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Classroom Activities

These classroom and lab activities use data, simulations or modeling to teach geoscience topics. Examples include the use of model output, chemical analyses, remote sensing data, interactive data tools, or large databases.

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Confirmation of the IPCC Prediction re: Increased Storminess part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
A two-part culminating activity for a meteorology/climatology unit in an Earth Science course centered upon data acquisition and analysis regarding the confirmation of the IPCC predicition regarding increased ...

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Poleward Heat Transport Jigsaw part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
Based on great plate tectonic exercise by Sawyer et al. (2005 JGE), this small-group exercise with maps of data about earth's energy balance helps students visualize poleward heat transport.

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Exploring the Link between Hurricanes and Climate using GCM Results part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This activity requires students to examine global climate model output available online and consider the potential impact of global warming on tropical cyclone initiation and evolution. As a follow-up, students ...

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CLEAN Selected This activity has been selected for inclusion in the CLEAN collection.
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Using ArcGIS to Study the New Lakes in the Toshka Basin in Egypt and Evaluate Egypt's New Valley Project part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Introductory Courses:Activities
In this assignment, students use ArcGIS to analyze the new lakes that have formed in the Toshka Depression, Egypt as a result of overflow from Lake Nasser and use their analyses to evaluate the wisdom of the plan ...

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Red Beans and Rice: Slope failure experimental modeling part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Geomorphology:Activities
Students replicate a slope failure experiment published in Science (Densmore et al., 1997) using a simple, acrylic slope failure box in an effort to forge a link between autocyclic processes, long-term landscape ...

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Testing the Fixed-hotspot-moving-plate model part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Introductory Courses: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 ...

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Global Temperatures part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Teaching with Data:Examples
Students analyze the global temperature record from 1867 to the present. Long-term trends and shorter-term fluctuations are both evaluated. -

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Gold Star Panel Review This activity received a gold star rating from a Panel Peer Review.
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CLEAN Selected This activity has been selected for inclusion in the CLEAN collection.
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Cascadia Great Earthquake and Tsunami Suite part of Cutting Edge:Courses:GIS and Remote Sensing:Activities2
Michael Mayhew and Michelle Hall, Science Education Solutions Summary The Cascadia Earthquakes and Tsunami Suite contains five case studies organized around understanding the potential for large earthquakes and ...

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Northridge: A Case Study of an Urban Earthquake part of Cutting Edge:Courses:GIS and Remote Sensing:Activities2
Michael Mayhew and Michelle Hall, Science Education Solutions Summary The 1994 Northridge Earthquake Case Study explores the mystery of how such a major fault could have been missed within a tectonic basin that is ...

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Comparing Carbon Calculators part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Teaching with Data:Examples
Carbon calculators, no matter how well intended as tools to help measure energy footprints, tend to be black boxes and can produce wildly different results, depending on the calculations used to weigh various ...

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Exercise 8: Using LiDAR and GPS data to model the water table in ArcScene part of Cutting Edge:Courses:GIS and Remote Sensing:Activities2
Barbara and David Tewksbury, Hamilton College Tutorial for using the new LiDAR tools (LAS dataset and LAS toolbar) in ArcGIS 10.1 (Acrobat (PDF) 13.8MB Nov6 13). Same LiDAR Tutorial as a Word doc (Microsoft Word ...

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Using GIS to estimate the volume of snow and water in a drainage basin part of Cutting Edge:Courses:GIS and Remote Sensing:Activities2
Todd Rayne, Hamilton College Summary This activity uses field measurements and GIS to estimate the volume of water in the form of snow in a field site. Context Type and level of course I use this in a ...

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NanTroSEIZE in 3-D part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Online Teaching:Activities for Teaching Online
We have developed a web-based virtual expedition, NanTroSEIZE in 3-D, based on a seismic survey associated with the NanTroSEIZE program of NSF-MARGINS and IODP to study the properties of the plate boundary fault ...

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Accessing Streamflow Data via the Worldwide Web part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Geodesy:Activities
The objectives of this exercise are to (a) use the worldwide web to access hydrologic data, and (b) compare precipitation/runoff characteristics in different regions of the USA.

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Earthquake Investigation Workshop: Shake, Rattle, & Rock part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Geodesy:Activities
This workshop is part of an NSF-funded effort to provide professional development to STEM teachers in Rhode Island. In this activity, students will make "earthquakes" using a simple model, the earthquake ...

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Intro to Graphing part of Cutting Edge:Develop Program-Wide Abilities:Undergraduate Research:2014 Workshop:Activities
Intro to Graphing is a 2-phase exercise that introduces students to Excel for the purposes of properly storing their data and producing graphs.

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Is There a Trend in Hurricane Number or Intensity? part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This lab guides students through an examination of the hurricane record to determine if there is a trend in hurricane intensity over the past 40 years and introduces some issues related to statistics and ...

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Learning About Marine Sediments Using Real Data part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Introductory Courses:Activities
This exercise set explores marine sediments using real core photos and composition data from the scientific ocean drilling programs DSDP, ODP, and IODP in an inquiry-based approach.

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Seasonal variation in light, mixing depth and primary productivity in temperate northern hemisphere waters part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
In this exercise students work with light, temperature, and phytoplankton biomass proxy (chlorophyll a concentration) data to; Become more skilled in reading and interpreting semi log graphs, temperature profiles, ...

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VEPP: Volcanic activity and monitoring of Pu`u `O`o, Kilauea volcano, Hawaii part of NAGT:Teaching Resources:Volcano Exploration Project: Pu`u `O`o:Examples
Brief three-line description of the activity or assignment and its strengths: This is a 10-week group project for a Volcanic Hazards elective course, for undergraduate geology students. Students will access and ...

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