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ERIC Number: EJ789709
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Nov
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 6
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8555
Pangea Redux
Renton, Jack; Repine, Tom; Hemler, Deb
Science Teacher, v70 n8 p62-66 Nov 2003
The authors relate that they have conducted short courses on using constructivist techniques to teach historical geology over the past four years at regional National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) meetings. They realized that although most course participants were familiar with the basic tenets of plate tectonics, the authors were always greeted with silence and confusion whenever they ask participants if they are aware that the formation and breakup of Pangea was most likely not a unique event in Earth's history. Based on these experiences, the authors conclude that a basic misconception about the cyclic nature of plate tectonic theory inhibits some teachers and students from fully appreciating how dynamic Earth has been and will be over the course of geologic time. In this article, the authors present an activity that uses Wilson Cycle models to challenge misconceptions about plate tectonics. The activity begins with a review of basic plate tectonics. (Contains 6 figures and 1 online resource.)
National Science Teachers Association. 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201-3000. Tel: 800-722-6782; Fax: 703-243-3924; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A