Many writers not only have a command of words, but have a sense of how
the words are used in different fields. For example, Hemingway and Steinbeck
were both masters of using scientific facts to help weave a story. Learning
about science is very applicable to many fields that involve writing.
Journalists, television reporters, newscasters, and people who listen or
watch news need to weave scientific information into their stories and
understanding. Ignorance of basic scientific facts may make their stories
Many "sci fi" writers need to consult
scientists to make sure their writing are accurate. Movies such as
Jurassic Park, required the help of paleontologists and geologist to make
the movie realistic.
- Students should read "Ricky the Rapping Rock" and see if the
material written about is accurate. This song by Cassy
Fries, was written by a high school freshman. She
weaves the basic concepts into a fun, but factual presentation of
how rocks are formed. You may want students to write their
own poem on information they learned already.
- You may want students to practice
weaving scientific facts into a creative story. Tell the students the following story:
THE CASE OF THE MIXED UP ROCK
Metamorphic rocks have changed. Why? They were once igneous or
sedimentary rocks, but have changed under heat and pressure. Sometimes
metamorphic rocks feel "different," but they do not know why.
Mildred Metamorphic is visiting her rock doctor to cope with her past
life. Write a story about her "mixed up" emotions when she
finds out that she might have had more than one life.
Have students decide whether Mildred was an igneous or a sedimentary
rock in her first life.
- Guide the students so that they include some of the following
IGNEOUS - life was hot, but cooled down later inside the Earth; or
had to escape to the surface to cool down quickly.
SEDIMENTARY - life was wet, but dried up; life was full of movement
and broken pieces; might involve fossils
METAMORPHIC - life changed; became a punk rocker; pressure was great;
life got a little hot, but is stable now
- Discuss with the students some of the facts they need to weave into
their stories, and then let them discuss other possibilities. Other
class members can give ideas that might spark an interest in other
students. You may want to have your students conduct an internet search for
information about the different types of rocks to get storyline ideas. Use
different search engines to look up "rock."
- You may also want students to illustrate their essay. You might want
to have students join forces to create an essay. One can draw a
"rock" and the other one writes the story.