Tuesday 28 May 2013

Partial melting - changing the chemistry of the planet

'Partial melting; simple process, huge global impact' - one of the many activities in our plate tectonics series. This activity explains how partial melting, coupled with plate tectonics, has changed the chemistry of our planet.

Each time that partial melting takes place during different stages of the plate tectonic cycle, materials with different chemical and physical makeup are formed. The starting point for these processes is the mantle, where the most abundant elements are oxygen, silicon, magnesium and iron in that order. However the Earth’s crust contains much more silicon and oxygen and much less magnesium and iron than the mantle. How this happens is explained in this activity.
This is one of many innovative plate tectonics activities to be found on the ELI website. Other ideas are listed in teaching strategies.

Monday 20 May 2013

Visualising the phases of the Moon

Trying to visualise the phases of the Moon is very difficult. To make it easier, try the latest Earthlearningidea, 'Polystyrene moon; visualising the phases of the Moon using a ball on a stick'.
This activity uses a ball and stick to simulate the Moon and a light beam to simulate the Sun to see what the phases of the Moon look like from the ‘Earth’.
Visit our website for lots more good ideas for teaching Earth science.

Please note: ELI is now on Twitter and waiting for your tweets!

Monday 6 May 2013

Splat! Testing the plasticity of clay

The new Earthlearningidea published today is 'Testing rocks 2 - Splat!' Pupils investigate the relationship between the plasticity of clay and its water content by dropping a clay ball on to the floor and measuring its spread. Needless to say this is a very popular activity!
We should be pleased to receive your comments and suggestions about this or any of the other 150 + innovative teaching ideas, all free to download from our website. You can search by activity, topic or by category to find the subject you need.