# Lesson Questions Plate Webquest

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http://www.montereyinstitute.org/courses/AP%20Environmental%20Science/course%20files/multimedia/noaa/lesson01.html
Lesson Questions:
How many quakes occur around the world per year?
Where do quakes and volcanoes occur?
Draw and label the layers of the earth.
Where is tectonic activity concentrated?
Describe the lithosphere.
Describe the asthenosphere.
What heats up the asthenosphere?
Describe the tree plate boundaries, what is created, what is destroyed, what occurs here…
1)
2)
3)
Global Impact:
Why is the term tectonics fitting?
Plates of the Earth:
Draw and Label the puzzle of plates at the end of the puzzle.
Drilling for core samples:
a.
Describe how the plates are moving relative to one another.
b.
What type of plate boundary is this?
c.
What does the sea floor topography look like in this area
Earthquakes and Plates:
a.
Notice that earthquakes are mainly concentrated in narrow bands. Explain why.
b.
Which parts of the United States have the most frequent earthquakes?
Look again at the map, and see that earthquakes can begin close to the Earth's surface or deep inside the crust.
Geologists classify earthquakes as shallow (those that start 70 kilometers or less underground), deep (earthquakes
beginning 300 km or more below the surface), and intermediate (quakes between 70 and 300 km). Earthquakes can
only start within the solid rock of the lithospheric plates, not in the soft mantle below.
c.
Shallow earthquakes occur at all plate boundaries, and even in the middle of plates. Deep earthquakes only occur at some
plate boundaries - why?
d.
Why might the depth of an earthquake be related to the amount of damage it causes?
Now let’s consider two of the most important earthquakes to strike the United States.
In 1906, a shallow earthquake struck San Francisco. The ground surface jumped horizontally as much as 30 feet
along a 300-mile long crack. Thousands of people died in collapsed buildings and in fires that swept the city after the
quake.
e.
Locate the site of the San Francisco earthquake on the map above - it began at 38&ordm;N 122&ordm; W. Is this close to a plate
boundary?
f.
What type of plate boundary was responsible for the earthquake?
The largest known earthquake to hit the continental United States began near the town of New Madrid, Missouri in
1812. It affected an area more than 10 times larger than the 1906 San Francisco earthquake - the shaking even rang
church bells more than 1,000 miles away. The Mississippi River was thrown out of its channel and ran backwards for
a time, and the terrain was so distorted that lifelong residents got lost on their own land.
g.
Locate the site of the New Madrid earthquake on the map above - it began at 37.5&ordm;N 90&ordm; W. Is this close to a plate boundary?
h.
Critical Thinking Question
The 1812 New Madrid earthquake was actually only one of a series of powerful quakes to hit the area in the winter of 1811-1812,
including 3 that are among the 10 largest earthquakes in U.S. history. Fortunately, very few people were killed in these events. The next
time the area experiences such an enormous quake, how do you think the death toll would compare? Justify your answer.
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