Standard #: SC.7.E.6.1


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Describe the layers of the solid Earth, including the lithosphere, the hot convecting mantle, and the dense metallic liquid and solid cores.


General Information

Subject Area: Science
Grade: 7
Body of Knowledge: Earth and Space Science
Big Idea: Earth Structures - Over geologic time, internal and external sources of energy have continuously altered the features of Earth by means of both constructive and destructive forces. All life, including human civilization, is dependent on Earth's internal and external energy and material resources.
Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved
Assessed: Yes

Related Courses

Course Number1111 Course Title222
2002070: M/J Comprehensive Science 2 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2002080: M/J Comprehensive Science 2, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2001010: M/J Earth/Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2001020: M/J Earth/Space Science, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
7820016: Access M/J Comprehensive Science 2 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))
2002085: M/J Comprehensive Science 2 Accelerated Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))


Related Access Points

Access Point Number Access Point Title
SC.7.E.6.In.1 Identify that Earth has three layers (crust, mantle, and core) and describe the inside (core) as the hottest layer.
SC.7.E.6.Su.1 Recognize that the surface of Earth is called the crust.
SC.7.E.6.Pa.1 Recognize the ground as the outer surface (crust) of Earth.


Related Resources

Lesson Plans

Name Description
Layers of the Earth

Students will model and describe the layers of the Earth, including the crust, lithosphere, asthenosphere, mantle, outer core, and inner core through several hands-on activities. Students will model the different layers of Earth's interior and differentiate between benefits and limitations of the models.

The Layers of the Earth

Students will learn that the Earth is made of different layers with varying compositions and characteristics. Students will complete 4 activities in the course of this lesson. The lesson is opened with a bellringer activity paired with the four corners strategy. Students then discover the characteristics of each of Earth's layers through a hands-on lab with accompanying lab sheet. The following day, students will create a model of the Earth's layers out of play dough. The students will then be summatively assessed on their understanding using an exit slip.

Digging Deep Into The Earth

This lesson will help students conceptualize the location and enormity of the layers of the Earth. Students will be able to identify both the physical and chemical properties of each layer and be able to describe the functions or processes of each. This will lay the foundation for the study of plate tectonics and the rock cycle. This lesson plan is intended to take 2 - 3 class periods but may be modified to meet the needs of individual classrooms.

7th Grade Plate Tectonics

This lesson plan uses recent earthquakes as a learning opportunity. Students will learn what causes earthquakes to happen by going through a series of activities that allow them to explore the structure of Earth's interior, convection currents in the mantle, motion of tectonic plates, and the relationship between plate tectonics and earthquakes.

Original Student Tutorial

Name Description
Journey to the Center of the Earth

Learn about the layers of Earth's interior and identify each layer's physical characteristics with this interactive tutorial. This includes the crust, mantle, inner core, and outer core. 

Text Resources

Name Description
How Earth's Surface Morphs

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article focuses on how plate tectonics change the surface of Earth, and how new research is changing the way we think about geological behavior. The article goes in depth about two new ideas that are changing the way we think about the planet's layers and the processes that have shaped Earth over its long history.

Earth's Interior: A Look at the Inner Earth

This informational text is intended to support reading in the content area. The article covers the composition and properties of Earth's layers.

Virtual Manipulative

Name Description
Plate Tectonics

In this resource, you can explore how tectonic plates move on the surface of the Earth. The interactive simulation takes you through 0-50 millions years of movement.

Student Resources

Original Student Tutorial

Name Description
Journey to the Center of the Earth:

Learn about the layers of Earth's interior and identify each layer's physical characteristics with this interactive tutorial. This includes the crust, mantle, inner core, and outer core. 

Virtual Manipulative

Name Description
Plate Tectonics:

In this resource, you can explore how tectonic plates move on the surface of the Earth. The interactive simulation takes you through 0-50 millions years of movement.



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