Friday, January 6, 2012

DIY: Plate Tectonics Cards

It's Volcano Day...

So, if you are anything like us sisters, you love all things paper--especially if they have to do with some old school correspondence (letter writing and such). But if you are specifically like me, you find that you just don't follow through, for instance my Christmas/New Years cards just went in the mail today. So when I send out something I try to actually put a little love, blood, and time into it...

This is a variation of a project I have had in mind for a while. I just realized one day that I had forgotten most of what I knew about Plate Tectonics, and I had to take action. Stay tuned for the original idea from which this morphed...

To make this project all you need is card stock, colored pencils (or color application method of choice) and a pair of scissors. Also you will need to have at least a vague interest in rediscovering the wonders of plate tectonics.

I wanted these cards to be extra fun so I decided to cut basic silhouettes on the top. You don't have to do this but be warned your cards may not be as fun as mine.

Then I used my handy colored pencils to color it in, continue cutting and coloring each card to taste.

Oceanic Crust.

As this is the second take on this post I wanted to use the opportunity to represent a more robust array of tectonic boundaries and different subduction zones. I don't have a Transform boundary because that's the one I live on and I don't want to acknowledge it. Seems rational, right?

Oceanic-Oceanic Convergent boundary (subduction

Now it's just an island.

Divergent boundary

Oceanic-Continental Convergence boundary (Subduction zone)

Continental-Continental Convergence boundary (Subduction zone)

Continental-Continental Convergence boundary (Collision)

Happy together!

Now I just need to do some corresponding!


  1. No. WAY. This idea makes my crafty, geologic loving heart go pitter-patter!!

  2. Now, that's the kind of thing we like to hear!

  3. LOVE this idea. However, the geology teacher in me needs to point out a slight error. Crust is not above the lithosphere; rather, it is a part of the lithosphere. Lithosphere consists of crust (either oceanic or continental) and upper mantle. A tectonic plate is a piece of lithosphere that rides on the asthenosphere. Thanks for sharing a great idea!

  4. Thanks Val and thanks for the tip. I'm sure Monika will take this into consideration for her next round of geologic greeting cards!

  5. This is so neat. It is a great way to explain converging plate boundaries to my classmates. This is the one thing I needed to think of or find to complete my science project!!:)

    1. That's great, Nikos! Hope your science project is sooo amazing.

  6. I would love to make these with my class. Not crafty or you have a pattern my kido's can trace?


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