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ALEX Lesson Plan Resources
ALEX Lesson Plans
How could the continents move? A Lab Activity
Students will begin this inquiry-based activity by predicting how the continents of Earth could move over time. Next, students will complete a lab activity in collaborative groups, in which they will create a model showing how Earth's internal heat energy can create convection currents that result in plate movements. Lastly, students will use their model to explain how Earth's tectonic plates move over millions of years. This lesson results from a collaboration between the Alabama State Department of Education and ASTA.
Plate Tectonics: Convection Model- Plates Go With the Flow
This lesson is the third of a three-part unit on plate tectonics, which includes hands-on, inquiry-based activities. Students will learn about the relationship between temperature and density using lava lamps. The students will also model a theory for the mechanism that drives tectonic plate movement by using a hot plate and water to produce convection cells or currents, and food coloring gels to make the currents visible.