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View Resource Earthquake Magnitude and Intensity

In this exercise, students compare the amount of shaking caused by historic earthquakes, and use data from seismograms to determine Richter magnitude. They will also investigate moment magnitude, an alternative to Richter magnitude, and calculate a seismic moment. In the second portion of the exercise, students investigate earthquake intensity and prepare a map of intensity values from the 1994...

View Resource Locating Earthquakes

This portal provides access to a variety of resources explaining the methods used to determine the location and depth of an earthquake. The resources include the 'Travel Time Information and Calculator', an online tool that lets users choose a seismic station location and a recent earthquake, and see how long it takes different types of seismic waves to travel from the epicenter to their...

View Resource Seismic Shaking and Earthquake Engineering

In this exercise, students will investigate the effects of earthquakes on Earth materials and on buildings. Introductory materials discuss seismic shaking (ground motion), material amplification by loose or unconsolidated deposits, and the concept of fundamental period. Using the supplied data tables, they will determine peak ground acceleration, compare ground shaking on bay mud, alluvium, and...

View Resource Teaching Box: Living in Earthquake Country

This teaching box is an online assemblage of related learning concepts that focus on teaching students about how and why earthquakes cause damage. These activities are presented as an inquiry exploration, in which students learn the importance of studying past earthquakes to predict what might happen in the future. The teaching box explores seismic waves, the predictability of earthquakes at...

View Resource How Shallow Earth Structure Is Determined: A Classroom Exercise Demonstrating Seismic Refraction Use in the Real World

This lesson introduces students to a real-world application in which seismic waves are used to reveal the shallow structure of the Earth. Students will explore the concepts of reflected and refracted seismic waves and examine how refracted waves may be used to determine Earth structure. An activity in which the students investigate what is beneath the surface of a playground before the...

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