North-Central Section - 42nd Annual Meeting (24–25 April 2008)

Paper No. 10
Presentation Time: 11:20 AM


POSNER, Esther S., Grand Rapids, MI 49503,

I have a decade of experience as a performance poet and am now an undergraduate geology student. I will orally present my 10-minute memorized poem, "Tectonic Petrameter," which together with a slide show illustrates the voyage through Earth history. I propose that using poems such as "Tectonic Petrameter" and other creative art forms may be an avenue for breaking down barriers related to teaching students about Earth's long and complex history.

"Tectonic Petrameter" is an illustrated spoken-word poem which leads its listeners on an excitingly educational journey through geologic time. "The Archean came next and it was a blast. Tectonic plates were smaller and they moved pretty fast. In an enthusiastic flash of ash, volcanic islands smashed together." The use of rhyme and rhythm presents a different approach to teaching Earth history which makes learning fun and hilarious while clearly describing important concepts in geology and events in Earth history. "Now it's time to get down with the Coal Swamp Stomp! Tap your feet to the beat of the formation of peat like a plant plantation soaking up the bright heat." Print copies and CD recordings of "Tectonic Petrameter" will be distributed after the presentation to interested parties for educational purposes.