At the end of March, the Norfolk Collegiate School sixth grade visited Morefield Mine in Amelia, Virginia to conclude their study of rocks and minerals. Originally opened in 1929, Morefield is a highly mineralized pegmatite mine just west of Richmond. Following a brief explanation of the mine’s history and a quick review of rock and mineral properties of the more common types found at Morefield, mine owner Mr. Dunaway took the class to a large area where students could begin their search for treasures. Even though Morefield is perhaps best known for its abundance of amazonite, students proudly showed us other wonderful mineral finds such as garnets, topaz, smoky and pink quartz, amethyst, and mica along with other beautiful rock specimens. A couple students found geodes and were able to open them at home to reveal pretty mineral crystal formations inside. According to teacher Lisa Lain, who organized the event, “It is rumored that one of my students also found an emerald but was so excited that he dropped it in the sluice and lost it!”
Lain said the trip was a great success because the students were able to use the knowledge they gained from class discussions to identify various rock and mineral specimens. “This opportunity gave our students a sense of accomplishment and made the lessons much more relevant to them,” she concluded.