Chocolate Chip Mining
A practical, problem-solving activity linked to analysis of data about copper mining.
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World of Work

Becoming a(n)...
Mining engineer Mineral processor
World of Work Dimensions

The context in the first part of the task is extracting chocolate from chocolate chip cookies. The second part relates the experiment to mining or in general to metal extraction, with reference to associated environmental problems.

Students are addressed as mining engineers who investigate methods for getting useful minerals from rocks. In this analogy the mineral is chocolate and the rock is a cookie.

Students design and carry out an experiment of extracting chocolate from cookies. This can be seen as an analogy of extracting copper ore from rock.

The product of the task is a report for the directors of the mining company, in which the results of students' investigation and experiment are presented.
Mineral resources are not evenly distributed in the Earth's crust. The difficulty of reclaiming mined areas and the environmental impact of mining are of economic importance. In mining the relative volume of waste versus ore is an issue. In the first part of this open-ended practical activity students investigate ways to extract the 'valuable' chocolate from a chocolate chip cookie. They carry out the experiment and compare the amount and volume of the chocolate to that of the waste. In part 2 this experience is linked to the analysis of data about copper mining, to stress the importance of the issues addressed in part 1 for copper mining.


Copyright/Creative Commons
Mascil partner: GB  

Materials are published under the
CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license.

Inquiry Learning

Inquiry Learning Dimensions

- Exploring situations
- Planning Investigations
- Experimenting systematically
- Interpreting and evaluating
- Communicating results

- Mathematics
- Biology
- Physics
- Chemistry
- Engineering

Target group
- Primary Education
- Lower Secondary Education
- Upper Secondary Education

Age range

100 min.