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Cooking Mining

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Earth & Environmental Volunteer Activities
Main Image
Earth & Environmental Volunteer Activities
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Grade
Time Needed for Activity

Students mine for chocolate chips in cookies attempting to get as many chocolate chips as possible without damaging the cookie.

Students will participate in this fun activity and learn about mining for rocks and minerals. They will also learn about how mining can impact the environment by mining for chocolate chips in cookies, attempting to get as many chocolate chips as possible (i.e., minerals) while not damaging the cookie (i.e., environment).

 


 

What You Need

Materials if being dropped off a at a school:

  • 1 graphing sheet per student with pre and post slides.
  • 1 package of mini "Chips Ahoy" cookies per student
  • 1 package of mini "Bear Paws" cookies per student
  • 2 toothpicks per student
  • 2 paperclips per student
  • 2 large wooden picks per student
  • 1 paper plate per student

Materials if not being dropped off at a school:

  • 1 or 2 chocolate chip cookies (or rainbow chip) per student
  • Options for tools (2 toothpicks, 2 skewers, 2 paperclips, etc. per student)
  • A plate to complete the activity on

PowerPoint:

Lesson Plan:

 

Safety Notes

Ensure you are familiar with Let's Talk Science's precautions with respect to safe delivery of virtual outreach to youth. These precautions can be found in the manual for this activity. 

Check with the educator about any student allergies before completing this activity with students.

What To Do

You are going to be a miner of the precious mineral ‘chocolate chips’. You’ll have options of land/cookies to choose from and tools to use. You cannot touch the land with your hands. Your goal is to mine as many minerals (in this case chocolate chips) as you can without destroying the environment. You won’t be eating the cookies you use in this activity.

Your first job is to determine what land (cookies) you want to purchase and what mining tools you will purchase based on your budget. You are going to start out with a pretend $20. Pull out your graph sheet and a pencil or pen and write $20.00 somewhere in the space beside the printed graph boxes.

Rules:

  • You have $20.00 to spend (and you don't have to spend it all)
  • Try to mine as many minerals/chocolate chips as you can without damaging the land/cookie
  • Each full chocolate chip you mine will pay you $2.00 (partial chocolate chips can be squished together to make one)
  • You can purchase land and tools as long as it is in your budget
  • If a tool breaks, you can no longer use it
  • Your goal: make the most money you can without too much damage to the land

Costs:

  • $5 per 2 mini "Chips Ahoy"
  • $7 per mini "Bear Paws"
  • $4 per toothpick
  • $5 per paperclip
  • $6 per large wooden pick/skewer

Give the students 10 minutes to mine for their minerals.

Calculating the amount of profit:

  1. Count the number of full chocolate chips you mined
  2. Multiply that number by 2 (because each full chocolate chips pays you $2.00)
  3. Add in the amount of money that you had leftover after purchasing land and tools
  4. Calculate the amount of land you damaged (instructions are on the PowerPoint)

 

Discovery

What's Happening?

Mining is a great way for Canada and people to make money but it can damage the environment and be a threat to the survival of animals and plants (and other species). This is why there is a law (the Canadian Environmental Protection Act) to help ensure the land isn’t damaged too much when mining. It is important that mining is completely sustainable to do as little damage as possible to the environment.

Mining the chocolate chips represents the minerals that are being extracted from the ground. The tools that we purchased in this activity represent the tools and equipment that miners use in real life to extract minerals. The crumbling of the cookies once we started mining represents how the Earth is dug up during the mining process. 

What's Happening?

Mining is a great way for Canada and people to make money but it can damage the environment and be a threat to the survival of animals and plants (and other species). This is why there is a law (the Canadian Environmental Protection Act) to help ensure the land isn’t damaged too much when mining. It is important that mining is completely sustainable to do as little damage as possible to the environment.

Mining the chocolate chips represents the minerals that are being extracted from the ground. The tools that we purchased in this activity represent the tools and equipment that miners use in real life to extract minerals. The crumbling of the cookies once we started mining represents how the Earth is dug up during the mining process. 

Investigate Further

If students are interested in the mining topic, you could discuss the mines that are found in their province (a list is found in the manual for this activity).

Investigate Further

If students are interested in the mining topic, you could discuss the mines that are found in their province (a list is found in the manual for this activity).

Resources

PowerPoint:

Lesson Plan:

 

Resources

PowerPoint:

Lesson Plan: