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Drifting Continents and Plate Tectonics - 6th Grade

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William Begoyan

on 27 September 2016

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Transcript of Drifting Continents and Plate Tectonics - 6th Grade

Drifting Continents and Plate Tectonics
Alfred Wegener
In 1910, this German scientist hypothesized that continents move.
According to Wegener, all the continents were once joined.
He called this supercontinent

Plate Tectonics
The Earth's lithosphere is broken down in to several separate sections called
Wegener's Evidence
Jigsaw Earth: Most of the continents can fit together like jigsaw pieces.

By: Mr Begoyan
Page 13 in ISN
(pages 144-162
in textbook)

Avid EQ: Does the surface of the Earth change? How?
Fossils: You can find fossils of the same organism on opposite sides of the world.
Climate: There is evidence that parts of Africa were once very cold, while an island in the Arctic was once very warm.
Wegener's Rejection
Wegener's hypothesis was rejected during his lifetime (1880-1930), as he was not able to explain how the continents moved.
No one believed his ideas.
It wasn't until the 1960s when his hypothesis was explained.
Plate Boundaries
The plates are always in motion, forming one of three boundary types.
Spreading/Divergent boundary
Separating from each other as hot molten rock from the mantle pushes up.
When this happens to oceanic crust, we call it
sea-floor spreading.
Rift valleys
form at the point of separation.
Colliding/Convergent Boundary
Two plates smack into each other.
If both plates are continental, they will crumple against each other. Large
mountain ranges
form at this location.
An oceanic plate collides with a continental plate.
The thinner oceanic crust sinks below the thicker continental crust and melts into the mantle.
is formed.
Sliding/Transform Boundary
Two plates slide past each other, going in opposite directions.
Responsible for most earthquakes.

Who was Alfred Wegener?
What was the name of Wegener's supercontinent?
What evidence did Wegener propose to support his theory?
Was Wegener's hypothesis accepted?
Is the Earth's lithosphere one giant piece?
What are some of the ways that the plates interact with each other?
Using visuals (and words), describe the different types of plate boundaries on page 12 of your ISN.
Full transcript