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This lesson uses interactive diagrams of ground shaking from the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake to teach students about the mechanics involved in the rupture of a fault and the propagation of seismic waves as an earthquake progresses. They will understand that earthquakes begin at a point; that a long section of a fault can rupture during an earthquake; that the earth shakes in all different directions and modes; and that the intensity of shaking depends on the amount of energy released by the earthquake, distance from the fault, and the type of soil or rock beneath the surface. Links are provided to additional lesson plans and information, and to the complete movie of shaking intensity from which the diagrams were made.
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