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Plate Tectonics Lab (Teacher Page)

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Plate Tectonics Lab (Teacher Page)

    Plate Tectonics Lab (Teacher Page)

California Content Standards:

    ; Earth Science 3a: Students know features of the ocean floor (magnetic patterns, age, and sea-floor

    topography) provide evidence of plate tectonics.

    ; Earth Science 3b: Students know the principal structures that form at the three different kinds of plate

    boundaries.

    ; Investigation & Experimentation 1d: Formulate explanations using logic and evidence.

    ; Investigation & Experimentation 1g: Recognize the usefulness and limitations of models and theories

    as scientific representations of reality.

Learning Objectives:

    ; List the three types of plate boundaries.

    ; Describe the motion of the three types of plate boundaries (convergent, divergent, transform).

    ; Compare/Contrast the principle structures that form at each type of plate boundary.

    ; Explain how sea-floor magnetism and the age of rock at divergent plate boundaries provide evidence

    of plate tectonics.

Content-Area Vocabulary:

    Plate boundary, density, oceanic, continental, lithosphere, asthenosphere, convergent, divergent,

    transform, subduction, volcano, trench, mid-ocean ridge, rock

Pre-Requisite Concepts:

    ; Density

    ; Earth’s Structure/Interior

Materials: (for a class of 35)

    ****Ranges of values for materials are given due to varying lab group sizes and the preferences of the teacher.

    ; 18 manila folders

    ; 36 strips of “new lithosphere” (6 copies)

    ; Coloring pencils (at least six colors including blue, green, yellow & orange)

Tips & Suggestions:

    ; This lab can be done without coloring the plates, but the visual component seems to help.

    ; The procedures for Parts 1 & 2 can be done before students are given the materials, if only one class

    period is desired.

    ; Minimally, have the slits in the folders pre-cut and labeled

    ; One class of students can complete procedures 1 & 2 in about 45 minutes with all students

    completing a variety of tasks (coloring, taping, cutting)

    o This was done with one class that was a day ahead creating the plates for the rest of the

    sections.

    o If students can bring their own folders, or they can be provided, each student can create

    his/her own plates

    ; After students complete the procedure for Part 3, check to see that they are set up correctly. Many

    will have the crust coming through the wrong slita chance to identify students struggling with the

    basic-level concepts

    o Students may also struggle with how to orient/fold the new crust as it comes through the

    proper slit.

    Adapted from original lab published in Holt’s Science Spectrum- A Physical Approach

    Lab: Plate Tectonics

    Pre-Lab:

    1. Draw each type of plate boundary.

    a. Include arrows to show the type of plate movement.

    b. Include the basic principle structures that form at each type of plate boundary 2. For each boundary, write a caption explaining the movement and how each principle structure forms. 3. A sample of rock was taken from a mid-ocean ridge in the Atlantic. Older rock was found to be farther

    away from the ridge, and younger rock was found closer to the ridge. Explain this observation.

    Part 1: Creating the Plates

    1. Begin with a manila folder that has three pre-cut slits in it, labeled A, B, & C. 2. Open the folder so that you are looking at the slits

    3. Using a pencil, draw three separate lines, in line with slits A, B, & C that go from the top to the bottom of

    the folder. You should now have four (4) regions on the face of the folder.

    4. Make the middle line extra dark.

    5. Color the outer regions lightly. Do NOT use blue, green, yellow, or orange. Label these as continental

    plates

    6. Color the inner regions darker than you did in step 4. Do NOT use blue, green, yellow, or orange. Label

    these as oceanic plates.

    7. For the leftmost continental plate, draw an arrow pointing to the right. For the rightmost continental plate,

    draw an arrow pointing to the left.

    8. For the left oceanic plate, draw an arrow pointing to the left. For the right oceanic plate, draw an arrow

    pointing to the right.

    Analysis of Part 1:

    1. What type of plate boundary is occurring at:

    a. Slit A b. Slit B c. Slit C

    2. Compare or contrast the relative densities of:

    a. the two oceanic plates.

    b. a continental plate and an oceanic plate.

    3. The manila folder represents the lithosphere. What layer of Earth’s interior is beneath the lithosphere?

    4. In general, compare or contrast the densities of the two layers from Q3.

    5. Which general type of plate boundary is not represented in this model?

    6. Evaluate the model. Identify one strength and one weakness of the model as it represents real life.

    Part 2: New Lithosphere

    1. Obtain two strips of new crust from your teacher.

    2. Color these strips as directed. You will need: blue, green, yellow, & orange.

    3. Use a piece of tape to connect the two orange sections (arrow pointing in the same direction) so that it

    makes one long strip.

    Analysis of Part 2:

    7. While it is still beneath the surface, describe the form/state of matter of this new lithosphere. 8. Based on your answers to the Analysis of Part 1, at which boundary (A, B, or C) should the new

    lithosphere come through? Explain why.

    Part 3: Plate Movement

    1. Gently fold the taped strip of new lithosphere so that the colored sides are facing in. 2. From the bottom side of the folder, push the non-folded end of the new lithosphere through the

    appropriate slit/plate boundary. Only push the new lithosphere through until the all of the blue

    lithosphere is showing, then stop. Have your teacher check to make sure you are set up properly. 3. Slowly, pull the new lithosphere until each end just reaches Boundaries A & C. Green and blue colors

    should be showing.

    Analysis of Part 3:

    9. A rock sample is taken from the middle of the blue section on the right, and another is taken from the

    middle of the blue section on the left. Compare or contrast the age of those two rock samples. 10. A rock sample is taken from the blue section on the right, and another is taken from the green section on

    the right. Compare or contrast the ages of those two rock samples.

    11. When the blue sections get to boundaries A & C, will it slide over onto the continental plate, or go under

    the continental plate?

    12. What was your reasoning for your previous answer?

    Part 4: Continuing Plate Movement

    1. Pull the strip of new lithosphere until all of the blue is gone, and only the green and yellow portions of the

    strip are showing.

    Analysis of Part 4:

    13. Where did the blue portion of the lithosphere go? What is the term for this process 14. At plate boundary A, what two types of principle structures (landforms) would you expect to see present? 15. At plate boundary B, what two types of principle structures (landforms) would you expect to see present?

    Part 5: Analysis

    16. If the oldest continental rocks are 4.6 billion years old, use this model to help explain why the oldest

    ocean rocks are only 200 million years old.

    17. Near which type of plate boundary would you expect to find the oldest ocean rocks?

    18. The strip of new lithosphere has different colors, with arrows pointing in opposite directions. Explain

    why this is so.

    Part 6: Extension

    19. Use what you know about Earth’s lithospheric plates and suggest two places on the globe that Slit B

    might represent. (cite your source for where you find your answer)

    20. Use what you know about Earth’s lithospheric plates and suggest two places on the globe that Slit A

    might represent. (cite your source for where you find your answer)

    21. If the region to the leftmost side of the folder was oceanic rather than continental lithosphere, how would

    the principle structures that develop be different than the model?

    22. Assume that the two regions surrounding Slit B were continental, rather than oceanic. How would the

    principle structures be different?

    Computer Lab: eField Trip to the Hawaiian Islands

California Content Standards:

    ; Earth Science 3e: Students know there are two kinds of volcanoes: one kind with violent eruptions

    producing steep slopes and the other kind with voluminous lava flows producing gentle slopes.

    ; Earth Science 3f*: Students know the explanation for the location and properties of volcanoes that

    are due to hot spots and the explanation for those that are due to subduction.

Learning Objectives:

    ; Compare and Contrast all types of volcanoes based on size, structure and magma.

    ; Explain what role heat, pressure, and water have in making volcanoes.

    ; Define viscosity, silica content, gas content, and contrast how these relate to each type of volcano.

Content-Area Vocabulary:

     volcano, magma, lava, hot spot, eruption, pahoehoe, a’a, pyroclast, shield, composite

Pre-Requisite Concepts:

    ; Earth’s Structure/Interior

    ; Plate Tectonics

Tips & Suggestions:

    ; Since this is a website with a strange URL, create a link on your web page. Or, go to my website

    (http://achsscience.googlepages.com) and have students follow that link.

    ; Questions for the eField Trip are designed to be an introduction to volcanoes. There is no prior

    knowledge regarding volcanoes in the construction of the questions.

    o However, it is assumed that plate tectonics have already been taught.

    ; The document designated for language learners has very similar is not the same questions. There are

    some provided sentence frames and fill-in-the-blanks.

     This is to remove some of the linguistic demand on these students. Since it is an introduction, o

    the familiarity with the concepts was favored over expression of processing.

    eField Trip to the Hawaiian Islands: Volcanoes- The Earth At Work

    Slide 1

    1. What is the name of the first person you see?

    2. What do you think “superintendent” means?

    Slide 2

    3. What are two things that Joni Mae Makuakane-Jarrell will teach you today?

    Slide 4 (Lithospheric jigsaw puzzle)

    4. How many lithospheric plates are there on Earth?

    5. What do the plates float on top of?

    Slide 5 (Plate Boundary)

    6. What are the three ways that tectonic plates can move? 7. What type of plate boundary is pictured in the image on this slide?

    Slide 6 (Hot Spot cross-section)

    8. Were the Hawaiian Islands formed at a plate boundary?

    9. Draw the hot spot where the Hawaiian Islands formed.

    Slide 7 (Hot Spot side view)

    10. As the plate moves over the hot spot, what happens to older volcanoes?

    Slide 8 (Overhead map)

    11. Look at the map on this slide. What is the name for this type of map with contour lines?

    12. What can be said about the elevation along one of the contour lines? 13. Define the three types of volcanoes discussed on this page. 14. Use your mouse to move along the island. Which is the tallest volcano on this island? Is it active?

    Slide 9 (Eruption animation)

    15. What causes a volcano to erupt?

    16. Click on the volcano to cause the volcano to erupt. Do you think this is a quiet eruption or an explosive eruption?

    Slide 10 (eruption)

    17. What are the three things that erupt from a volcano?

    Slide 11 (chalkboard)

    18. What are the three types of lava?

    Slide 12 (pillow lava)

    19. Where is pillow lava produced?

    20. Is there a lot of pillow lava in the world, or not much?

    Slide 13 (Pahoehoe lava)

    21. Describe pahoehoe lava?

    22. Does this type of lava travel long or short distances?

    Slide 14 (A’a lava)

    23. Describe a’a lava?

    24. Does a’a lava move faster or slower than pahoehoe lava?

    Slide 15 (pyroclasts)

    25. What are pyroclasts?

    26. What are some of the forms that pyroclasts can take?

    Slide 16 (steam eruption)

    27. What are two examples of active volcanoes?

    28. Based on what you know about hot spots, describe the location of these volcanoes relative to a hot spot?

    Slide 17 (Aerial image of shield volcano)

    29. What are the two main types of volcanoes?

    30. Draw a shield volcano.

    31. Do shield volcanoes have quiet or explosive eruptions?

    Slide 18 (Mauna Loa)

    32. What are two examples of shield volcanoes?

    33. What is the total elevation of Mauna Loa above its sea-floor beginning?

    Slide 20 (Ocean Image)

    34. What is the name of the next Hawaiian Island to form?

    35. Where is this island currently?

    Slide 21 (Two composite volcanoes)

    36. How is the structure of a composite volcano different than a shield volcano? 37. What are two examples of a composite volcano?

    38. Are these volcanoes more or less explosive than the Hawaiian Islands?

    Slides 22-26 (Craters, Lava tubes, lava lakes, lava forests) 39. Choose two of the landforms that volcanoes develop and describe them.

    Slide 27 (ferns)

    40. After a lava flow, how does life begin to re-establish itself in the area?

    Slide 28-30 (seismographs, inflation, gas emissions) 41. Describe the three ways that geologists study volcanoes and predict eruptions.

    Slide 31-33

    42. List some of the hazards to humans that are present near an active volcano.

    Slide 34-38 (mythical images)

    43. Who is the goddess of volcanic activity?

    44. Describe the Hawaiian myths about how volcanoes and the oceans interact?

    eField Trip to the Hawaiian Islands: Volcanoes- The Earth At Work

    Slide 1

    45. What is the name of the first person you see? ___________________ 46. What do you think “superintendent” means? ____________________________________________

    Slide 2

    47. What are two things that Joni Mae Makuakane-Jarrell will teach you today?

    ____________________ ________________________________

    Slide 4 (Lithospheric jigsaw puzzle)

    48. There are ______________ lithospheric plates on Earth?

49. These plates float on top of _____________?

    Slide 5 (Plate Boundary)

    50. The three ways plates can move are: _________________ ________________ ______________.

    51. What type of plate boundary is shown in this picture? _________________

    Slide 6 (Hot Spot cross-section)

    52. Were the Hawaiian Islands formed at a plate boundary? _________________ 53. Draw the hot spot where the Hawaiian Islands formed.

    Slide 7 (Hot Spot side view)

    54. As the plate moves over the hot spot, the magma forces its way to the _____________.

    Slide 8 (Overhead map)

    55. Look at the map on this slide.

    a. What is the name for this type of map with contour lines? ____________________. 56. The elevation of all points on a contour line is the _____________ (same or different). 57. Define the three types of volcanoes discussed on this page.

    a. An active volcano_________________________________________________________.

    b. A dormant volcano________________________________________________________.

    c. An extinct volcano_________________________________________________________. 58. Use your mouse to move along the island.

    a. What is the name of the tallest volcano on this island?

    b. Is it active?

    Slide 9 (Eruption animation)

    59. What causes a volcano to erupt?

60. Click on the volcano to cause the volcano to erupt. Do you think this is a quiet eruption or an explosive eruption?

    Slide 10 (eruption)

    61. The three things that erupt from a volcano are ___________ ______________ _____________.

    Slide 11 (chalkboard)

    62. What are the three types of lava? _______________ ________________ _________________.

    Slide 12 (pillow lava)

    63. Pillow lava is produced by _________________ under water.

    64. Is there a lot of pillow lava in the world, or not much?

    Slide 13 (Pahoehoe lava)

    65. Pahoehoe lava looks like ________________________________________________________. 66. Pahoehoe lava can travel __________ distances.

    Slide 14 (A’a lava)

    67. A’a lava has a ____________________________________________________ surface.

    68. Does a’a lava move faster or slower than pahoehoe lava? _____________

    Slide 15 (pyroclasts)

    69. What are pyroclasts? _________________________________

    70. What are some of the forms that pyroclasts can take?

    Slide 16 (steam eruption)

    71. What are two examples of active volcanoes? ____________________ ______________________ 72. Are these active volcanoes likely to be on top of a hot spot?

    Slide 17 (Aerial image of shield volcano)

    73. What are the two main types of volcanoes? ___________________ ____________________ 74. Draw a shield volcano.

    75. Do shield volcanoes have quiet or explosive eruptions? ____________________

    Slide 18 (Mauna Loa)

    76. What are two examples of shield volcanoes? __________________ _______________________ 77. What is the total elevation of Mauna Loa above its sea-floor beginning? ______________

    Slide 20 (Ocean Image)

    78. What is the name of the next Hawaiian Island to form? ________________________ 79. This next island is currently ____________________. Soon it will be ____________________.

    Slide 21 (Two composite volcanoes)

    80. Composite volcanoes are __________________________________________________________.

    81. What are two examples of a composite volcano? ___________________ ___________________.

    82. Are these volcanoes more or less explosive than the Hawaiian Islands? _________ explosive.

    Slides 22-26 (Craters, Lava tubes, lava lakes, lava forests) 83. Choose two of the landforms that volcanoes develop and describe it.

    a.

    b.

    Slide 27 (ferns)

    84. After a lava flow, how does life begin to re-establish itself in the area?

    Slide 28-30 (seismographs, inflation, gas emissions)

    85. Describe the three ways that geologists study volcanoes and predict eruptions.

    a.

    b.

    c.

    Slide 31-33

    86. List some of the hazards to humans that are present near an active volcano.

    Slide 34-38 (mythical images)

    87. Who is the goddess of volcanic activity? _____________

    88. Describe the Hawaiian myths about how volcanoes and the oceans interact?

    Classifying Rocks (Teacher Page)

California Content Standards:

    ; Earth Science 3c: Students know how to explain the properties of rocks based on the physical and

    chemical conditions in which they formed, including plate tectonic processes.

    ; Investigation & Experimentation 1d: Formulate explanations by using logic and evidence.

Learning Objectives:

    ; Identify the three types of rocks and explain how they differ

    ; Compare/contrast intrusive and extrusive igneous rock, based on texture, composition, & formation

    ; Compare/Contrast clastic and chemical sedimentary rocks based on texture, composition & formation

    ; Compare/contrast foliated and non-foliated rocks based on texture, composition, & formation

Content-Area Vocabulary:

    Rock, igneous, sedimentary, intrusive, extrusive, foliated, non-foliated, clastic, chemical,

    metamorphic,

Academic Language:

    ; Forms: observation, hypothesis

    ; Functions: identify, define, compare, contrast, describe, observe, explain

Pre-Requisite Concepts:

    ; Earth’s Structure/Interior

    ; General Plate Tectonics

    ; Volcanoes

    ; Rock Types & Basic Rock Cycle

    Materials: (Amounts of necessary rocks will vary according to class size. These numbers are for one progression. Multiply as needed for the number of progressions that you will require)

    o Igneous rocks (4 total: Intrusive (1), Extrusive (2), Either (1))

    o Sedimentary rocks (5 total: Clastic (1), Chemical (1), Either (3))

    o Metamorphic rocks (3 total: Foliated (1), Non-Foliated (1), Either (1))

    ; Rock Identification Charts (one per stationonly necessary if extensions will be included)

    ; Magnifying lenses/glasses (one per station)

    o Not inherently necessary, but may allow for more detailed observation of crystal size, etc.

Tips & Suggestions:

    ; For 35 students

    o Groups of 2 = ~18 rocks stations

    o Groups of 3 = ~12 rocks stations

    o Groups of 4 = ~9 rock stations

    ; Questions are written for 5 stations. Have these stations in duplicate as needed so that the class will

    have multiple parallel progressions.

    ; Students can be given either the lab handout, or the questions for each station can be divided up and

    located at each site.

    ; Possible Extension Ideas:

    o Provide students with a chart for specifically identifying rocks (i.e. granite vs. igneous

    intrusive). Students who finish the questions faster at each station can then work to identify

    the specific rocks using the classification charts (included- taken from Prentice Hall Earth

    Science, 2006)

    Lab: Classifying Rocks

Tasks:

    1. Make physical observations of rock sets/pairs and answer questions about their formation.

    2. Use the magnifying lenses as needed to inspect and make relevant observations

    3. Challenge: If you finish the station before the class rotates, try to identify the specific rocks using the

    charts provided.

Station 1: Igneous & Sedimentary

    Given- one of these rocks is igneous and the other is sedimentary.

    1. What makes a rock “igneous”?

    2. What makes a rock classified as “sedimentary”?

    3. Classify each rock as either igneous or sedimentary. Provide your reasoning for your choices.

    4. One rock was found near a volcano. The other was dug up from the bottom of a dried riverbed.

    Which rock was likely found in each place? Explain your reasoning.

Station 2: Intrusive vs. Extrusive Igneous

    Given: These are both igneous rocks. One is intrusive and the other is extrusive

    1. Define an intrusive rock.

    2. Define an extrusive rock.

    3. What is one way that you could tell the difference between an intrusive and extrusive igneous rock

    just by looking at it.

    4. Look at the two rocks and classify each as either intrusive or extrusive.

    5. One of these rocks was found on the surface, half a kilometer away from a volcano. The other rock

    was found when a rock climber went into a cave in the volcano. Which rock was found in each

    situation, and how do you know?

Station 3: Foliated vs. Non-foliated Metamorphic

    Given: Both of these rocks are metamorphic. One is foliated, and the other is non-foliated.

    1. What makes a rock “metamorphic”?

    2. What is a foliated metamorphic rock?

    3. What is a non-foliated metamorphic rock?

    4. Look at the two rocks present here. Which of these would you consider foliated? Explain your

    reasoning.

    5. Describe where metamorphic rocks are likely to form. Explain why they would form there?

Station 4: Extrusive Igneous (Pumice), Sedimentary, Metamorphic

    Given: Each of the three main types of rocks is present here.

    1. Write one observation about each rock that clearly distinguishes it from the others. (If you told

    somebody that one observation, they would know exactly which rock to pick up)

    2. Write an observational statement that compares two of the rocks (find a similarity).

    3. Write an observational statement that contrasts two rocks, different from the two you chose in Q2

    (find a difference).

    4. Hypothesize about how AND where each rock might have been formed.

Station 5: Clastic vs. Chemical Sedimentary Rock (three rocks if possible)

    Given: All of these rocks are classified as sedimentary. Two of these rocks are clastic, and one is chemical.

    1. How does a clastic sedimentary rock form?

    2. How does a chemical sedimentary rock form?

    3. Which of these rocks are clastic and which is chemical? Explain your reasoning.

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