Earth Science K-12 Education Resources

Through the Canadian Geological Foundation and Vancouver Island University, the goal of this project is to provide geologic samples, guided lab activities and local inquiry projects to primary, intermediate and secondary students across British Columbia that align with BC Curriculum. The Earth Sciences Education Kits will be available through Vancouver Island University and will consist of geologic samples, accompanying lesson plans and answer keys at both introductory level as well as an advanced level. Educators will also have access to a compiled list and links to online resources under Earth Sciences Education Resources tab, including Earth Science Texts, Geographic Information System (GIS) Resources, Mineral and Rock Identification Guides, Printable Classroom Resources, Teaching Activities as well as Vancouver Island Field Trips.  


Earth Sciences Education and Inquiry Introductory Kit 

(Recommended for Kindergarten to Grade 6)

This introductory kit is aimed for the primary and intermediate learners with a focus on observation and inquiry based learning. 


Students will be able to collect and match pebbles found in a nature classroom with Eileen Van der Flier-Keller's pamphlet, A Field Guide to the Identification of Pebbles. This lesson can be repeated to guide inquiry of different geologic materials at many field sites. (Tim Stokes).

Minerals, the Building Blocks of Rocks

Students can observe the minerals Quartz, Plagioclase, Mica and other minerals to compare to granite rocks. These minerals are the essential building blocks of rocks and can be observed with a magnifying glass as a guided inquiry. (Sandra Johnstone)

Comparing Minerals 

Using a Venn diagram students can compare and contrast minerals by recording observable features. (Sandra Johnstone). 

Earth Sciences Education and Inquiry Advanced Kit 

(Recommended for Grade 7 to Grade 12) 

This upper level education kit is geared towards upper intermediate and secondary students that are studying earth sciences. All lessons and activities can be scaffolded or adapted to suit the needs of your students.

Introduction to Geology 

The Rock Cycle Diagram

Geology Introductory Vocabulary Word PDF

Mineral Identification 

Students will have the opportunity to observe physical properties with the purpose of classifying ten minerals within each kit. By observing colour, lustre, hardness and cleavage, the students will be able to identify each mineral sample. 

Mineral Identification Lab Word PDF

Rock Identification

Students will observe and record the physical properties of provided twenty rock samples and use this data to identify and classify igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks in this lab. By observing colour, streak, lustre, hardness, magnetism, reaction with acid (vinegar), cleavage the students will be able to guide the inquiry with a Rock Identification Chart to classify each sample and determine the rock family. 

Rock Identification Lab Word PDF

Rock Identification Chart 

The Identification of Common Rocks by Eileen Van der Flier-Keller and William J. McMillan. Province of British Columbia. Mineral Resources Division, Geological Survey Branch. 

Geological Time Scale and Fossils

This lab will consist of students observing and recording data on the provided fossil samples. Students will sketch three of the eight fossils, classify the type of fossil and relate the fossil to the Geological Time Scale (GTS). 

Geological Time Scale and Fossils Presentation

Geological Time Scale and Fossils Presentation Handout Word PDF

Fossil Identification Lab Word PDF

National Geographic's Earth: Making of a Planet Video

Earth: Making of a Planet Video Guide Word PDF