Discovering Plate Boundaries

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Resource Type:Classroom Activities; Curricula and Instruction
Grade Level:
5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Organization:Rice University
Summary:"This is the home of """"Discovering Plate Boundaries,"""" a data rich exercise to help students discover the processes that occur at plate tectonic boundaries. I have used DPB with students from 5th grade to Earth Science Majors at Rice University. It works well over this wide range because it requires the students to observe and classify data. It does not require prior knowledge of plate tectonics. However, I do vary my expectations of the students at different levels. The exercise is built around 4 global data maps: 1) Earthquake location and depth, 2) Location of recent volcanic activity, 3) Seafloor Age, and 4) Topography and Bathymetry. The exercise is based on the """"jigsaw"""" concept, mixing the students to work in different groups during the exercise. DPB includes opportunities for all students to make oral presentations to their fellow students. The exercise is doen over about 3 hours. I usually do it in 50 minute periods on three separate days, but it can also be done in a three hour lab period."
Earth Science Big Ideas:Big Idea 2; Big Idea 3; Big Idea 4
NGSS Discplinary Core Ideas:ESS2.B
NGSS Performance Expectations:HS-ESS2-1; HS-ESS2-3; MS-ESS2-3
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:Analyzing and interpreting data; Developing and using models
NGSS Crosscutting Concepts:Energy and matter: Flows, cycles, and conservation; Patterns; Stability and change
Subjects: 6-8; 9-12; earth science; geology; geoscience; high school; middle school; plate tectonics
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