From Earth Science On-Site
National Stone Centre, Derbyshire
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.
The first and second exposures allow an investigation of the underlying rock of the area, as well as the processes that have affected the rocks since their deposition (cementation, uplift, weathering, erosion and quarrying). Here the key ideas in preparation for the Millennium Wall, and the follow-up homework exercise can be rehearsed by posing the questions suggested below.
At the southern end of the National Stone Centre site (see Figure 1) is the site of the third exercise, the Millennium Wall. At over 100 metres in length, it is made up of nineteen sections which include different styles of dry stone walling from around the country. However, it also brings together a huge variety of rock types, most in fresh, un-weathered condition, in an area famed mainly for its limestone. Conveniently, each section has an information plinth at one end, providing some information about each rock type (and the dry stone walling technique).
Although the information boards provide a lot of information, it is important to stress that the point of these exercises is for the pupils to provide evidence from observations to back up the identification, not the identification itself: e.g. “Why is it a limestone?” “Why is it different from that other limestone?”
Insist that there is no need to lean on, or climb on, the exposures, or walls. The exercise is one of observation.
Conducting The Fieldwork At The First Exposure (About 30 minutes)
The first outcrop is below the round pointed tower, and just east of the Stone Centre. (See Figures 1 & 2).
Use the questioning to focus pupils’ thoughts on the observations they need to make and the thought processes in drawing conclusions.
Afterwards the pupils will be invited to investigate the exposure in pairs use the following kinds of verbal questions to follow up the significant points with their observations.
Pupils should be given time to make notes and sketches of their observations and conclusions about the formation of this outcrop and the changes that have affected it since deposition using Pupil Worksheet 1 (PDF).
PUPIL RESPONSES ON THE RECORD SHEET ARE: fossils; crinoid; brachiopod; corals; beds; crust; sea level; fizzed (effervesced); sedimentary; limestone; deposited; sea; decayed; skeletons; sides; broken;