Where did our great lake come from? Why do we have steam coming up from under the ground around us? Why do we have rocks like pumice and obsidian around us? Why are we surrounded by mountains? These were some of the questions that we set out to research.
Making volcanoes in the sandpit
Making our volcano erupt
We read lots of journal articles and books, and we researched online. We discovered that our great Lake Taupo was a volcanic caldera and that most of the mountains around us are also volcanoes. We were super excited to discover that we swim in the crater formed by one of the biggest volcanic eruptions in human’s history and that we ski on an active volcano. Did you know that we are the only country in the world that has ski slopes on an active volcano?
Kevin volcano poster
Ava volcano poster
Emily Volcano poster
Piper Lake Taupo research poster
Piper sharing her poster
Clare volcanoes research
Our research led to us finding out about the layers of the earth, rocks and fossils.
Dallas rocks poster
Charlie rocks poster
Te Whetu geodes research
Brooke making fossils
Tyler making fossils
We also learned about what geologists do. Victoria told us that her dad was a geologist. He is originally from Mexico. He travels the world learning about volcanoes and other geological features. We invited him to come and talk to our class. He was overseas working, but was happy to come and visit when he got back.
It was very exciting to have a real geologist visit us. He was dressed in his work clothes, he brought in his tools and he showed us diagrams and photos. We got to ask lots of questions and we learnt lots. Our class rock and fossil collection had been growing all term, so we were excited to ask him all about them. We couldn’t believe it when he licked the rocks to figure out what kind of rock they were! Piper had lots of her own rocks to ask German about. Kora found out that her rock was silica and German explained that silica is what glass is made from. Jordyn Lea asked German what his favourite rocks were and he told us that he likes metamorphic rocks because they can contain crystals. “I’ve made crystals!” exclaimed Charlie and he showed them to us. We were also amazed to find out that German climbs inside volcanoes to study them and that some geologists study rocks from the moon! Lots of us now want to be geologists when we grow up.
Geologist talking to the class
Geologist talking about different rock types
Geologist showing us his equipment
Geologist showing us diagrams and photos
Geologist explaining about the Taupo Volcanic Zone
After researching we had presented our work in poster form, as digital books and as movies. We showed Mr Orozco some of our posters and the movies that we had made to get his feedback.
Lake Taupo Trailer video here
How Lake Taupo formed video here
We also showed our work to parents and other classes at our end of term celebration day. We set up displays to teach people about Lake Taupo, rocks, fossils, what geologists do, volcanoes and much more. We demonstrated how calderas, like Lake Taupo, are formed and how volcanoes erupt. We even gave people a chance to make their own fossil with clay and plaster of paris.
Demonstrating a caldera 2 video here
Demonstrating a caldera 3 video here
Making a caldera
Demonstrating a volcano
Thank you so much, German Orozco, for giving up your time to visit us. e absolutely loved the experience and learnt a lot. It was one of the highlights of the term for us and you have inspired our children.
Victoria s thank you letter
Clare s thank you letter
Imogen s thank you letter
Ava s thank you letter