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Teaching Activities

This collection contains activities submitted by workshop participants as well as activities from other Cutting Edge and Teach the Earth projects related to the Deep Earth.




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Question of the Day: Making a Scientific Argument part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Question of the Day
A scientific argument must persuade the reader that the data you present, and your arguments are strong enough, to support your theory, model, or proposed action. The effective writer will make it easy for the ...

Question of the Day: The Structure of the Earth part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Question of the Day
On the cross-section diagram below, label: Crust. Mantle. Lithosphere. Asthenosphere. The depth to the boundaries between each of the above specified layers. The direction of lithospheric motion. Where you would ...

Question of the Day: Plate Boundary Characteristics part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Question of the Day
What kind of plate tectonic process or boundary would you expect if you find a seafloor region with: 1. A long, narrow linear or gently curving deep valley, earthquakes to depths of several hundred km, and ...

Presenting the Geologic Timescale part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lecture Demonstrations:Examples
This project has students model the geologic timescale using distance as a metaphor for time. Students give presentions spaced at distances which represent how far apart in time the events occurred. -

Farallon Slab Visualizations part of Visualization Collectons
Compiled by John McDaris of SERC. These animations and images show what scientists know or hypothesize about the history, motion, and effects of the Farallon Plate being subducted under the North American Plate. ...

BotEC: Walking to the Center of the Earth part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Question: The earth's interior is composed of three main concentric zones: the crust, the mantle, and the core. The outermost layer, the crust, averages 40 km thick on the continents and is thinner (averaging ...

Measuring specific gravity to answer questions about subduction. part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Use a quadruple beam balance to measure the specific gravity of the minerals and rocks that are common in oceanic and continental lithosphere. The results of the calculations are tied to numerous concepts described in previous lectures.

Driving Through Geologic Time - An analogy part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
An analogy of the Earth's history to a cross-country drive.

Seismicity and Relative Risk part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Teaching with Data:Examples
This activity introduces students to using real-time data about earthquakes to make decisions. -

Oceans Socratic Questioning part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Socratic Questioning:Examples
Oceans Socratic questions and answers. -

Mapping Plate Boundaries part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Examples
Students can discover plate boundaries by plotting different sets of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions on maps. These are then stacked on the overhead projector, outlining the tectonic plates. -

Fire and Ice: Identify and compare volcanic and glacial features on land and seafloor. part of MARGINS Data in the Classroom:MARGINS Mini-Lessons
Bathymetry and topography are used to identify and compare glacial and volcanic features of the Sand Point area, Alaska.

Mantle Plumes and Convection Visualizations part of Visualization Collectons
Compiled by John McDaris of SERC. These animations and images are examples of the current state of knowledge and research into the nature of mantle convection and the origins of plumes. The complete set of ...

Ocean Stratigraphy Challenge part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Examples
A 15-20 minute think-pair-share activity interpreting a deep-sea sediment core combining concepts from oceanography, sedimentology, and plate tectonics. -

Solid Earth Socratic Questions part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Socratic Questioning:Examples
Questions regarding the solid Earth are arranged in sequence for a session of Socratic questioning. -

Isostasy and Gravity part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Geophysics:Visualizations
This section highlights animations, interactive graphics, and static images used to illustrate the concept of isostasy and to show how measurement of gravity over mountain ranges provides evidence that mountains have deep roots.

Plate Tectonic Movement Visualizations part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Geophysics:Visualizations
This section provides access to a wide array of visualizations and supporting material that can be used effectively to teach students about plate tectonic movements. Visualizations include simple animations, GIS-based animated maps, paleogeographic maps and globes, as well as numerous illustrations and photos. This collection is not exhaustive but does represent some of the best sources for teaching.

Geology Map Observations part of NAGT:Teaching Resources:Teaching Materials Collection
Students construct the Earth's tectonic plates using geologic maps. The jigsaw method of collaborative group work is used. Skills such as careful observation, presentation, and synthesis are used to create a ...

Field Guide to the Mountain View and West Fork Areas, Stillwater Complex, Montana part of Integrating Research and Education:Montana-Yellowstone Geologic Field Guide Database:MT Field Guides
The Mountain View area of the Stillwater Complex, which is exposed on the west side of the Stillwater River valley, contains a well exposed, easily accessible section through the Ultramafic series. In this area the ultramafic cumulates have, for the most part, escaped the serpentinization common in other parts of the complex. The Basal series rocks and the lowermost ultramafic cumulates, however, have suffereed extensive alteration. The hornfels and the sill/dike complex are reasonably fresh and well exposed in the Verdigris Creek area, the site of intensive exploration for Cu/Ni sulfides. The Banded series rocks are well exposed along the mine road leading to the abandoned Mouat chromite mine, although only Lower Banded series cumulates are present in this area.

Field Guide to an Archean Transect, Eastern Beartooth Mountains, Montana-Wyoming part of Integrating Research and Education:Montana-Yellowstone Geologic Field Guide Database:MT Field Guides
The eastern Beartooth Mountains of Montana and Wyoming contain a record of crustal evolution that spans almost 1000 Ma and culminates in a major episode of crustal growth 2700-2800 Ma. The earlier record is sparse and complex as a result of extensive magmatism and intense metamorphism associated with Late Archean activity. In general, however, it appears that continental material was present in this area by roughly 3600 Ma, and that a stable continental shelf accumulated quartzites, iron-formation, and lesser amounts of pelitic to psammitic units interspersed with small volumes of mafic to silicic volcanic rocks. This cycle of accumulation was apparently terminated by an episode of granulite facies metamorphism 3300-3400 Ma, perhaps as a result of continent-continent collision....About 2800-2900 Ma, a second major cycle of crustal growth began that bears some resemblance to those associated with modern continent-ocean subduction zones....The first igneous rocks produced during this cycle were andesitic or dioritic rocks, both coarse and fine grained, that were subsequently metamorphosed to amphibolite facies....This interval is restricted by the presence of a granodioritic series (Long Lake granodiorite) that was intruded late in the kinematic cycle... (2779 Ma)...and marks the lower limit for the last major episode of regional metamorphism. The last and most volumetrically important rock produced during the cycle was the Long Lake granite. This unit composes approximately 80-90% of the eastern portion of the range and engulfs all older rock types. It appears to have been intruded about 2740 Ma....This excursion will attempt to view the evidence of these two major cycles in four main stops: (1) Hellroaring Plateau, (2) Lower Quad Creek, (3) Upper Quad Creek, and (4) Long Lake. Late Archean mafic dikes (at Beartooth Lake) will also be examined.



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