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Volcanoes…Live: Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park

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Students will demonstrate and understand the effects of volcanic eruptions on a climate, resources, and economy.

Coin Type(s)

  • Quarter

Coin Program(s)

  • America The Beautiful Quarters


Students will demonstrate and understand the effects of volcanic eruptions on a climate, resources, and economy.

Major Subject Area Connections

  • Science
  • Social Studies


  • Ninth grade
  • Tenth grade
  • Eleventh grade
  • Twelfth grade

Class Time

Sessions: Three
Session Length: 45-60 minutes
Total Length: 121-150 minutes


  • Whole group
  • Small groups
  • Individual work

Terms and Concepts

  • Volcano
  • Eruption
  • Climate
  • Natural resources
  • Economy.


  • Video of the most recent Kilauea eruption
  • Internet
  • Multimedia tools


Worksheets and Files

Lesson plan, worksheet(s), and rubric (if any) at

  1. Display and examine the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park Quarter design featuring the eruption of the Kilauea Volcano. Locate this national site on a class map. As background information, explain to the students that the United States Mint began to issue the quarters in the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program in 2010. By the time the program ends in 2021, there will be a total of 56 designs on the back of the coin. Each design will focus on a different national site—one from each state, territory, and the District of Columbia.
  2. Show a video of the most recent Kilauea eruption. Segue into a discussion of the geological history of the park and the effects of volcanoes on a population.
  3. Assign groups of students to research three specific areas: the effects of volcanoes on climate, their effects on tourism, and their positive effects on the resources of the environment. Have them use the “Volcanoes...Live” worksheet to note their assignment and record their findings.
  4. Have the student groups report back to the class as news reporters regarding their findings. Powerpoint slides or pictures and charts should be included.
There are no modification options for this lesson plan.
  • Take anecdotal notes about the students’ participation in class discussions.
  • Evaluate the students’ ability to collaborate on their group project.
  • Evaluate the students’ essays on their research and their presentation in class.

This lesson plan is not associated with any Common Core Standards.

Discipline: Science
Domain: 9-12 Content Standards
Cluster: Earth and Space Science
Grade(s): Grades 9–12

  • Energy in the Earth system
  • Geochemical cycles
  • Origin and evolution of the Earth system
  • Origin and evolution of the universe