Trip
The best way for kids to learn about mining is to see the operation up close. Many coal mines will allow you to tour the area with a special guide who can customize the information according to the ages and grades of your children. Your kids can see the equipment, touch the coal, and actually experience what it feels like to be down inside the cool, dark mines.
2. Start a Rock Collection
Part of mining is digging deep beneath the surface of the earth’s crust. As you teach about the various layers of the earth, you can introduce a variety of different rock formations. This is a great time to suggest that your kid start a rock collection. Create a diagram or a special book that shows pictures and descriptions of 15-20 different rocks. Then help your child search for as many of them as possible. You can label them and display them in a shadow box when you are finished.
3. Interview a Miner
To incorporate language arts into your mining lessons, arrange for your children to interview a miner. You can do this in person during your field trip or by phone if the field trip isn’t possible. Your child can then write a report about the interview and what he or she learned from the miner.
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