South Dakota Field Investigations Trip

Journal Assignments

 

Guidelines for your journals

 

Day 1 - Monday, May 15, 2006

 

On the Bus:

 

Write three learning goals for yourself for this week.  What do you hope to learn over the next five days?

 

Stop l.1 Wind energy & electric power generation in southwestern Minnesota

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

Discuss some advantages and disadvantages of wind energy.  Is wind energy the answer to our energy problems?  Why or why not?

 

Stop l.2: Geology and cultural history of Pipestone National Monument

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see.

 

You will see signs of “cross-bedding” at Pipestone.  Think in advance what cross-bedding might look like and write your prediction in your journal.

 

Find a piece of talus. How do you think this rock got here?  Make a hypothesis and support your explanation with evidence.  (A drawing might help!)

 

You are a grain of sand. Describe your passage through time as you become quartzite?

 

Draw an example of cross-bedding and explain how you think it was formed.

Stop 1.3: Devils Gulch Recreation Area

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

How do you think this gulch formed?  What is the evidence that led you to this hypothesis?

 

Pick any rock other than quartzite – would it erode faster or slower than quartzite.  Explain!

 

Would the gulch look the same if it was made from your rock?  How would it be different?

 

What do Devil’s Gulch and Pipestone have in common?  How are they different?

 

On the bus in your groups, discuss how the landscape has changed since we left Parkers Prairie.  Make a list of these changes.  (Include detailed observations of the plants, animals, soils, etc.)  What are some earth science reasons why the landscape is different?

 

End of day reflection: What was cool about today?  What was something interesting that you learned about geology today?

 

 

Day 2 - Tuesday, May 16, 2006

 

Stop 2.1: Chamberlain Rest Stop

 

Make a sketch of the river valley as your look upriver from the bluff.  How do you think this valley was formed?  How do you know? 

 

Stop 2.2: Badlands National Park, Big Badlands Overlook

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see.

 

Pick an area and sketch it in your journal.  What details did you observe while making your drawing?

 

Pick a quiet place to sit and write about what you see and feel for 5 minutes.  You must do this alone!

 

Why do you think is this area is so cool-looking? 

 

Stop 2.3: Badlands National Park, Door Trail:

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

Soil observations:

Pick up and feel the soil.  Describe it.

What tests could you run to find out more about this soil? 

How is it different from the soil in Parkers Prairie?  (Mrs. Schoeneck has a bag of soil from Parkers that you can use for comparison.)

Why is nothing growing here?

 

How did this area form?  Make a hypothesis and provide at least two pieces of evidence to support it.

 

Stop 2.4: Collecting activity and investigation: Agates & fossils, Buffalo National Grasslands

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

Collect at least 5 different stones. Why do you think the rocks you picked were cool enough to collect?

 

Get in a small group with other students. Compare your rocks and try to find two that are the same.  What evidence do you have for thinking so?

 

What do you think it would be like to stand here 10,000 years ago? Include sounds, sites, colors, and smells in your description.

 

End of day reflection: What was cool about today?  What was something interesting that you learned about geology today?

 

Day 3 - Wednesday, May 17, 2006

 

Entering the Black Hills – Spearfish, SD

 

Observe the rock formations as we enter the Black Hills.  How are these rock formations different from the Badlands?

 

Stop 3.1: Devil’s Tower: Igneous rock and area plate tectonics

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

Compare the rock material at the tower with the rocks you observe in the valley from the overlook.  Describe both in your journal.  How are they different?

 

How do you think this tower was formed?  Write a hypothesis in your journal and give some reasons to back it up!

 

Spearfish Canyon (We will only drive through this area!)

 

How do you think this canyon was formed?  How do you know it was not formed by a glacier?  How are these rock formations different from Devil’s Tower and the Badlands? 

 

Stop 3.2: Homestake Museum, Lead, SD

 

Stop 3.3: Mount Rushmore

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

On the bus, talk to your friends about what you observed in general about the Black Hills and the Badlands.  How has the landscape changed?  Why do you think these two areas are so different?  Write your thoughts and observations in your journal.

 

Quaquaversal is a cool geology word.  Write the word in your journal and what you think it means.  Find out what it really means and what it has to do with the Black Hills.  Say it ten times really fast!

 

End of day reflection: What was cool about today?  What was something interesting that you learned about geology today?

 

Day 4 - Thursday, May 18, 2006

 

Stop 4.1: Wind Cave National Park

 

Make some observations and write at least one question about what you see.

 

You are a water drop.  Describe your path from the surface of the ground until you reach the floor of Wind Cave.  Be sure to include the rock and soil layers you will have to travel though in order to reach the cave floor.

 

What was the most interesting thing you learned at Wind Cave?

 

Stop 4.2: Black Hill Geology Research Institute. 

 

Look around the museum first – Write a question for Peter and/or Neal.           

                                   

Find fossils of two dinosaurs or two other related creatures.  Sketch both, then compare and contrast the two animals or a part of the two animals.

 

End of day reflection: What was cool about today?  What was something interesting that you learned about geology today?

 

Day 5 - Friday, May 19, 2006

 

On the bus, write some comments about why this trip was important to you.  How do you think you will remember these last five days?

 

Look at the learning goals you wrote on the first day.  Did you meet or exceed these goals?  Explain!

 

After five days of field investigations, what new or unanswered questions do you have?