Teacher Site Map
Earth Systems Science Core
Science Home Page
USOE

Ready, Set, Glue

Tectonic plates meet in one of three ways;

  1. Slide past each other - transform
  2. Move away from each other - divergent
  3. Plow into each other - convergent
 
In this activity we will model the movement of each type of plate boundary. After the activity you should be able to describe the interaction between the boundaries.
 

Materials:

  • Model printouts
  • Scissors
 
Safety concerns: Be sure to keep all sharp instrument safety rules. As with all science lab activities, the most important safety rule is to follow all teacher directions.
 

Transform Boundary

At a transform boundary, the plates strike and slip past each other.

 

Try It!

Here is a model to create.

Printout the model.

This is what the completed model should look like, and a video of the model in action.

 

Divergent Boundary

At a divergent boundary the plates move away from each other, creating new crust.

 

Try It!
Make the model! Print the following parts of the model:

This is what the completed model should look like, and a video of the model in action.

 

Convergent Boundary

At a convergent boundary the plates smash into each other When they collide they can either buckle to create mountain ranges, or one plate is forced under the other to be destroyed and recycled. This is called subduction.

 

Try It!

You can make a model! You will need both the top and bottomparts of the model. If you need help, this is what the completed modelshould look like, and this is a videoof the model in action.

 
What type of plate boundary forms mountains?

Convergent Boundaries
Divergent Boundaries
Transform Boundaries
What type of plate boundary creates new sea floor crust?

Convergent Boundaries
Divergent Boundaries
Transform Boundaries
What type of plate boundary destroys and recycles Earth's crust?

Convergent Boundaries
Divergent Boundaries
Transform Boundaries
What type of plate boundary has plates that slide past and sometimes stick to each other?

Convergent Boundaries
Divergent Boundaries
Transform Boundaries
What type of plate boundary is the San Andreas Fault part of?

Convergent Boundaries
Divergent Boundaries
Transform Boundaries
What type of plate boundary is found at the Mid-Atlantic Ridge?

Convergent Boundaries
Divergent Boundaries
Transform Boundaries
 
Review science lab safety rules here.

Get the plug-ins: Get Adobe Acrobat Reader and Get Quicktime Player. (The QuickTime plug-in is needed to play sounds and movies correctly.)

Want to share photos of you or your friends doing this activity? Send it in an e-mail with the following information:

  1. The title of the activity
  2. The URL (Internet address)
  3. Your name.

Remember that no pictures can be used that show student faces or student names on it. 

Teachers should view the Teacher Site Map to relate Sci-ber text and the USOE Earth Systems Science core.

 


Updated October 24, 2008 by: Glen Westbroek

Science Home Page | Curriculum Home Page | Earth Systems Science Core | USOE Home Page


Copyright Utah State Office of Education.