Parkers Prairie High School

2007 Field Investigations Trip

Journal Assignments

 

Guidelines for Your Journals:

·         Put the name of each site (“stop”) on the top of your journal page.  Start a new page for each site.  Use the back of all pages.

·         Use a pencil. It writes best on the special waterproof paper in your journal.

·         On bus rides in between sites, it would be a good idea to write the assignments for the next site in your journal – or at least write a clear heading so both of us can find it later.

·         You received a single-use camera.  Use it to take pictures of each of the sites we visit.  Pace your picture taking so you don’t use all the pictures the first day!  You can include friends in the pictures of some of these sites, but please be sure they are appropriate and of good quality.  Trip funds will only be used to develop the film from this camera.  Attach the pictures neatly in your journal when you get them back on Monday, May 22rd.  (Be sure you turn in your camera at the end of the trip!) Add captions to each picture.

·         Be sure to complete assignments at each site. Check the checklist as you complete each item. Remember, we are not going back!

·         Your journal will be scored and counted as a large part of your science grade for third trimester.

 

Day 1 - Monday, May 14, 2007

 

On the bus, as we leave Parkers Prairie, write three learning goals for yourself for this week.  What do you hope to learn over the next five days?

 

Stop 1.1: Wind energy & electric power generation in southwestern Minnesota

 

Make at least three 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 1.2: Geology and cultural history of Pipestone National Monument

 

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.

 

During your walk to the outcrop, make at least three observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

At the outcrop, look closely at a piece of quartzite through a lens.  Draw what you see.

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Stop 1.3: Devil’s Gulch Recreation Area

 

Make at least three 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 you know 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, as we drive to the KOA, 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 15, 2007

 

During our morning drive to the Badlands, use your South Dakota map and agenda to trace our route for the next three days.

 

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

 

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 that you didn’t notice before?

 

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

 

On Door Trail at Badlands National Park:

 

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

 

Pick up and feel the soil.  Look at it through a lens.  Describe it.

 

Meet in groups to share your observations about the 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.)

 

Together, talk about some experiments you might do to further test this soil.  Record these experimental questions in your journal.

 

Why do you think very little is growing here?

 

Where is there plant life?  Why do you think it is in these locations?

 

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

 

Stop 2.3: Collecting activity and investigation: Rocks, Agates and Buffalo National Grasslands

 

Make at least three 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 16, 2007

 

Entering the Black Hills – Spearfish, SD

 

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

 

Make at least three observations about the rock outcrops we see on our drive to Devil’s Tower.  (Sketching one might help.)

 

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

 

At Devil’s Tower, make at least three observations and write at least one question about what you see, hear or feel.

 

On the trail, look at a talus sample through a lens.  Draw what you see.  How is this rock different from all the rocks we have seen so far?

 

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

 

How do you think Devil’s 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?

 

Stop 3.2: Homestake Gold Mine, Lead, SD

 

Make a quick sketch of the open mining pit.  (Don’t worry about the roads. Draw the rocks.)  You are looking at the inside of a mountain!  Write at least three observations of what you see.

 

Stop 3.3: Mount Rushmore

 

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

 

Make at least three observations of rocks along the black fence in the Parade of States.  Include observations using a lens.  Draw the crystal of one mineral of your choice.

 

On the bus, talk to your friends about what you observed in general about the Black Hills and the Badlands.  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 17, 2007

 

Stop 4.1: Wind Cave National Park

 

Make at least three 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 Neal. 

                            

Select one similar structure (like the shells, teeth, jaws, toes, hips, etc.) from two dinosaurs or two other related creatures.  Sketch both, then compare and contrast the structures 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 18, 2007

 

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? (Yes, you must have some!)