How To Be A Vibration Detective

Science Friday

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Four African elephants walking in a row along a dirt road

Credit: Shutterstock

When the earth shakes, it can mean a lot of things: an earthquake, a truck driving by, or even a World Cup victory. During the 2018 World Cup, soccer fans in Mexico jumped and cheered so much after Mexico scored a big win that earthquake sensors were set off by their celebration! By measuring the ground’s vibrations, you can learn a lot about what is happening both near and far away. In this lab activity, you will learn about researchers who have figured out how to use the frequency and amplitude of vibrations in the ground caused by elephant movements to figure out what elephants far away are up to. You’ll then use the accelerometers in a smartphone or tablet to generate and analyze seismographs of the behaviors of you and your classmates. So grab a device, and let’s get started. 
Teachers, you can find the full resource on Science Friday's website.

Independent Practice
Team-Based Learning
Team-Based Learning
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