Back to Projects

Rock-On “Rock”chester

School: Genesee Community Charter School

City/State: Rochester, NY

Grade(s): 5

Format(s): Field guide: Natural science

Subject(s): English Language Arts, Science and Technology, Visual Arts

Project Overview

This field guide was created by 5th grade students from the Genesee Community Charter School in Rochester, New York, as part of a Learning Expedition on geology called, “The Changing Earth.”

This field guide contains two main features. First, students included geological information about local sites – describing the geological features. Secondly, students explained the underlying geologic concepts that contributed to local occurrences. By combining these two aspects of content into one product was a customized way to address required state science frameworks.

To produce Rock-On “Rock”chester, students engaged in extensive fieldwork, visiting each of the sites listed in the guide. They also worked with a local geologist and with museum staff. Amidst the collaborative fieldwork, students were responsible for contributing individual entries to the field guide.

The book includes many unique details, including directions and maps to the geologic sites, a scavenger hunt for the local museum, drawings, a glossary and a list of references.

The original product was 8 ½ by 7 inches and was center-staple bound. This book, and many others like it, are available for purchase on the schools’ website.

How This Project Can Be Useful

  • Incorporates broad disciplinary content required by state frameworks into a specific local field guide
  • Provides an “Expedition Explanation” at the beginning, which helps orient the reader to the students’ work and the scope of the overall project
  • Highlights extensive fieldwork
  • Inexpensive, in-house production
  • Many of the drawings show subject knowledge and care in production - see drawings included in section on High Falls
  • Retains the flavor of student work while also showing in-depth content knowledge beyond typical 6th graders

Common Core State Standards

Standard Long Term Learning Target
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly.
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
  • I can provide a list of sources I used to gather information.
  • I can use grammar conventions to send a clear message to a reader or listener.
  • I can use conventions to send a clear message to my reader.
  • I can accurately use 5th grade academic vocabulary to express my ideas.
Back to Projects