Activities for Introductory GeoscienceHere you will find a wide range of activities for teaching introductory geoscience courses. you can refine your search by selecting the topic or resource type, or by typing in search terms into the search box in the box below.
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Earth System Topics
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Physical Geology: Idaho Field Trip part of Activities
Optional field trip to local sites of geologic interest/relevance.
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Paleotempestology Lab part of Activities
Paleotempestology Lab: this lab activity is designed to help students gain experience in relative and absolute dating techniques as well as a sense of how scientific investigations proceed.
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Metropolitan Museum of Art: Earth Materials and Ancient Cultures part of Activities
Students investigate properties of earth materials through the lens of art and archeology. It allows ties to other required core curriculum courses (particularly classics and art history), and integrates the use of ...
Fun with foam, demonstrating strike and dip in class part of Activities
Colorful foam sheets are used in a classroom or lab setting to introduce students to the concept of strike and dip. It is interactive, and the instructor or TA's can quickly see which students are ...
Tracking Tectonic Plates Using Two Independent Methods part of 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 ...
To Teach is to Learn: Final Project in Envronmental or Intro Geology part of Activities
This assignment asks students to create their own geological educational activity or demonstration (and corresponding write-up) which all students then present/enact during a conference-style presentation session ...
Proposing Questions for the Upcoming Midterm Exam part of Activities
This in-class activity involves groups of 2-3 students who review assigned sections of course material to generate exam questions (including answers), in one of several assigned formats. They then trade results and ...
Relative Dating on Earth and Mars part of Activities
Students apply principles of relative dating to a cross-section, then to the surface of Mars.
The Scientific Method part of Activities
This assignment is designed to introduce the students to the idea and process of the scientific method. They are led to recognize that much of their own thinking is through the Scientific Method.
Seafloor Ages Lecture Tutorial part of Activities
Students work on this Lecture Tutorial worksheet on seafloor ages in pairs during lecture. It directly confronts misconceptions students have about the age of the seafloor, and it guides students to more complex ...
Ordering Geologic Events and Interpreting Geologic History: The Grand Canyon part of Activities
This activity is designed to have students re-examine rocks they looked at earlier in the semester and use them to interpret some of the geologic history of the Grand Canyon.
Discussing Earth part of Activities
Students are invited to hour-long discussions of controversial geologic topics on Sunday afternoons. Those who attend (about half the class) submit page-long essays through Vista for comments and assessment. A ...
Rock-Tectonics synthesis lab part of Activities
This lab aims to draw together rock identification and plate tectonics as well as relative age relationships. It gets students to "be" geologists...looking at rock suites and trying to see how they fit ...
Hometown Geology part of Activities
This is an extra credit assignment for students to learn details about the geology of their hometown.
Observations and Measurements in Geology part of Activities
This exercise gives students an introduction to topics they will encounter throughout the semester, and future course work. It covers plate tectonics, weathering, and basic rock descriptions.
A LONG, LONG time ago: geologic timescales part of Activities
Students compare their pre-conceived impressions of events on the geologic time with the actual positions of these events on a 45.5' geologic timescale.
Chemical Weathering part of Activities
This field trip assignment brings students to a local cemetery to collect data related to the age and extent of weathering of limestone and igneous tombstones. Students then analyze the data they collect using ...
Geologic Maps and Geologic Structures: A Texas Example part of Activities
Students work with geologic maps of Texas, learning details of Texas geology, and reinforce knowledge and use of geologic structures, stratigraphic sections, and geologic cross sections.
Relative Time Application and Synthesis Exercise part of Activities
This classroom activity is a formative assessment that explores the degree to which students can apply relative time principles and synthesize that information with concepts related to the rock cycle.
Relative Age-dating -- Discovery of Important Stratigraphic Principles part of Activities
Students don't have to be passively taught the important principles geologists use to do relative age-dating of rocks and geologic events. By careful analysis and critical thinking about photos and ...