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Black Rock, Derbyshire

© GeoconservationUK ESO-S Project, 2014

It is anticipated that the ideas and materials presented here will be adapted by schools, and others, to be more appropriate for their own purposes and programmes of study.

In such circumstances please acknowledge the source as the Earth Science On-Site project.

KS3 pupil worksheet 3 (pdf file, 126 KB)
KS3 pupil worksheet 4 (pdf file, 28 KB)
KS3 pupil worksheet 5 (pdf file, 44 KB)
KS3 pupil worksheet 6 (pdf file, 30 KB)



Location 3. At the reef quarry. (From 20 to 30 minutes)

  • Bring the group to the east (back) edge of the Reef Quarry where, by looking over the wire fence, many crinoid fossils can be observed.

Point out that limestones can be different because of the number and kind of fossils they contain, and this varies from place to place. You may want to extend time here and take the opportunity, by using the same questions, to see how much of the work from the first exposure pupils can use to understand this one.

“How many differences can you see in the limestone here compared with the first place we looked?” [The bed dips to the north here, it is has very many fossils in it, mainly all the same.]
“Can you describe these fossils?” [The crinoid remains here are almost all lengths of crinoid stem, but some may be arms, and possibly holdfast – finding them can depend on the light conditions. The stems are made up of individual circular calcite “discs” with a central “hole” rather like polo mints. Very few cups seem to be present]
“Why do you think so many crinoids were able to live here together?” [See document BR9 Info fossils for more detailed information: Plenty of food, appropriate depth, oxygen, sunlight, salinity, temperature, and current strengths not strong enough to uproot them or sediment to bury them. Lack of predators, steady rise in sea level allowing the reef to build up.]

Use Worksheet 3 to help you make a sketch of one or two fossils from part of the exposure.

Location 4. At The Millennium Wall (About an hour and a quarter)

  • Bring the group to the eastern (uphill) end of the Millennium Wall. The following kinds of questions would be useful in preparing students for this exercise at the Millennium Wall (See the map). Remind them that mining and quarrying of stone and aggregate are still valuable parts of our economy, and that it is the physical and chemical properties of rocks that are important in deciding what they are used for.

“What different kinds of uses can we make of stone?” [Building frontages (decorative); roofs (waterproof); walls (load-bearing); monuments; road aggregate (resistant); paving stones; gravel; cement & concrete (chemical purity); bricks (made from clay) glass (made from sand), fuel (coal) etc.]
“What would a stone need to be like if it was to be used for carving a large statue?” [blocks, free from cracks or joints, soft enough to carve, resistant enough to survive physical and chemical weathering for a reasonable time.]
“What would a stone need to be like if it was to be used to build a large bridge support?” [Easily worked into flat sided shapes, strong enough to take the weight above it, chemically and physically resistant]
“What would a sand need to be like if it was to be used in glass making?”” [Chemically pure]
“Why do you think there are so many different kinds of stone used for walling around the country?” [Walls are needed to divide up land (especially where hedges don’t grow quickly) and local stone (whatever its characteristics) is used as it is expensive to move it too far. Drystone walling predates modern fencing technology.]
“What features do we look for to decide if a rock is sedimentary, metamorphic, or igneous?” [Sedimentary features show formation at Earth’s surface; e.g. weathered & cemented grains, fossils, bedding etc. Metamorphic features show effect of heat & pressure; e.g. fused or interlocking crystals of calcite or quartz, new banding of interlocking crystals, or a new cleavage. Igneous features are interlocking crystals without banding. Small crystals = fast cooling, large crystals = slow cooling.]

Working in pairs, pupils are asked to move along the sections of the wall using observation only (no damage to the walls please!), to complete the exercises based on the following data recording sheets on the following pages.

  • Pupils are briefed to accomplish the following, using the worksheets provided. Larger parties should be supervised in groups of about 8 or 10 pupils

Exercise 1

From the Millennium Wall choose one section made from a sedimentary rock, one made from an igneous rock, and one made from a metamorphic rock.

The information boards may be used to help fill in the worksheets, but the most important part of the work is the observations from the rocks which support the answers on the worksheet.

Exercise 2

From the Millennium Wall choose two sections made from different limestones that have not already been looked at. Describe the differences between the two limestones and suggest why these differences occur.

Exercise 3

Choose a rock type from the Millennium Wall that you would use to build the walls of a house you would live in. Sketch a piece of this rock, and label it to show why it would be useful when building a house wall.

Choose another rock type from the Millennium Wall that you would use to build the roof of a house you would live in. Sketch a piece of this rock and label it to show why it would be useful when building a roof.

A summary of the sections of the Millennium wall for the group leader is provided in file: BR9 KS3 Info wall.

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