From crystals to geodes, kids love rocks and thanks to the Niagara Peninsula Geological Society they can learn about them right at the NOTL Community Centre.
The Kids Rock Club led by Francesca (Ms. Fran) and her son Nicholas Sorrenti meets monthly to discuss a different rock each session and give kids a chance to show and share their own geological findings.
“The kids are really excited. They’re enthusiastic,” said Francesca Sorrenti.
The group’s December session focused on geodes, with geological society members Patti and John Anderson cracking them open for the students to look inside. (Geodes are rocks with crystals inside.)
“He broke (the geodes) open for each of them and they got to explore the inside and they got to keep them,” said Sorrenti.
She explained that the club tries to focus on rocks that are found in the region and in November when discussing fossils, the group went to the Niagara Nature Exchange Centre and discovered their own fossils at the Niagara Glen.
Sorrenti hopes that as the group continues they will go on more fun field trips.
Before the group launched in NOTL in October, Sorrenti was running it in Niagara Falls with a regular turnout of around 60 children and the new group has already grown to 40 in three months, so the future looks bright.
“We’re looking for more space now because we’ve outgrown the room,” said Sorrenti.
“As the number of children steadily increases after each session, our volunteer facilitators are actively searching out ways to accommodate the growing interest in earth sciences locally,” she said in an email.
The group thanked those who donated services and funding to make it all possible, Walker Aggregates, Garage Pizza in St. Davids and Book Outlet in St. Catharines.
Membership to the Kids Rock Club is $20 for the year and includes monthly meetups and all materials required for crafts and activities, a National Geographic rock book, a new geological sample every month, and a rock collection box to store specimens.
Sorrenti recognizes that some may not be able to afford the fee, but urges anyone interested to come out as accommodations can be made.
“We’re understanding that way. If there are families out there that can’t afford it we want to help them out as much as possible.”
The group welcomes any additional support from the community, to lend or support instructional materials, or to simply share a fun rock fact, reach out to club directors at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To enrol in this unique educational opportunity, visit: bookwhen.com/cocoandclay.