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Flanshaw Junior, Infant & Nursery School

Flanshaw Junior, Infant & Nursery School

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4.Uses of Rocks & Soils

Rocks and minerals are all around us in nature. Most of us do not realize how huge of a role they play in our daily use of tools, cars, batteries, buildings, and various materials. Without rocks, our lives would be completely different, and it is hard to say how we would get by A lot of rocks are used in the construction industry or more recently for meditation and home design. Here are some other types and uses of rocks:


COAL: A sedimentary rock, formed from decayed plants, is mainly used in power plants to make electricity.


LIMESTONE: A sedimentary rock, it is used mainly in the manufacture of cement, the production of lime, manufacture of paper, insecticides, linoleum, fiberglass, glass, carpet backing and surprisingly as the coating on many types of chewing gum.

SHALE: A sedimentary rock, it can be a component of bricks and cement.


GRANITE: An igneous-plutonic rock, it is widely used for architectural construction, ornamental stone (kitchen worktops) and monuments.


PUMICE: An igneous-volcanic rock, it is used as an abrasive material in hand soaps, emery boards, etc.


MARBLE: A metamorphic rock, it is used in architecture walls and flooring, statues and ornamental purposes (e.g. marble bowl)


SOILS are obviously very important for the growing of plants but we also use the minerals from soils too. Soil is made up of many different minerals (the inorganic particles in soils that weather from rocks). These minerals have unique properties that provide the soil with some of its variation and can provide people with different products.


Minerals have different colours. These colours can be used to make pigments for paints, dyes, and make-up. One mineral that is very red is hematite.

Some minerals also have different chemical formulas and chemical behaviours.

Minerals that are very reactive make good filters for pools and waste water treatment systems to remove chemical pollutants from our drinking water.

Clay minerals are best used for pottery, clay tablets, and adobe bricks.


Many minerals are mined from deeper in the Earth for use in products ranging from sunscreen and jewellery to fertilizer and drywall compounds.


The exotic minerals of some soils make them more ideal for use as mud spas and mud baths

Soil minerals help produce many products. The plants that are grown in soil can be used for food, clothing, recreation, aesthetics, building materials, medicines, and more. The minerals that make up soil particles can be used for
dyes, make-ups, and medicines, or shaped into bricks, plates, and vases.