Examples by Type

This material was originally created for Starting Point:Introductory Geology
and is replicated here as part of the SERC Pedagogic Service.

Homework Video Games

These online games require only an Internet connection and a browser that supports mostly Java or Flash. They are intended for individual learners, are engaging, and are impossible to win without learning at least a little of the material. Monster6 helps students at an outcrop
  • Allosaur Survival Game
    In this online computer game, players must figure out how to keep an Allosaurus from starving or being eaten until it grows to adulthood.

  • Planet Oit!
    This is an online adventure game in which players prospect for minerals on a virtual geologically realistic world.

  • Virtual Oil Well
    This strategy game has players prospect for oil using seismic profiles on limited budgets.

In-class Competitions

Run competitive games run in class to motivate students.
  • Fossil Identification Board Game
    The instructor uses a series of games to help students identify and answer questions about fossils. The game grows more complex over time as the instructors add rules and phyla to identify.

  • Wheel of Geology
    This quiz game is intended to help students review for an upcoming exam. Topics of questions are randomly determined by spinning a wheel. Teams answer questions using electronic CPS handhelds.

  • Whose Fault Is It Anyway?
    This game has students simulate the propagation of P and S waves after an earthquake and to use the lag between these to determine where in the simulation the earthquake occurred.

Outdoor Identification Events

Get your students outdoors in teams competing to identify items in the field.
  • GPS Treasure Hunt
    Students are divided into teams, each of which is given a list of instructions and a GPS unit, and sent to find certain locations. At each stop, they identify a particular building stone or a plant.

  • NADS Scum Run
    This exercise consists of a relay race in which students must identify specimens or answer questions at various stations.

  • Rock/Mineral Scavenger Hunt
    Take students into the field and give each team a list of rocks or mineral types you want found and brought back within the time limit.