5 Reasons Kids Should Join a Rock Club

Learning is more fun when done with friends together!

Being a member of a rock and gem club is a lot of fun! Whether digging for treasure in the dirt, putting a fine polish on a colorfully banded agate, building a big rock collection or learning the history of our Earth, there is much to enjoy, so I encourage you, too, to join a rock club.

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But what do I know? It’s been a long, long (very long) time since I was a kid. How long? Well, my kids now have kids of their own. Instead of listening to an old man spout off about why to join a club, here’s what kids your age have to say. Ranging from age seven to 13, Kaylee, Ian, Skyla, Beecher, Deacon, Osiris, Della, Lucia, and Beatrice are all members of the Ventura Gem & Mineral Society in California, and some actually belong to two clubs! They have volunteered to share their thoughts with you. Here are their top five reasons to join a rock club…

#5 Take a Fun Field Trip

When I was young, my dad dragged me along on a day-long field trip. It was part of a series of weekend trips sponsored by the Illinois State Geological Survey. I had to suffer through boring mini-lectures on glacial landscapes and the geology revealed by road cuts, riverbeds and quarries and then got to dig. It was worth enduring those lectures when I got to haul home buckets overflowing with rocks, geodes and fossils. After that, it was me dragging my dad on those trips. I was forever bitten by the bug.

So, too, are kids today. Skyla likes her rock club because of those same trips, “I get to go on fun field trips.” Osiris agrees: “It is cool to identify rocks outside. If you do that, you will have a great collection of rocks to amaze your friends and parents.”

Joining a rock club helps you build a neat collection.

#4 Build a Neat Collection

As suggested by Osiris, kids of all ages love to collect and share their collections with friends and family. Most rockhounds are pack rats at heart. We like nothing better than to assemble an assortment of rocks, crystals and fossils found on our journeys or in our backyards, traded with fellow collectors, and purchased at gem shows and rock shops or online.

Whether it is rocks, crystals, fossils, or jewelry, the rockhounding hobby offers an endless variety of one-of-a-kind collectibles. It’s especially fun building a collection of rocks that you found during club field trips. Says Kaylee, “I enjoy learning about gems and minerals that I can collect myself.” Beatrice agrees, noting how “you get to learn about rocks in your local area.”

#3 Enjoy Crafts & Activities

While building a collection is fun, it can be even more fun to do things with the lapidary stones you’ve collected, like agates and jaspers. A rock club provides knowledgeable instructors and the equipment needed to cut and polish stones or to engage in other fun projects alongside fellow members. Beecher agrees, “You get to do lots of crafts and projects together.” Fun crafts in the Ventura club have included making bead bracelets and necklaces, wire wrapping tumble-polished stones, rock painting, and soft-stone rock carving.

Club activities, which Della enjoys, range from gold panning to helping run a rock show, taking part in silent auctions, and volunteering both at club events and in educational outreach to local schools, where junior members such as Skyla have helped educate fellow kids at science nights.

In a rock club, you explore and learn new things.
Adobe Stock / By Neha

#2 Learn New Things

The Earth holds many secrets, and joining a rock club gives you the keys to unlock those secrets as you learn about our planet and its gems, minerals and fossils. This provides an opportunity to grow intellectually.

“It’s very informational,” says Kaylee, while Osiris notes, “Rocks and gems are fascinating to learn about.” Skyla shares the information she learns, “I wrote an article for the newsletter.” “When you are young,” says Lucia, “these things can make a big impact on your life.” Beatrice agrees that “Learning about the history of the Earth itself gives you a different perspective.” It’s a perspective that Ian hopes to take with him throughout life. “I want to be a scientist,” he says.

rock-club#1 Have Fun & Learn Together!

Finally, the Number One Reason to join a rock club? “Have fun!” says Skyla. “Learn fun stuff,” says Della. “Engage in fun activities,” says Lucia. Participate in “a bunch of fun silent auctions,” says Deacon. Beecher underscores “learning and doing fun projects together.”

Join a local rock club and you, too, can join together to make new friends with whom to enjoy fun, fun, and more fun!

This story about why to join a rock club previously appeared in Rock & Gem magazine. Click here to subscribe. Story and photos by Jim-Brace Thompson.


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