Geoscience in Two-year Colleges > Teaching Resources and Perspectives > Activities

Activities

These teaching activities have been submitted by faculty members at two-year colleges across the country. If you would like to add an activity to the collection, check out the Activity Submission Form. To see a larger collection of geoscience activities from all types of institutions, check out the Teach the Earth Activity Collection.


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Wind River Eco-Challenge: A Virtual Excursion Exercise for Introducing Topographic Maps part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Suki Smaglik, Central Wyoming College
This classroom activity simulates an eco-challenge course in the Wind River Mountains, which are close to our campus. Our goal is that students approach their recreational adventures more prepared than they would ...

Navigation Unit part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Suki Smaglik, Central Wyoming College
This is a hands-on activity designed to teach basic land navigation skills using compass, GPS units and topographic maps. This unit relies heavily on math skills.

Metamorphic Rocks Lab part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Ann Hadley, Manchester Community College
Students describe rock characteristics and determine if a rock sample is metamorphic. If it is, they determine the parent rock. If not, they describe what it would change into as a metamorphic rock. The whole class ...

Poster Presentation part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Activities
Kathryn Hoppe, Green River Community College
Students are required to do independent research on a topic of their choosing. They are then required to construct a poster that explains the main points of their topic using a combination of words and graphics. ...

How to be a field geologist: an in-class exercise to introduce students to basic outcrop analysis part of Cutting Edge:Geoscience in the Field:Activities
Becca Walker, Mt. San Antonio College
This in-class exercise is designed to give students practice analyzing outcrops before they go on a field trip. First, students watch a short video tutorial on analyzing an outcrop. Then, they are given a color ...

Determining Earthquake Probability and Recurrence from Past Seismic Events part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Eric Baer, Highline Community College
A homework/classroom activity where students collect historical earthquake information and use it to forecast the probability of larger earthquakes.

Earth's history in 4.56 meters: constructing a timeline with calculator tape part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Eric Baer, Highline Community College
An activity where students make a geologic timeline from calculator tape.

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

Angle of Repose part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Eric Baer, Highline Community College
A student activity to determine the angle of repose and what factors determine te angle of repose.

Earthquake Shaking and Damage part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Eric Baer, Highline Community College
This student homework and problem set has students quantitatively earthquake hazard, shaking and damage.

Modeling the interior of the Earth using Seismic Waves part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Eric Baer, Highline Community College
Students use a variety of tools to explore the interior of the Earth in this inquiry activity.

Making the "black box" model more transparent part of Cutting Edge:Metacognition:Activities
Kaatje Kraft, Mesa Community College
Students will work with a "mystery box" to determine it's contents through an inductive reasoning process in order to better understand how models are used for geoscientific ways of knowing.

Demonstrating P and S Waves with a Slinky part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Pier Bartow, Klamath Community College
P and S seismic waves can be demonstrated with a slinky. P waves have energy traveling parallel to the direction the wave is moving. S waves have energy traveling perpendicular to the direction the wave is moving.

What's Inside? An activity on experiment, hypotheses, and inference part of Process of Science:Examples
Stephen Shawl, University of Kansas; Pima Community College
Students learn about the nature of science by experimenting with little black boxes containing a steel ball as a probe of the interior structure of the box. Students make testable hypotheses, text them and modify them, and compare with results found by other students. Further descriptions and activity sheets are attached.

How to use the HR diagram part of Process of Science:Examples
David Kobilka, Central Lakes College-Brainerd
Astronomy students learn how to use the Hertsprung-Russel diagram by plotting stellar data. HR diagram then reveals evolutionary stage of stars.

Current Events Presentation Activity for Introductory Geoscience Classes part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
Eleanor Camann, Red Rocks Community College
For this two-part assignment, students first locate two substantial current events articles on geology-related topics from mainstream newspaper or magazine. The instructor assesses the articles, making sure that basic criteria have been met, and assigns one article for the student to share with the class in an informal 3-5 minute presentation.

Marine Noise Pollution Silent Socratic Dialogue part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
David Kobilka, Central Lakes College-Brainerd
In this Oceanography activity, students learn about the history of marine noise pollution and its effects on marine life, particularly cetaceans. The activity concludes with a paired debate using the Silent Socratic Dialogue method.

Mineral Properties -- Learning through Experience part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
Katryn Wiese, City College of San Francisco
Students are each given a mineral and asked to locate all other students in the room with the same mineral (knowing there are a total of 5 different minerals). Once groups form, they need to decide what characteristics are similar for all their samples and ultimately report out to the whole class on their observations.

Science in My Backyard part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
Allison Beauregard, Northwest Florida State College
In this lab report writing assignment, students will use the scientific method to solve a real life problem from their own lives. Students use the scientific method to record observations, develop a hypothesis, and set up their experimental design, which they then actually carry out. This approach allows students to practice using the process of science without the intimidation of scientific terms and concepts.

Well Core Analysis: Capstone Activity for Historical Geology part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
Robert Blodgett, Austin Community College
A final group project in introductory historical geology involving description and analysis of a well core and associated geophysical log. Students apply course knowledge of sedimentary geology and paleontology to interpret the depositional environment. Results of their research are summarized in a group presentation and written report.



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