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The Theory of Plate Tectonics
This is a brief overview of the Theory of Plate Tectonics. According to the theory, the Earth's surface layer, or lithosphere, consists of seven large and 18 smaller plates that move and interact in various ways. Along their boundaries, they converge, diverge, and slip past one another, creating the Earth's seismic and volcanic activities. These plates lie atop a layer of partly molten rock called the asthenosphere. The plates can carry both continents and oceans, or exclusively one or the other. The site also explains interaction at the plate boundaries, which causes earthquakes, volcanoes and other forms of mountain building.
Intended for grade levels:
  • Intermediate (3-5)
  • Middle (6-8)
Type of resource:
  • Text:
    • Ref. material
Subject:
  • Geological Sciences:
    • Geology
    • Geophysics
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Copyright and Other Restrictions Information is Unknown
DLESE Catalog ID: DLESE-000-000-005-454
Educational standards:
  • National Science Education Standards (NSES):
    • K-4:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Changes in earth and sky
      • G - History and nature of science:
        • Science as a human endeavor
    • 5-8:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Earth's history
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Publisher: South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve