Changes in Assessment




Jason Bates


The purpose of this site is to demonstrate the changes in assessment practices I have developed in my 7th Grade Earth Science class since my participation in EdPsy 490.


Out with the old...        &        In with the new...

Test, Homework                              Test, Homework, Activity


   Minerals Homework


Find the error in each statement and rewrite it correctly.

1. A mineral is a solid that comes from organic matter.

2. Salt, diamonds, graphite, and coal are minerals.

3. The compounds in a mineral are arranged in a repeating pattern to form crystals.

4. Some minerals form from magma, which is hot, liquid rock material on Earth’s surface.

5. Halite crystals are formed when fresh lake water evaporates.

6. The smallest group of rock-forming minerals consists of silicates.

In the blank at the left, write the term in the box that correctly completes each statement.

7. Scientists know of more than minerals.

8. Most of these are composed of only elements.

9. These few elements make up of Earth’s crust.

10. Minerals that combine to form the most common rock-forming

group are .

11. A group that includes rock salt is the group.

12. Each mineral has a different formation.

13. Scientists have identified major formation systems.

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Minerals Homework (New)

What’s Your Birthstone?

There is a birthstone for each month of the year. What’s yours? Who in your class has the same

birthstone? Your task is to research your birthstone to find out its physical characteristics, its chemical makeup,

and where in the world it’s found.

Here is the procedure to follow:

1. Refer to the Performance Task Assessment Lists for a Poster and for Classifying.

2. Research your birthstone. You may work with other people in your class who have the same

birthstone. Be sure to discover the physical and chemical properties of your stone. Discover other

interesting details.

3. Make a poster that displays what you have learned. Even though several people have worked

together on the research for the birthstone, each person must make his or her own poster. All of the

posters will be displayed later.

4. Now, work alone to make a classification system for all of the birthstones. Physical and chemical

properties should be important in your classification system. You may study all of the posters to

help you create a classification system.

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Minerals Test




Choose A for True and B for False

1. Titanium is a heavy metal used to produce cars.

2. Ilmenite and rutile are ores of titanium.

3. Titanium tetrachloride is often called tickle.

4. Titanium is nontoxic, making it useful in the replacement of artificial body parts.

5. Manufacturers of titanium prefer using rutile over ilmenite because it's less expensive.

6. The iron sulfate produced in one method of obtaining titanium is harmful to the environment.

7. Titanium's light weight and durability make it useful in the production of aircraft and sporting






8. According to Table 3-1, in general a crystal is ____.

a. a solid

b. a cube

c. liquid

d. none of the above


9. According to Table 3-1, a salt crystal is ____ in shape.

a. cubic

b. hexagonal

c. tetragonal

d. monoclinic


10. As magma cools, its ____ form a crystal structure described in Table 3-1 and it becomes a


a. atoms

b. elements

c. electrons

d. none of the above


11. Minerals are comprised of one or more ____.

a. colors

b. elements

c. rocks

d. structures


12. A mineral is classified as an ore as long as ____.

a. it is rare and valuable

b. it can be used as jewelry

c. it is profitable and useful

d. it is solid and natural


13. The largest group of rock-forming minerals consists of the ____.

a. quartzes

b. halides

c. silicates

d. oxides


14. One of the softest minerals is ____.

a. topaz

b. quartz

c. talc

d. amethyst


15. All minerals share the following characteristics EXCEPT that of ____.

a. being formed by natural processes

b. being formed from living organisms

c. being solids

d. having the atoms within the mineral arranged in a pattern


16. All minerals share ____ basic characteristics.

a. two

b. three

c. four

d. five


17. To make jewelry out of gemstones, they must be ____.

a. mined

b. cut and polished

c. collected

d. none of the above




18. According to Figure 3-1, ______________ is the most common element in Earth's crust.

19. Figure 3-1 shows that together, oxygen and silicon make up _______________ percent of Earth's crust.

20. Based on Figure 3-1, you can infer that the most common rock-forming minerals are


21. Although 90 elements occur naturally in Earth's crust, Figure 3-1 shows that 98 percent of the

crust is made up of only _______________ elements.  

22. Feldspar and quartz are examples of ________________ minerals.

23. There are approximately ______________ known minerals on Earth.



Write the letter of the correct item in the space provided.

a. atoms

b. color

c. solid

d. usefulness, profitability

e. light weight and durability

f. identify

g. ilmenite and rutile

h. magma

i. crystals

j. beauty, rarity

k. minerals


24. ____ Some minerals are formed when ____ cools.

25. ____ Two types of ____ are metallic and nonmetallic.

26. ____ Qualities of a stone that make it a gemstone are ____.

27. ____ Qualities of a mineral that classify it as an ore are ____.


Write the letter of the correct item in the space provided.

a.         color of a powdered mineral

b.         a measure of how easily a mineral can be scratched

c.         the tendency of a mineral to break along a smooth, flat surface

d.         minerals that attract metal like a magnet

e.          by-product of titanium production using ilmenite

f.          how light is reflected from a mineral

g.         the distinctive yellow of sulfur

h.         minerals mined because they contain useful substances

i.        minerals that break with rough or jagged surfaces

28. ____ cleavage

29. ____ ores

30. ____ iron sulfate

31. ____ hardness

32. ____ color

33. ____ streak

34. ____ fracture

35. ____ magnetic  

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Minerals Test (New)

Short Answer


1. Describe how streak is used to distinguish between gold and pyrite.


2. List and explain the five characteristics all minerals share.


3. What determines the type of crystal present in a mineral?


4. How would a collector of minerals determine the hardness of an unknown mineral specimen?


5. Both diamonds and coal are comprised of carbon. Are both minerals? Explain your answer.


6. Explain why most quartz is not considered a gemstone while amethyst, which is a kind of quartz, is a gemstone.

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Classroom Activity

How can special properties be used to identify a mineral?

Observe the differences in print viewed through clear minerals.


• transparent samples of calcite (Iceland spar)

• muscovite mica

• gypsum

• halite

• magnifying glass


1. Obtain samples of the following clear minerals: gypsum, muscovite mica, halite, and calcite.

2. Place each over the print on this page and observe the letters.

Data and Observations


1. What happens to light as it passes through these minerals? As the light passes through each of

the minerals, its path is bent.

2. What mineral can be identified by the print’s double image? What special property is used to

identify this mineral? Calcite. Calcite bends light in two directions as it passes through the

mineral. Double refraction is the special property used to identify transparent calcite

(Iceland spar).




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