Science Teaching Series

Internet Resources

I. Developing Scientific Literacy

II. Developing Scientific Reasoning

III. Developing Scientific Understanding

IV. Developing Scientific Problem Solving

V. Developing Scientific Research Skills

VI. Resources for Teaching Science

Foundation Level Science - Geodynamics

Candidates demonstrate an understanding of the foundations of the geodynamics contained in the Science Content Standards for California Public Schools (1998) as outlined in the Science Framework for California Public Schools: Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve (2002) from an advanced standpoint. To ensure a rigorous view of geodynamics and its underlying structures, candidates have a deep conceptual knowledge of the subject matter. Candidates understand that Earth’s features can be explained by a variety of dynamic processes that have occurred in the past and continue to occur. They understand that plate tectonics account for most of the important features of Earth’s surface and major geologic events. Candidates explain how surficial processes and agents such as waves, wind, water, and ice are slowly modifying Earth’s land surface. They understand how weathering, transport, and deposition of sediment are related to this reshaping. Candidates are familiar with evidence from rocks that allows us to understand geologic history and the evolution of life on Earth. They can use observed properties of rocks and minerals to determine their processes of formation. Candidates understand that most of the energy on the Earth comes from the sun. They know that energy from the sun heats Earth unevenly, causing air movements that result in changing weather patterns. They use their understanding of heat to explain the many phenomena on Earth’s surface that are affected by the transfer of energy through radiation and convection.

  1. 0002  Tectonic Processes and Features (SMR 2.1)

    1. Diagram the features that provide evidence for plate tectonics

    2. Summarize the thermal processes driving plate movement

    3. Explain how density and buoyancy are related to plate tectonics

    4. Describe types of plate boundaries

    5. Relate the causes of volcanoes, earthquakes, and earth resources to tectonic processes

    6. Summarize earthquake processes in terms of epicenter, focal mechanism, distance, and materials, and the role various factors play in the amount of damage caused by an earthquake

  2. 0003  Rock Formation (SMR 2.2)

    1. Diagram and explain the rock cycle

    2. Describe relative and absolute dating techniques, including how half-lives are used in radiometric dating

    3. Compare uniformitarianism and catastrophism

  1. 0004  Shaping Earth’s Surface: Surficial Processes and Features (SMR 2.3)

    1. Describe the dynamic processes of erosion, deposition, and transport

    2. Describe coastal processes including beach erosion and natural hazards

    3. Describe the effects of natural hazards, including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides, and floods, on natural and human-made habitats and environmental and human responses to those events

  2. 0005  Energy in the Earth System (SMR 2.4)

    1. Diagram the water cycle and describe interrelationships of surface and sub-surface reservoirs

    2. Explain daily and seasonal changes in the sky (i.e., the sun’s position and the intensity and duration of sunlight)

    3. Analyze the uneven heating of Earth by the sun

    4. Discuss the effects of air movements on weather

    5. Describe the energy transfer processes of convection, conduction, and radiation in relation

      to the atmosphere/ocean and Earth’s interior structure

    6. Interpret weather maps to predict weather patterns