Teach your students how earthquakes happen

What is it? Following last weeks disastrous events in Haiti, Earthquakes may have been a topic of discussion in your classroom either in terms of humanitarian relief or actually enquiring about the physical causes and effects of Earthquakes.

The BBC has a brilliant brief animated sideshow that explains the causes and effects of Earthquakes which makes a very complex issue seem very simple.  It is also available in a printable PDF format if you so desire to use as handouts.

How can I use this in my classroom? Here is a great link to a BBC News Article on the Haiti Earthquakes explaining the turn of events along with a video clip.  (please note that the clip may not be appropriate for all students due to it's graphic nature - use at your own discretion.) Ask you students what they know about Earthquakes and why they occur?

Brainstorm class ideas on the board and then share the BBC Earthquake Explanation animation.

Discuss how some countries on fault lines will always be subject to Earthquakes in the future and how they can also cause Tsunami's and spread danger far wider than just the centre of the quake.  Ask students what can be done in these areas to minimise the effects of Earthquakes?

Students can then record their knowledge of Earthquakes either in whatever format you desire.  Write a survival story based on their knowledge learnt or research some famous Earthquakes from the Past.

Finally it would be great if you could brainstorm a class or school fundraiser that could help the victims of the Earthquake in Haiti.

Look forward to hearning of any great lesson ideas you have realted to the Earthquakes.