earth processes
natural phenomena
periodic tables


Rock and Mineral Collection
Rock and Mineral
Collection of the US

Rocks & Minerals Placemat
Rocks & Minerals

Earthquake Watch Kit
Earthquake Watch Kit

Teacher's Best - The Creative Process

Geology & the Geosphere Educational Posters, Charts & Maps
for the science classroom and home schoolers.

science > GEOLOGY | earth processes < geography < social studies
Rocks & Minerals, Art Print
Rocks & Minerals,
Art Print

Geology (Gk, ge=earth, logos=word, reason) is the scientific study of the solid physical properties, and history of the processes that shape Earth, the only Life bearing planet.

Geologist study the lithosphere (crust) with related disciplines of mineralogy, petrology, soil science, oceanography and hydrology, glaciology, and atmospheric studies of meteorology and climatology.

Geologists help locate and manage the Earth's natural resources: fossil fuels (petroleum and coal), metals, gemstones, minerals, and elements.

Geologists establish the age of the Earth at about 4.6 billion years, and determined that the Earth's lithosphere is fragmented into tectonic plates that move.


Louis Agassiz
Mary Anning
Roy Chapman Andrews
Georges Cuvier
Charles Darwin
Archibald Geikie
Stephen Jay Gould


John Stevens Henslow
James Hutton
Johann Gottlob Lehmann
Sir Charles Lyell
Gideon Algernon Mantell
Roderick Murchison


David Dale Owen
John Wesley Powell
Eugene Merle Shoemaker
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Alfred Wegener

National Geographic Dynamic Earth, Plate Techtonics, Poster
National Geographic Dynamic Earth, Plate Techtonics, Poster

Earth's Fractured Surface Map, Poster
Earth's Fractured Surface Map, Poster

Like the pieces of a giant jigsaw puzzle, slabs of rocky crust known as tectonic plates fit together to form the Earth's outer shell. The puzzle changes as the plates slide over the hotter, softer rocks beneath them. Moving by mere inches annually, they reshape continents and oceans basins over the millions of years by colliding, separating and scraping past one another with relentless force. These interactions set off earthquakes, fire up volcanoes, and wrinkle the Earth's crust into mountains, valleys, and deep-sea trenches.

Most earthquakes occur near plate boundaries, where rock grinds past rock. Friction keeps the plate edges from sliding smoothly. The longer they remain stuck, the more strain builds and the more violent the snap and resulting vibrations – the earthquake.

Subduction Zones are when one plate dives beneath another plate. Oceanic plates subduct under continents and perhaps under other oceanic plates as well, forming trenches that mark their descent. Where continental plates run into each other, they buckle, creating ranges such as the Himalaya.

Transform Faults occur when tectonic plates shift past each other horizontally - a distinct type of strike-slip fault. The San Andreas Fault is a slow creep with frequent small jumps and rare big ones.

Volcanoes are magma rising to the surface from insie the Earth mainly at subduction zones and spreading centers. The edge of the Pacific Basin – the 30,000 mile long Ring of Fire– is especially volatile, with about 70 percent of the world's more than 500 historically active volcanoes.

Hot spots are the scrattering of places where magma burns through a tectonic plate. Each hot spot likely marks the top of a plume of semimolten rock that rises many hundreds of miles inside the Earth. As a plate slowly passes above, the plume melts into it, creating a chain of volcanoes such as those in the Hawaiian Islands.

Spreading Centers are where the tectonic plates move apart allowing magma to rise in the resulting rift. Under the oceans this process has created the 46,600-mile-long Mid-Ocean Ridge system, segmented by faults, that snake around the globe. On land the process is creating the East African Rift System

Geosphere: Rock Cycle Poster
Rock Cycle Poster

Geosphere: Rock Cycle

Poster Text: In the rock cycle, rock is neither created nor destroyed, but is continually recycled. Rock changes both physically and chemically, and is redistributed and transformed. Under the crust of the Earth is a circulating layer of liquid molten rock known as magma. When magma cools and solifies underground or above ground it becomes igneous rock. Igneous rock, through heat and pressure can be transformed into metamorphic rock. Once rocks are ... on the surface of the Earth, weather and erosion produce sediment. The sediment is transported and deposited in layers, which undergo compaction to become sedimentary rock. Sedimentary rock can also become exposed to the same process that created it. Some rock becomes magma again through tectonic areas known as subduction zones. It is at these zones that one tectonic plate is pushed down under another....

Geosphere: Plate Tectonics Poster
Geosphere: Plate Tectonics

Geosphere: Plate Tectonics

Poster Text: The earth upon which we stand may seem solid and still, but in fact is in constant motion. That motion is explained in the theory of plate tectonics. The outermost layer of the Earth, the lithosphere, contains the continental crust and oceanic crusts. Those crusts are divided into separate land masses know as plates. These plates are floating on a molten layer of magma and rock called the ... and moving toward each other due to ....

Volcano Poster


Volcanoes are openings in a planet's surface where hot, molten (melted) rock, ash and gas escape from below the surface.

• more natural phenomena posters
mountain posters

Erosion & Weathering, Earth Processes Poster

Earth Processes Poster Series

volcanoes, earthquakes, plate tectonics, faults & folds, erosion & weathering, glaciers, rocks & minerals

Earthquakes Art Print
Art Print


• more natural phenomena posters

Minerals Chart Poster
Minerals Chart Poster

Minerals are naturally occurring substances formed through geological processes. A mineral has a characteristic chemical composition, a highly ordered atomic structure and specific physical properties; in comparison a rock is an aggregate of minerals and may not have a specific chemical composition. Minerals range from pure elements and simple salts to very complex compositions of silicates with thousands of known forms. The softest mineral is talc, the hardest mineral is diamond (April Birthstone).

The study of minerals is called mineralogy. Mining is the extraction of valuable minerals or other geological materials from the earth.

Examples pictured above: gold, diamond, sulpher, copper, sphalerite, pyrite, chalcopyrite, cinnabar, stibnite, galena, fluorite, corundum, quartz, hematite, rutile, cassiterite, agate, amethyst, magnetite, calcite, rhodochrosite, malachite, azurite, dolomite, ... wulfenite, barite, celestite, anglesite, gypsum, apatite, turquoise, garnet, tourmaline, topaz, beryl, spodumene, orthoclase, analcite, scolectiz.

Introduction to Minerals Geology Chart, Poster
Introduction to Minerals Geology Chart, Poster

Introduction to Rocks Geology Chart, Poster
Introduction to Rocks Geology Chart, Poster

Minerals of the World Geology Chart, Poster
Minerals of the World Geology Chart, Poster

Introduction to Gemstones, Poster
Introduction to Gemstones, Poster

Gemstones, Natural History Museum, Poster
Gemstones, Natural History Museum,

Mineraux I Chart
Mineraux I Chart

Colossal Poster - Rocks and Minerals
Colossal Poster -
Rocks and Minerals

Teaching Poster Set: Geology-Rocks and Minerals
Teaching Poster Set:
Geology-Rocks and Minerals

Rock & Minerals Mini Bulletin Board Set
Rock & Minerals Mini Bulletin Board Set

Meteorite Found in 1931 in Henbury, Central Australia, Photographic Print
Meteorite Found in 1931 in Henbury, Central Australia, Photographic Print

Meteorites are natural objects originating in outer space that survives impact with Earth's surface.

Most meteorites are stony, about 5% are iron-nickel alloys, and about 1% are a stony-iron combination.

astronomy - space phenomena

Tapestry of Time & Terrain
Tapestry of Time & Terrain is a US Geological Survey web site featuring a combined geologic map and shaded relief image that reveals the geologic history of North America through the interrelation of rock type, topography and time. Regional surface processes as well as continent-scale tectonic events are exposed in the three dimensions of space and the fourth dimension, geologic time. PDF poster available for free download.

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last updated 12/8/13