A page from the "Causes of Color" exhibit...

Lesson 2 (Gemstones)


Earth Science


9 - 12


to identify causes of color in gemstones,
to conduct “color” lab activities,
to create a node map

Time frame:

one week


Computers online and connected to the Internet and printer
Notebook or science journal, pencil or pen
This WebExhibit on the Causes of Colors
Materials to iodine and starch

Lesson 2: Explore Gemstones and make nodemaps.

Author: Margaret Stenerson

Why are diamonds colorless, rubies red, and emeralds green? Your students can discover answers to these questions and others by exploring Causes of Color, doing hands-on activities, and mind mapping and communicating what they learn using fun, interactive nodemaps.

Read background on the physical causes of color, the colors of gemstones, use of nodemaps, relevance to standards and benchmarks, and vocabulary. Go »

Go to the lesson plan for High School students, designed for approximately one week. Go »