Thomas Jolyffe Primary School

Thomas Jolyffe Primary School


Lesson 6- What is a tsunami and how do earthquakes play a part?


For today's lesson, there are a few videos to watch which will explain exactly how earthquakes are not only dangerous on land, but at sea, too. An underwater earthquake can trigger huge tsunamis which can be very dangerous and destructive. Watch these videos, before having a go at one of the tasks below. 

How Earthquakes Trigger Tsunamis - Bang Goes The Theory, Preview - BBC One

We would like you to experiment with water today. Here are some tasks you could complete:


  • Using a bowl of water/water in the sink or bath, put your hand or an object in the water and watch how the water is displaced (it has to move out of the way to make room for the object). Do the water levels go up or down? Experiment with a bigger and a smaller object.


  • Place some waterproof objects (or stones) at one end of your water holder so that they look like the land. Use a flat piece of plastic or cardboard to make waves in the water- can you feel the push and pull forces from the water? Can you make a mini tsunami?


  • Pretend your hands are two tectonic plates and clap them underwater. What happens? Do you think the same happens when tectonic plates really collide? Why do you think that?


  • Design a poster to show what happens when a tsunami occurs.


  • Make a Minecraft tsunami.


If you are experimenting with water, you may want to wait until you have a bath so that you are not wasting water.


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