Published on October 3, 2007
The Himalayas: The Himalayas The Himalayas are the tallest mountains in the world. They are located on the border of China and India. What do you think?: What do you think? How were the Himalayas formed? Why are the Himalayas the tallest mountains in the world? In this activity you will:: In this activity you will: Learn of the different ways that mountains form. Learn why the Himalayas are so tall. Plate Tectonics: Plate Tectonics The earth’s crust is split into several plates. These plates float on top of magma (a hot, thick, gel-like substance). When currents inside the earth move the magma, the plates move too. This movement sometimes causes mountains to form. Plates Eurasian Plate Indian Plate Just Checking: Just Checking The earth’s crust is split into __________. The hot, thick, gel-like substance found within the earth is called ___________. There are 4 types of mountains:: There are 4 types of mountains: Volcanic Mountains Erosional Mountains Fault-block Mountains Folded Mountains Volcanic Mountains: Volcanic Mountains Volcanoes form when magma within the earth pushes its way up through the crust. While pushing through the crust, the pressure causes the surrounding crust to rise, forming a mountain. Magma is deposited on the surface, sometimes creating a cone shaped mountain. Erosional Mountains: Erosional Mountains Erosional mountains form when wind or water wear down some materials on the earth’s surface, leaving other materials behind. Some materials erode faster than others. In the picture above, some of the rock material eroded much faster than the other material. The brown rock material left behind forms a mountain. Fault-block Mountains: Fault-block Mountains Fault-block mountains form when rock layers break and form a fault line. As the two blocks are being pushed together, the pressure forces one block up and the other block down. The block that is forced upward forms a mountain. Fault Folded Mountains: Folded Mountains Folded mountains form as two plates move toward each other. The plates push against each other causing the crust to fold or ripple This is like when you push 2 ends of a piece of paper together and the middle bends or folds. Just Checking: Just Checking Mountains that form when magma within the earth pushes its way up through the crust. __________ Mountains that form when wind or water wear down some materials on the earth’s surface, leaving other materials behind. ____________ Mountains that form when a plate cracks and forms a fault line. ______________ Mountains that form when plates push up against each other causing the crust to fold or ripple. ______________ Himalayas: Himalayas The Himalayas formed as a result of the Indian Plate and the Eurasian Plate moving toward one another. When two plates run into each other, they will do one of the following: If one plate is denser (heavier) than the other, it will sink below the other plate If both plates have the same density, they will continue to push against one another resulting in folded mountains. Same Density Denser plate The Himalayas: The Himalayas Both of these plates are the same density. As the plates keep pushing against each other, there is no place for the crust to go except bend upwards. The plates are still running into each other and the Himalayas are growing by more than 1 cm each year. Himalayas Indian Plate Eurasian Plate Just Checking: Just Checking The Himalayas are ___________ mountains. The Himalayas are the result of what two plates running into each other? ________________ and _______________ Neither of these two plates is sinking because they are both the same ___________. The Himalayas are still growing at a rate of ___________ each year.