High School (9-12) Activity Browse
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Unit 5: The Sixth Extinction part of Changing Biosphere
In this unit, students will prepare by reading a couple of articles describing the causes and rates of mass extinctions, including the current "Sixth Extinction," and why conservation is important to ...
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World Map of Plate Boundaries part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
The plate tectonics mapping activity allows students to easily begin to identify basic tectonic processes on a global scale. As students become aware of plate movements, they begin to identify patterns that set the stage for deeper understanding of a very complex topic. The activity uses a simple "Where's Waldo" approach to identify tectonic symbols on a laminated World Plate Tectonic map.
Evolution of Extinct Animals part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
A classroom/lab activity using the Paleobiology Database to produce and interpret diversity curves for various groups of important and popular extinct animals, such as trilobites, ammonites, and dinosaurs. Activity ...
Greenhouse Effect Lab part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
In this lab, students measure temperature changes inside soda bottles (one with CO2 added, the other with only air inside) as incandescent light is shined on them to model the Greenhouse Effect.
Student-Generated Sustainability Short Stories Anchored in Science and Information Literacies and the SDGs part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
To build and improve upon their science and information literacies, students create a collection of short non-fiction stories that connect to at least one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). ...
Earthquake Hazard Maps & Liquefaction: Alaska emphasis part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
Ground shaking is the primary cause of earthquake damage to man-made structures. This exercise combines three related activities on the topic of shaking-induced ground instability: a ground shaking amplification demonstration, a seismic landslides demonstration, and a liquefaction experiment. The amplitude of ground shaking is affected by the type of near-surface rocks and soil. Earthquake ground shaking can cause even gently sloping areas to slide when those same areas would be stable under normal conditions. Liquefaction is a phenomenon where water-saturated sand and silt take on the characteristics of a dense liquid during the intense ground shaking of an earthquake and deform. Includes Alaska and San Francisco examples.
Measuring Ground Motion with GPS: How GPS Works part of Geodesy:Activities
With printouts of typical GPS velocity vectors found near different tectonic boundaries and models of a GPS station, demonstrate how GPS work to measure ground motion.GPS velocity vectors point in the direction that a GPS station moves as the ground it is anchored to moves. The length of a velocity vector corresponds to the rate of motion. GPS velocity vectors thus provide useful information for how Earth's crust deforms in different tectonic settings.
Fault Models for Teaching About Plate Tectonics part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
This short interactive activity has learners to manipulate fault blocks to better understand different types of earthquake-generating faults in different tectonic settings--extensional, convergent, and strike-slip. Fault models aid in visualizing and understanding faulting and plate motions because the instructor and their students can manipulate a three-dimensional model for a true hands-on experience.
Unit 3: The Interconnected Nature of the Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, and Biosphere part of Changing Biosphere
Using a systems dynamics approach, students will work in groups to conceptualize and construct a model of the global carbon cycle considering five major Earth systems: atmosphere, hydrosphere, geosphere, ...
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Using Carbon Isotopes in Astrobiology: Origin of Life and beyond part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
Carbon isotopes are used in many different ways by scientists to reconstruct Earth's past. For example, we can use carbon isotopes to determine when life first evolved on Earth, and to learn more about what ...
Lesson 3: The Value of a Water Footprint (High School) part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
Session 1 of this lesson begins with a quick activity to get students thinking about their direct and virtual water use. It introduces a few new ideas for virtual water use that may surprise students, including the ...
Earthquake Machine part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
In this activity, learners work collaboratively in small groups to explore the earthquake cycle by using a physical model. Attention is captured through several short video clips illustrating the awe-inspiring power of ground shaking resulting from earthquakes. To make students' prior knowledge explicit and activate their thinking about the topic of earthquakes, each student writes their definition of an earthquake on a sticky note. Next, through a collaborative process, small groups of students combine their individual definitions to create a consensus definition for an earthquake.
Activity 10: Feedback Loops Applied part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
Students apply the vocabulary and concepts from the Activity 9: Feedback Loop Introduction to assess and create earth science feedback loops with the LOOPY online modeling program. (Optional) The students then ...
Lake Mixing Module part of Project EDDIE:Teaching Materials:Modules
Stratified lakes exhibit vertical gradients in organisms, nutrients, and oxygen, which have important implications for ecosystem structure and functioning. Mixing disrupts these gradients by redistributing these ...
Unit 2: Water Footprints part of Water, Agriculture, Sustainability
Unit 2 opens a window into water accounting and reveals intensive water use that few people think about. How much water goes into common commodities? Have you considered how much water it takes to support our ...
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How Do We Know Where an Earthquake Originated? part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
Students use real seismograms to determine the arrival times for P and S waves and use these times to determine the distance of the seismic station from the earthquake. Seismograms from three stations are provided to determine the epicenter using the S – P (S minus P) method. Because real seismograms contain some "noise" with resultant uncertainty in locating arrival times of P and S waves, this activity promotes appreciation for uncertainties in interpretation of real scientific data.
Activity 9: Feedback Loops Introduction part of Teach the Earth:Teaching Activities
Students are introduced to feedback loop vocabulary and experiment with different relationships between reservoirs in simple feedback loops using LOOPY, a free, online modeling program.
Seismic Slinky: Modeling P and S waves part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
Students will produce P and S waves using a Slinky© to understand how seismic waves transfer energy as they travel through solids. All types of waves transmit energy, including beach waves, sound, light, and more. When an earthquake occurs it generates four different types of seismic waves. We will focus on two of these: Compressional-P (longitudinal) and shearing-S (transverse) "body waves." These travel through the Earth with distinct particle motion and predictable speed.
Volcano Monitoring with GPS: Westdahl Volcano Alaska part of EarthScope ANGLE:Educational Materials:Activities
Learners use graphs of GPS position data to determine how the shape of Westdahl Volcano, Alaska is changing. If the flanks of a volcano swell or recede, it is a potential indication of magma movement and changing ...
Water Quality Module part of Project EDDIE:Teaching Materials:Modules
Water quality is a critical concept for undergraduate students studying Earth Sciences, Biology, and Environmental Sciences. Many of these students will be asked to assess the impacts of a proposed anthropogenic ...