Marvellous Minerals - Stage 3 Teacher Notes

Marvellous Minerals is a self-guided program for Stage 3 students which takes place in the Albert Chapman Collection and Planet of Minerals exhibitions on Level 1.


Photographer: Carl Bento © Australian Museum

Before your visit

Syllabus links

The activities link with these outcomes of the NSW Board of Studies Stage 3 Science and Technology K-6:

Content Strands:
  • Earth and its surrounds: there are many physical phenomena which change the environment

Learning processes:
  • Students will develop their knowledge and understanding of the process of investigation that people use to develop insights into the natural and made environments
  • Students will be able to investigate natural and made environments
  • Making detailed observations using appropriate technologies
  • Identify data which support a particular prediction modify their understanding in light of their investigation
Values and Attitudes
  • Show informed commitment to improving the quality of society and environment
  • Develop rational and creative thinking

Pre-visit activities

To make the most of your visit to the exhibition we recommend that you prepare your students beforehand by:

  • introducing or revising relevant terminology used in the student activity sheets such as mineral, crystal, metal, opaque, translucent.
  • providing a context for the excursion to the Museum including the reasons for visiting, the tasks to be completed and the expected outcomes.
  • have students know some of the past and present uses of some minerals.

Please photocopy for your students:

The following materials should be photocopied for each supervising adult:

  • Australian Museum Guide Map
  • Planet of Minerals exhibition floorplan (on any Mystery Mineral sheet)
  • Teachers’ Answers (provided after you book)
  • Your excursion timetable
Other materials

Students will also need:

  • a pencil or pen and a clipboard (optional but useful).

At the Australian Museum

On-site activities

Students will explore the Planet of Minerals exhibition with the Marvellous Minerals activity sheet. They will deduce, from a series of options, why these minerals have been used in this way.

We would recommend that you encourage students to closely observe the minerals in the gallery and gain an appreciation for minerals.  Ideally they will develop a passion for mineral collecting!

Organisational tips
  • The activity takes approximately 45 minutes to one hour
  • Please use the Museum Guide Map to navigate your group to the Planet of Minerals exhibition on Level 1.

Post-visit activities

Have students pick their favourite mineral from their Marvellous Minerals sheet, and research it. They could also present their research in oral and/or written ways.
Introduce or reinforce students’ understanding of: crystal form, mineral hardness, element and compound.

Ms Helen Wheeler , Learning Services Operations Manager
Last Updated: