Marvelous Marbles – A Mini-Unit Study

Our investigation began simply, like the best of learning opportunities do, by finding a marble in a pile of toys.

Wedged under some train tracks, resting calmly on Mr. Potato Head’s missing pink ear, was a clear glass ball with a thin twist of green inside. The cool, smooth surface was perfect for rolling on the dining room table and light reflecting off the glass and green twist were captivating. How was this tiny ball made? What do you do with it? How do you play marbles….and is it fun?

Thus began our mini marble unit study.

Mini – Marble Unit Study

First, we watched some videos on how marbles were made:

The Magic of Making – Glass Marbles

Marbles – How It Is Made

Marble King

​Then we discovered some marble runs and marble machines:

Archimedes – Marble Roller Coaster

3 Track Copper Rolling Ball Sculpture Marble Run

Nicholas’ Marble Run

After that the kids decided to try their hands at making their own marble runs. They sketched out the designs, wrote a list of supplies they needed, and started constructing their masterpieces. Interestingly, they opted for using cardstock to make tubes instead of using paper towel tubes. (It was a good reminder for mom to let them create on their own.)

Then we decided to research how marbles are played. Here are couple of good explanations:

How to Play Marbles

How to Play Marbles and My Collection

Of course, we then needed more than our lone marble and got our own jar of “The 50 Greatest Marbles in the World” according to the salesman. And now we’re on a marble playing frenzy. No tv, no video games, no computers….just me, the kids, and the marbles. It’s…”marble”-ous.

Comments