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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Learning Assessment #7 - Maps & Structures part of Activities
An in-class activity that tests students' understanding of geological maps and structures (faults and folds).
Learning Assessment #5 - Geologic Time (2011) part of Activities
An in-class activity that tests students' understanding of the principles of relative age, absolute age and numerical age bracketing.
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.
Learning Assessment #1 - Plate Tectonics part of Activities
An in-class activity that tests students' understanding of the basic concepts of plate tectonics.
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.
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 ...
Who Polluted Surface and Groundwater in This Place? part of Activities
Students use water-well data and geology to determine which site caused groundwater and surface-water contamination.
Analyzing your Hometown Stream using On-line USGS NWIS Data part of Activities
Students analyze discharge records of streams or rivers of interest to them using on-line USGS NWIS data.
Volcanoes Writing Assignment part of Activities
Students write an original work of fiction pertaining to the geology of stratovolcanoes and their eruptive hazards.
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.
Using ArcGIS to Study the New Lakes in the Toshka Basin in Egypt and Evaluate Egypt's New Valley Project part of 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 ...
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 ...
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 ...
Hot Topics in Global Warming part of Activities
Students locate and write about current climate change research using the 2007 IPCC report. This information literacy project is designed to help students learn how to find, read, and explain peer-reviewed ...
Take A Hike Assignment part of Activities
Students are assigned to take a hike in a location of their choice and write a concise summary of their observations of Earth Science features and processes. This assignment is used near the end of an Earth Systems ...
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 ...
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.
Learn more about this review process.
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.