Lunar and Planetary Institute






Geologic Principles and Plate Tectonics

In Texas, teachers are expected to teach fundamental geologic principles, such as sequential layering of rocks, constructive and destructive forces that create land features, plate tectonics, and the changing surface of the Earth.

3.6 B The student is expected to identify that the surface of the Earth can be changed by forces such as earthquakes and glaciers
4.10 B The student is expected to draw conclusions about "what happened before" using fossils or charts and tables
5.12 A The student is expected to interpret how land forms are the result of a combination of constructive and destructive forces such as deposition of sediment and weathering
6.6 C The student is expected to identify forces that shape features of the Earth including uplifting, movement of water, and volcanic activity
8.14 A The student is expected to predict land features resulting from gradual changes such as mountain building, beach erosion, land subsidence, and continental drift

Preliminary Concepts
Before they can understand these principles, students must first understand erosion, deposition, and volcanism.

Misconceptions and Educational Research

Activities about Geologic Principles and Plate Tectonics

Content Resources for the Pre-Service Educator

Potential Questions or Issues