Unit - MS History of Earth

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This unit plan develops a two week map to teach the standards from NGSS for Earth history. The unit plan is for a 7th grade science class and the standards that will are being taught are the following:

  • MS-ESS2-2. Construct an explanation based on evidence for how geoscience processes have changed Earth’s surface at varying time and spatial scales.
  • MS-ESS2-3. Analyze and interpret data on the distribution of fossils and rocks, continental shapes, and seafloor structures to provide evidence of the past plate motions.

They way this unit its designed is with the introduction of the parts of Earth, its layers, and why it moves. This topic gets developed on the following lessons, teaching deeper material about the tectonic plates, and what consequences Earth suffers because of their movement.

After the introduction of our planet, students will learn about surface weathering and how it shapes the world. The lesson will include erosion, water, ice, and wind. With a selection of images and examples, students will be able to see the effect of weathering on Earth.

The following main topic is catastrophes. With this subject, students will be able to see how impactful a major catastrophe could to Earth. The topic is divided in 3 lessons where earthquakes, volcanoes, and meteor impacts are described. With real examples, students will be able to analyze the catastrophes and see what are the consequences that the catastrophe did.

The next lesson will include part of the tectonic plates lesson. Students will be able to learn the other consequences of this movement and the creation of mountain ranges and islands.

To finalize the instruction, two lessons will be about Pangaea. During these lessons, students will be able to support the theory of one continent 250 million years ago with the analysis of species found in different continents. This lessons will also reinforce the tectonic plate lesson when the movement of Pangaea is presented.

A final assessment on the last day of the unit will be presented. With this assessments, the whole comprehension of the unit will be evaluated.

Lesson Plan Resources

Teacher Instructions
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