The twenty-second annual Out of the Rock (OOTR) Workshop was held in the Boise, Idaho area in June of 2017. This well-loved event is sponsored by the Idaho Mining Association. Nearly 30 elementary and middle school educators attended to discover the National Energy Foundation’s rock and mineral posters, Rock Music and lessons from the Out of the Rock Teacher Guide.
The workshop showcased hands-on, STEM activities from the curriculum, such as making toothpaste from common minerals and panning for gold. Participants enjoyed a very enthusiastic mining simulation! They used the rock kits provided to complete scientific rock and mineral testing and hone their rock observation skills in a fun and delicious lesson called Candy Bar Cross-section. Teachers benefited from interdisciplinary lessons correlated to the Next Generation Science Standards as well as state standards.
Educators left the Out of the Rock Workshop with enhanced knowledge of the mining industry and an appreciation for the positive impact of rocks and minerals in their everyday lives. The curriculum and materials provided in the Out of the Rock Workshop will enable participants to teach these valuable lessons to their students for years to come.