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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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Determining Mantle Temperature and Composition from Discontinuities part of Cutting Edge:Deep Earth:Activities
This pair of activities uses observations of mantle discontinuity structure to examine mantle heterogeneity and differences in the depth extent of melt sources for ridges and "hotspots." The first ...

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Finding the Moho under Milwaukee part of Cutting Edge:Deep Earth:Activities
A seismogram was recorded at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee by Keith Sverdrup during the explosive demolition of a section of the nearby Hoan Bridge on December 28, 2000. The explosive demolition and ...

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Scientific debate: Mantle plumes part of Cutting Edge:Deep Earth:Activities
A structured format for a debate of the mantle plume hypothesis and alternative hypotheses with supporting materials.

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How do Faults Slip: Earthquakes versus Episodic Tremor and Slip part of Cutting Edge:Deep Earth:Activities
A comparison of earthquakes and episodic tremor and slip using GPS and seismic data to illustrate how faults slip.

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The Boxing Day Tsunami part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Teaching Methods:Teaching with Google Earth:Examples
Undergraduate students map data from the National Geophysical Data Center and the United States Geological Survey on Google Earth and study visualizations in order to explore the causes and effects of the Tsunami ...

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Viscosity of the Mantle: Constraints from Post-glacial Rebound part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
This laboratory experiment emphasizes the exponential nature of post-glacial rebound and reinforces the relationship between the rate of rebound and the viscosity of the mantle.

The Floating Lithosphere - Isostasy part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to numerically and then analytically determine the relations governing the depth of compensation.

Earthquakes part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
This activity uses geoinformatics to understand the world around us with an emphasis on earthquakes.

Identifying Plate Tectonic Boundaries for a Virtual Ocean Basin part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Students observe an ocean basin and two continental margins to identify possible plate boundaries and predict where earthquakes and volcanoes would occur. They also draw the boundaries in cross section.

Mercalli Earthquake Activity part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
A jigsaw process that allows students to analyze first person descriptions of earthquakes and assess several earthquake features.

Plate Motions part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Students are asked to removed the last 40 Ma of ocean crust from an isochron map and then put the plates back together. This exercise helps students see that plates and plate boundaries canNOT be stationary through ...

Serpentine Seamounts in the Mariana Forearc: Shallow Material Releases from Downgoing Plates part of MARGINS Data in the Classroom:MARGINS Mini-Lessons
A set of maps, images and .kmz files for use in lectures and discussions on forearc serpentine volcanism in the Mariana subduction system.

Tracking Tectonic Plates Using Two Independent Methods part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Students use two independent methods to determine relative plate motions across a plate boundary. They find that plate tectonic theory generally holds up but also discover sophisticated detail (e.g. velocities ...

Volcanoes around the Globe (Beta test copy) part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Undergraduate non-majors use the Arcview geographic information system (GIS) to explore volcanic hazards and the geochemistry of volcanic rocks. Students explore geochemical data from the GEOROC global database and ...

Hot spot volcanism in western North America part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Students use real data on age of volcanism and ash thickness distribution to better understand hot spot volcanic activity.

Density, Isostasy, and Topography part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Two students measure the density of different rock types by first measuring water displacement of the irregular pieces. Details In this activity, students develop an explanation for the bimodal topography of the ...

What Kind of Continental Margin am I? Active or Passive? part of MARGINS Data in the Classroom:MARGINS Mini-Lessons
Volcanoes, earthquakes, and topography reveal whether a continental margin is active or passive. In this activity, students use the GeoMapApp tool to work with earthquake, volcano, and topographic data to identify ...

Partitioning of thrust and strike/slip faulting in oblique subduction part of MARGINS Data in the Classroom:MARGINS Mini-Lessons
Oblique subduction results in distinct sets of faults with either just thrust or mainly strike/slip motion and that back-arc thrust belts show little oblique strain compared to forearc areas.

A paleobiogeography exercise part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Activities
In this exercise, students are guided through a quantitative comparison of taxonomically distinct Jurassic Ammonite faunas from five different accreted terranes in western North America, and a similar evaluation of ...

A Volcanic Record Through Time part of MARGINS Data in the Classroom:MARGINS Mini-Lessons
This is a lecture segment that can be used or adapted for use in an undergraduate geoscience class. The goal of the lecture is to familiarize students with the concept of volcanic change through time at time scale commensurate to plate tectonic evolution.



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