Teachable moments

 “Providing up-to-the-minute information on one of Earth’s most powerful natural forces.”

Earthquake Teachable Moments  is a project that provides information about topical earthquakes for schoolteachers, students and the general public. Newsworthy earthquakes present a unique chance to educate people about the science of earthquakes and our planet’s internal structure. The project is run by the Liverpool Earth Observatory at the University of Liverpool with support from the BGA, the UK School Seismology Project and the British Geological Survey. In the hours following a significant earthquake, seismologists create PowerPoint slideshows detailing some of the event’s key facts. These slideshows describe the earthquake’s location, the region’s historical seismicity, its tectonic setting, the earthquake’s mechanism, and damage caused (if any). The slideshows also incorporate seismograms of the earthquake from the British Geological Survey’s network of instruments as well as from the School Seismometer network.

Teachable Moment PowerPoint slideshows are generated for events that fulfil the following criteria:

  • UK events: Magnitude 3.0 or greater for all events; Magnitude 2.4 or greater for newsworthy events.
  • European events: Magnitude 6.0 or greater for all events; Magnitude 5.7 or greater for damaging/newsworthy events.
  • Worldwide events: Magnitude 7.5 or greater for all events: Magnitude 6.5 or greater for damaging/newsworthy events.

Just one recent example of the teachable moments slides can be seen below. For more examples – visit the site

 Teachable Moments PowerPoints are also posted to the following websites:

For more information, please contact Stephen Hicks

Email: s.hicks@liverpool.ac.uk

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