Shape it Up

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In this online activity, learners see simulations of how processes shape the Earth, and see estimates of how long these processes take. Learners see a before picture and after picture and need to choose a process (e.g. wind, water, volcanoes, glaciers) and a time span (e.g. 100 years, 10,000 years, 2,000,000 years) that could be responsible for the change. Use this as an introduction to Earth's changes or as a quick review. When learners set up a free account at Kinetic City, they can answer bonus questions at the end of the activity as a quick assessment. As a larger assessment, learners can complete the Smart Attack game after they've completed several activities.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
free per student

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Simulation


Materials List (per student)

  • computer with online access
  • mouse


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Processes
      • Volcanoes and Plate Tectonics
      • Weather and Climate
    • Earth's History
      • Geologic Time


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • use mouse
  • touch


Components that are part of this resource:

Includes assesments for student learning:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • American Association for the Advancement of Science


  • All rights reserved, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2009

Funding Source:

  • National Science Foundation