Plate Tectonics WebQuest

Welcome to the Plate Tectonics WebQuest!

Almost all of the processes that shape our Earth are affected by what is going on deep under the crust. The formation of volcanoes is evidence that the inside of the earth is not just solid rock, and the growth of mountains implies immense forces at work to push mountains so high. In fact, the movement of material in the Earth even affects the weather that we have. Many scientists believe that life would not be possible on Earth if it were not for the activity going on miles beneath our feet.

Task
When you finish this web quest you should be able to:
• Explain the theory of plate tectonics
• Indicate some of the evidence that supports the theory of plate tectonics
• Explain how plate tectonics has shaped the surface of the Earth
• Determine what kind of plate boundary a given location has
• Describe the driving force for plate movement
• Explain some of the ways that plate tectonics affect humanity

Process
Use the website links provided, (or any others you want), and answer the questions on your “webquest” answer sheet. Each group of questions has a recommended website link to search for the answers. Use the space provided on the answer sheet to answer the questions. You can also write your answers on a separate piece of paper or use a word processing application to type up your responses to each question.

TOPIC ONE: ALFRED WEGENER & CONTINENTAL DRIFT

Recommended Link For questions 1-3
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aso/databank/entries/do12we.html

TOPIC TWO: PLATE BOUNDARIES

Recommended Link For questions 4-8
http://pubs.usgs.gov/publications/text/understanding.html

TOPIC THREE: SEAFLOOR SPREADING

Recommended Link For question 9
http://www.uwsp.edu/geo/faculty/ritter/glossary/s_u/sea_flr_spread.html

TOPIC FOUR: HEAT TRANSFER

Recommended Link For questions 10-11
http://pubs.usgs.gov/publications/text/unanswered.html

TOPIC FIVE: PLATE TECTONICS AND THE EARTH

Recommended Link For questions 12-13
http://pubs.usgs.gov/publications/text/tectonics.html