Rock Cycle - Rocks (KA)
Post Lab 

  • Exploring myths about rocks.
  • Telling stories about how rocks help form land.
  • island
  • myth
  • rock
  • stone

Students are read a myth about how rocks are formed.


There are many myths and legends about the formation of the rocks of the Earth or about the rocks themselves, especially in the lore of early cultures. Rocks and minerals were very important to early people, because it helped them work with nature. Stones were the building blocks of most of their homes and roadways. Stones helped them to make weapons to find food and protect themselves. Stones were used to grind wheat and corn into a food that could be eaten. Stones were basically the first tools, which helped them create structures. It was even stones that were used to make fire.

The early people knew that rocks were important to their everyday life, so stones were used in many of the stories that they created. Remember the term "stone" was used to refer to both rocks and some minerals.


  1. The formation of islands has always been a particularly mysterious phenomenon. Read the recommended book, The Turtle and the Island (or any other appropriate book) which tells of a turtle who is tired of swimming and starts to build a pile of sand and rocks from the bottom of the ocean to form the island of New Guinea. It also relates how the turtle was involved in getting humans to live on the islands.
  2. Many other myths have been created around how rocks are formed. Have students sit in a circle and begin telling stories about rocks. Below are some stories, but you might want to add your own.

    Pele, the Hawaiian Goddess of the Volcano, causes widespread lava flows when she is displeased. Hawaiians tell of strands of her hair being found after a violent eruption. This "hair" is actually long, thin strands of obsidian.

    Stonehenge, a circular setting of large stones in England, was built around 1800-1400 BC. Legend has it that the stones (since they are so large) were magically transported from Ireland by the wizard Merlin. Modern legends include stories about aliens from other planets placing the stones in that particular order. Historians reveal that the Druids of England engineered the movement of the stones.

    Easter Island, an extinct volcano in the Pacific, has large carved stone statutes (12 to 20 feet high) mounted on 6 foot high platforms. Each statue weighs about 50 tons. However, the statues are carved from volcanic ash quarried from inside the volcano. Many explorers that came across these large figures had strange tales of how the stones had been placed where they were. Most of the stories centered around some type of god. Historians feel that the natives probably engineered the movement, in similar ways as the Egyptians moved blocks to create the great pyramids.

    The pyramids of Egypt were build using limestone, a rock that has the fossils of many small organisms. Many times the fossils would fall out, and the workers developed a myth that the gods would come out of the heaven at night and eat these "lentils." Lentils are pea like plants that were common food for the Egyptians. This was a sign that the pyramids were erected for the gods.

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