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This lesson introduces students to a real-world application in which seismic waves are used to reveal the shallow structure of the Earth. Students will explore the concepts of reflected and refracted seismic waves and examine how refracted waves may be used to determine Earth structure. An activity in which the students investigate what is beneath the surface of a playground before the construction of a new school will reinforce these concepts. The lesson includes a slide presentation, student worksheets, and homework assignments. Teacher background materials, standards alignments, and references are also provided.
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