The Theory of Pangea
Pangea and Continental Drift
Introduction: Scientist for hundreds of years have tried to figure out why the earth's continents are shaped and positioned on the earth as they are now. In the 1700's scientists thought that a series of major natural disasters, like floods and volcanic eruptions, caused the continents to drastically change.
In the 1800's scientists thought that gradual changes in earth's crust as well as natural disasters shaped the earth's continents to create their current shape.
In the early 1900's a new theory was developed. This theory was the theory of continental drift. The theory of continental drift begins about 200 to 225 million years ago with the super-continent Pangea. The theory of Pangea is the idea that all the continents were once joined together as one giant super-continent, which eventually started to split apart and create the smaller, spread out, continents that we have now.
Your Challenge: Today you are going to investigate the theory of Pangea.
In your web-quest report you should answer the questions above. You should also find pictures that show what happened to the earth's surface during the separation of Pangea.
- What does the word Pangea mean?
- What scientist came up with this theory?
- What evidence supports the theory of Pangea?
To start your report, try these sites! Historical Perspectives http://pubs.usgs.gov/publications/text/historical.html Pangea Super-continent http://www.geology.com/pangea.htm Science @ NASA
Continents in Collision: Pangea Ultima
http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2000/ast06oct_1.htm MESOZOIC FOSSILS http://www.chara.gsu.edu/~weinman/mesozoic.html
To continue your research...
Try these key phrases in a search engine!
Search Engines: Phrases to look up: google.com Pangea Theory yahoo.com Plate Tectonics dogpile.com Continental Drift looksmart.com Continent Formation