Common things we use every day, like roads, sidewalks, schools, hospitals and homes ─ to name just a few ─ are made up of rocks and minerals. As a resource, they are called mineral reserves and include materials like sand, gravel, limestone, granite, and other aggregate and construction materials.
- Piece of heavy duty PVC pipe about one inch in diameter and 10 inches long
- Piece of wood doweling that will fit inside the PVC pipe
- Wood block
- Leather garden glove
- Hand lens or microscope
- Non-toxic marker
- Large sheet of white posterboard
- Six clear plastic sandwich bags
- Plastic knife
- Tools for separating soil, such as tweezers, tongue depressor, drinking straw
- Paper towels (for clean up)
Architects and engineers often design and build structures inspired by the earth’s natural formations and shapes. This was also true for the ancient builders that built pyramidal structures and platforms with broad bases and tapered sides, inspired in most cases by the hills and mountains they saw around them. While many societies built them, pyramids and platforms across different cultures were not all alike, differing in shape, function, and construction materials, and techniques.