Monday 30 May 2011

ELI in Portuguese!

We are extremely pleased to also announce today that lots of Earth Learning Ideas are now available in Portuguese. Click on the homepage of our website and follow the link.
The translations have been carried out by Professor Celso Dal Re Carneiro and his team from Departamento de Geociencias Aplicadas ao Ensino Instituto de Geociencias - Unicamp, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Brazil. Thank you all very much!

ELI in German!

We are delighted to announce that Earth Learning Idea activities are now available in German. Follow the link from our homepage and then - 'Liste aller Earth Learning Ideas'.
We are very grateful to Dirk Felzmann and his team from the Leibniz University, Hannover for translating the activities. It is an on-going project so more translations will be available regularly.

Thursday 26 May 2011

ELI in Argentina

José Sellés Martínez - of the Dept. of Geology of the University of Buenos Aires recently presented some Earth Learning Ideas at a Science Fair for teachers. He says that considering this has been a "shaking" year for the Earth, he selected all activities related to earthquakes and tsunamis. The photograph shows him demonstrating the 'Brickquake'.
He said that one of the most successful activities he tried was "human molecules" because he did not alert the teachers about what was going to happen. When he pushed the last person in the line, the wave propagation took them completely unaware! They laughed a lot, but they will never forget what "a pressure wave" means. He adds that they also had a good discussion about the power and limitations of models. It was a very successful session.
Note: José Sellés Martínez (Pepe) is responsible for the translation of ELIs into Spanish. Thank you Pepe!

Monday 23 May 2011

The fourth activity in our Mapwork series

Our latest ELI is 'Geological mapwork from models 1: plain with simple geology'. Pupils are shown a photograph of a plain and then
are asked to cut out a 3D paper model of a flat plain-like area. There are two versions, one with horizontal rocks and one with dipping rocks. A table of the progression and spiralling of spatial thinking skills involved through this series is given on the final page of this ELI.
Related activities can be seen on our home page.

Monday 16 May 2011

Earth in space

The image shows the Milky Way taken from PhotopicSkySurvey. You can zoom in and out of the image, look around and superimpose names.
Have you tried any of our ELI Earth in Space activities?
Craters on the Moon
Playground planets
Why does the Sun disappear?
Have you got some good ideas for some more activities in this category? Please send them to us if you have either via the 'comments' on this post or by email.

Monday 9 May 2011

Geological mapwork - third in the series

Today, we have published our third Geological Mapwork from scratch activity. This one investigates a valley with dipping geology. Pupils will be able to draw their own cross sections and 3D models. They are shown a photograph of a straight valley and are then given a simple geological map of such a landform, with beds dipping towards the south. They are also encouraged to use the British Geological Survey's OpenGeoscience maps - instructions for doing this are given.
The drawing of these topographical and geological cross sections involves spatial thinking skills. The more complex the cross sections become, the more spatial interpretation is needed, including interpolation and extrapolation skills.
This latest activity is one of many that can be found on our website.

Monday 2 May 2011

Following last week's glacial/periglacial ELI

On our current glacial/periglacial theme, have you tried 'Grinding and gouging: how moving ice can grind away rocks'? After trying this activity, pupils will be able to
• explain that ice alone will not scratch rock;
• demonstrate that ice carrying sediment will scratch rock;
• realise that ice will scrape any soil and weathered, loose material from the surface of the underlying rock;
• work out the possible direction of ice movement;
• show that other evidence is needed to determine the actual direction of ice movement;
• explain how a valley glacier could erode a deep, U- shaped valley, given enough time.
This is one of many Earth-related teaching ideas in the Earth energy category on our website.