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  • In this activity, students make a simple model of a cinder cone by pouring a granular material such as fine dry sand, pea-size gravel or rice bubbles into a conical pile and measuring its slope. This is then related to the shape and formation of cinder cone volcanoes.

    By the end of this activity, students should be able to:

    • describe the shape of a pile of granular material poured from above
    • relate the shape of their model cinder cone to that of real cinder cones
    • explain the concept of ‘angle of repose’
    • describe the formation of cinder cones.

    Download the Word file (see link below) for:

    • introduction/background notes
    • instructions on what you need and what to do
    • ideas for extending your students.
      Published 9 April 2010 Referencing Hub articles
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