Earth History

GEO-Logic Problem: Sailing the Surface Oceanographic Currents

This logic problem in a grid format is designed to help students develop logical reasoning and problem-solving skills. In addition to developing skill sets, the content knowledge of the students will be increased in the area of the names and locations of surface oceanographic currents. Extension exercises have students address the geographic and temperature distribution across currents and ocean basins.

Plate Boundary Research Project

Students will become experts on the plate tectonics of a specific region, by either researching volcanic activity or earthquake activity associated with the tectonic activity of a specific region. 

Students will use Diigo, a social bookmarking site, to collaborate on and manage their research online. 

Students will also create and deliver a 15 minute oral presentation using MS Powerpoint or Google Presenter to share what they have learned and help them manage the flow of their presentation.

Students will:

The Academy of Natural Sciences' Bicentennial

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University is the oldest natural science research institution and museum in the North America. Located in Philadelphia, PA, the institution celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2012. As part of a year-long bicentennial celebration, an online supplement to the museum’s bicentennial exhibit was created in Google Earth with a series of educational activities, targeted for middle school science educators and students.

Discovering Plate Boundaries - a Suggested Modification

The "Discovering Plate Boundaries" exercise:, developed by Dale Sawyer at Rice University, requires students to examine global maps and observe, describe, and classify data. No prior knowledge of plate tectonics, geography, or Earth science is required for students. This activity has been popular in middle school, high school, and university classrooms, at the beginning or the end of a tectonics unit.

Image of the Day

An image is a powerful tool for Earth and space science instruction.  An image can capture a feature, a process, and/or an event and allow us to bring that snapshot to our students.  Although images may be used throughout a class period, an image can be used at the very beginning of a class to engage students and direct classroom discussion for the day.

We invite you to contribute to our collection of examples of how you utilize an “image of the day.”

Pack A Truck for a Paleontological Excavation

I came across this exercise on the Project Exploration website and have used it as an in-class exercise for a course I teach on Dinosaurs.  My goals are to get students to think about what is involved in preparing and carrying out a field expedition, as well as to engage students in a basic quantitative exercise.  I like to expose my students to the process of science, and in this case, what it takes to think about and prepare for an expedition in the desert.