The characteristics of rocks and soil must be studied through sampling, observation and testing. This testing includes the ability of water to pass through samples of rock or soil and the determination of color, texture, composition and moisture level of soil. Measurable and observable characteristics of rocks include size and shape of the particles or grains (if present) within the rock, texture and color. Age-appropriate tools must be used to test and measure the properties. The characteristics of the rock can help determine the environment in which it formed. Technology can be used to analyze and compare test results, connect to other classrooms to compare data or share samples, and document the findings.
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