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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Where is that chunk of crust going? part of Activities
I introduce students to GPS, frames of reference, and the permanent GPS stations in the EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) in class, and obtain near-real-time data for two stations from UNAVCO. We use ...
Rock cycle in chocolate lab part of Activities
This lab activity simulates the rock cycle with a piece of chocolate instead of actual rock. Students melt, crystallize, erode, lithify and metamorphose a single small block of chocolate. Along the way students ...
Downloading Earthquake Data from the USGS Earthquake Hazards Site for Anywhere in the World and Studying it Using ArcGIS part of Activities
Students download earthquake data from the USGS Earthquake Hazards website and plot and anlyze the earthquakes using ArcMap and ArcScene.
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.
Earthquake Case Study part of Activities
This activity is a multiple case study analysis of different earthquakes that leads to student interpretation of claims, evidence and prediction/recommendations.
Computerized Field Trip Preview of the Berkshire Mountains part of Activities
This is a computer (Windows, Macintosh) based exercise designed to take about two hours. Students use a 5 page short-answer study sheet with the Berkshire Field Trip Map, Guidebook and associated images of the ...
Emergent Models in Google Earth part of Activities
This is one sample of a set of emergent models we are developing for use with Google Earth. Students use the Google Earth time-slider to lift 3D models of the subsurface into view. They can substitute their own ...
Florida River Project: Sedimentary and metamorphic rocks lab part of Activities
This fairly traditional rocks-in-boxes lab has been incorporated into a semester-long project. At the end of the lab, students apply their rock-identification skills to rocks from their study area.
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.
Testing the Fixed-hotspot-moving-plate model part of Activities
Students examine hot spot tracks, magnetic inclination data, and coral data from the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain to test the hypothesis that hotspots are fixed. Most students have learned somewhere that hotspots ...
Volcanoes Writing Assignment part of Activities
Students write an original work of fiction pertaining to the geology of stratovolcanoes and their eruptive hazards.
Physical Geology: Idaho Field Trip part of Activities
Optional field trip to local sites of geologic interest/relevance.
Spring Break-Weathering Homework part of Activities
This short assignment gets students thinking about and looking for geology while on spring break. Students are asked to photograph a feature of weathering and they must be in the picture. Students must then do a ...
Learning Assessment #3 - Igneous & Sedimentary Rocks (2011) part of Activities
An in-class activity that tests students' understanding of igneous and sedimentary rocks and processes.
Weathering Experiment part of Activities
This project has students dirty several dishes equally and design experiments to determine which analogs of geologic processes are most efficient for removing the baked-on food. Students calculate rates 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 ...
Earthquake Machine Demonstration part of Activities
This classroom activity is a demonstration where students predict what will happen under various conditions. The "Earthquake Machine" shows relationships between stress, strain, friction along the fault ...
Earthquake resistant design part of Activities
In groups of two, the students design and build a three-story building to be as earthquake resistant as possible. Using an in-house designed and built shaker table, we load each floor of the building based on area ...
Earthquakes part of Activities
This activity uses geoinformatics to understand the world around us with an emphasis on earthquakes.