Through playing the Rock Cycle Game students will gain an understanding of the cycles that form metamorphic, sedimentary and igneous rocks.
Rocks are categorized into three groups according to how they form. Igneous rocks are formed when magma cools. The rate that the magma cools determines what type of igneous rock is formed.
Metamorphic rocks are formed when rocks are exposed to heat and pressure. When the Earth's plates collide and rub against each other, the pressure creates heat and the rocks can change. Rocks are also exposed to extreme heat when they are subducted deep in the Earth or when they come in contact with hot molten material. The box below shows how a few metamorphic rocks form.
Original Rock under heat and Pressure becomes Metamorphic rock
Sedimentary rocks are formed when sediments are deposited and squeezed together. Weathering from wind, ice, water, plants, and even pollution will break up rocks into small pieces called sediment. This sediment is then eroded, transported, and deposited into layers that are cemented together to form sedimentary rocks.
The processes that create the three different types of rocks make up what is called the rock cycle. Although it takes an extremely long period of time, all rocks can change into different types of rocks through this cycle.
Process = Rock Formed
Game is for 1 to 3 players
This lesson plan was developed by the Utah Museum of Natural History.