KS3-4: What are rare earth elements, where do we find them and how can we use them?

Suitable for 11-18-year olds (secondary, middle and high schools), this article and accompanying activity sheet can be used in the classroom, in science clubs and at home.

This resource links to KS3 Science, Earth: Earth Resources and Climate and KS4 Chemistry, Earth and Atmospheric Science; Geography, physical geography and people and environment, but is also internationally relevant.

It can also be used as a careers resource and links to Gatsby Benchmarks:
Gatsby Benchmark 2: Learning from career and labour market information
Gatsby Benchmark 4: Linking curriculum learning to careers

The article includes a summary of a geoscience research project, including an explanation of rare elements such as tellurium, which is rarer than gold! Marine geoscientist Prof Bram Murton explains his fascination with marine geoscience as well as the career opportunities that are available in this field.

The activity sheet includes discussion points - seven questions the students can answer in groups or individually - and ideas for activities that are relevant to geoscience, including Boaty McBoatface!

For more articles and activity sheets linking to biology, physics, chemistry, maths, space, Earth and environmental science, engineering, technology, computer science, medicine, social science and humanities, visit Futurum Careers: https://futurumcareers.com/

If you like these free resources, let us know and leave us some feedback. Thank you!


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  • Brochure.pdf
  • Article.pdf
  • Activity-Sheet.pdf

About this resource


Created: Jun 26, 2019

Updated: Jul 19, 2019

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Creative Commons "Attribution