Hawaii and Indonesia – Activity and Information for Students

Part I: Overarching Question: What is the relationship between the motion of the Pacific plate and that of the Hawaiian hot spot over the last 70 million years?

See also: Teaching About Volcanoes in a Plate Tectonic Context

Begin by examining a map of Hawaii that shows the entire volcanic chain including the Emperor Seamounts ( is one nice example).

Google Earth Exercise: Mountains, Their Environments, and Human Activity

Students are directed to open specific pre-existing layers under "Global Awareness" in Google Earth - Appalachian Mountaintop Removal, and UNEP: Atlas of Our Changing Environment.  No additional Google Earth files are required, as students can complete the exercise using the available Layers in the Google Earth program (available as a free download from