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Plate Tectonics Activities


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Tracking Tectonic Plates Using Two Independent Methods
Laurel Goodell, Princeton University
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 ...

Density of Earth Materials
Julie Martin, Hartnell College
This activity modifies a typical density laboratory exercise to fit within a lecture session. Students are asked to compare the densities of six different rocks/minerals collected from six different environments. ...

Google Earth Lab for Oceanography
Beth Dushman, Del Mar College
This activity is designed to give students an introduction to Google Earth, and to demonstrate some of its capabilities as an educational tool. This lab asks students to examine a number of features and to answer ...

Predicting Radon levels in homes based on geology
Gayle Gleason, SUNY College at Cortland
By supplementing existing traditional labs on mineral and rock identification, and on interpreting geologic maps, and creating a lab time for analyzing data available on the web, the students will determine if ...

Online Discussions in an Environmental Geology Course
Karin Kirk, Independent Educational Consultant
In this introductory-level course, the online discussions are the heart and soul of the course. Throughout the 7 online discussions, much of the course content is presented and digested, students employ critical ...

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Earth Materials and Ancient Cultures
Wayne Powell, CUNY Brooklyn College
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 ...

Milky Way - Ductile and Brittle Demo
Mark Wood
Milky way candy bar is given to each student. They are told to bend it and write down what they observe. The activity takes an every day object and ties the geologic terms to something they have experience with.

Timeline of the Early Earth
Selby Cull
Students assemble timelines of the early evolution of Earth's atmosphere, lithosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere by examining data from Archean rocks and minerals.

Reading Time Series Plots
Shelley Olds, UNAVCO
This activity provides a brief introduction to GPS and provides a student activity to practice creating and reading time series plots with simplified GPS data and with authentic GPS data from Iceland.

Chemical Inputs and Outputs at Subduction Zones
Karin Block, CUNY City College
In this exercise students utilize data from geochemistry databases to analyze inputs and outputs associated with arc volcanism.


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