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For Teachers



Where to go from here...

Perhaps you have never felt a major earthquake. On the other hand, you may be able to tell many stories of your quake experiences. Either way, earthquakes are constantly reshaping the surface of the earth. Earthquakes help us understand how the islands of Japan were formed, why California has such a variety of mountains, what caused the Himalayas to form north of India, where to drill for oil or mine minerals...

Whether good or bad, earthquakes are a natural consequence of living on this planet. They have been a mystery for people for thousands of years, and they will continue to fascinate us for many more years to come. But slowly we are learning more.

You can play a significant part in this learning game by becoming a "scientific Sherlock Holmes" -- becoming a geologist. You might begin exploring more of geology by visiting a museum or a university geology department, or checking your local library, or writing a letter to a geologist near you. Perhaps you can become famous some day for unraveling some of the mysteries of the earth. Will you discover a way to predict or prevent earthquakes? Will you design 100-story skyscrapers that easily stand up to a large quake? Will you be able to accurately explain earthquakes better than anyone has yet done? Will you be the geologist?


More about tomorrow's earthquake

Follow-up research for extended learning

What different methods have people used in the past and in recent years to predict earthquakes? Describe each method and the people that used it. How successful was each method? How scientific was the method? Here are some examples to research:

a) Unusual animal behavior
b) Radon gas
c) Location of planets and other astronomical objects
d) Electromagnetic or sound waves emitted from the ground
e) Measurement of ground movement near a fault line



Last updated on June 2, 2007 2002