Glaciers Virtual Lab
How do Glaciers shape the Land?
Background Information: ~ Glaciers are large masses of snow and ice that move slowly downhill due to its weight. Glaciers can erode the land they pass over, carrying eroded material along and depositing it to form new landforms. In addition to glacier deposition, glacier erosion changes large areas of Earth. It results when glaciers move over land, forcefully pushing loose materials out of their path.
There are two main types of glaciers, continental glaciers and valley glaciers. Both types of glaciers are capable of altering the physical landscape by erosion and deposition, but each type has a different effect on the land. Continental glaciers are huge masses of snow and ice. They level the land and cover most of the terrain they travel across. Valley glaciers are smaller and cover less area. Valley glaciers have a carving effect on the land. Valley glaciers flow down mountain slopes and through valleys previously occupied by streams.
Objective ~ Identify landforms produced by valley glaciers and by continental glaciers.
Go to this website ~ Glacier Virtual Lab
- Examine landforms made by continental glaciers and valley glaciers by clicking the corresponding file tab. Now, click the labels on the diagram to obtain information about each landform.
- Examine the photograph taken from Site 1, you will then click the clue button to obtain information about the landform(s) circled on the photograph.
- Using the landform diagrams on the file cards, determine what type of landform is shown in the photograph.
- Click the landform arrow and select the landform shown in the photograph.
- Click the Check button. If the landform you selected is not the landform shown in the photograph, re-examine the diagrams on the file cards and try again.
Complete the table below by clicking on the title in your virtual lab, and describing the features caused by glaciers.Feature / Is it Caused by Valley or Continental Glaciers?
Use (V) for Valley
Use (C) for Continental / Descriptions ~
Please use this section to describe each feature in detail
U – shaped Valleys
Task 2- Examine the photographs taken from each site.
Using the landform diagrams to determine the type of landform that is shown in the photograph. You may use the check button to ensure you are correct.Location / Feature
Site 1 -
Site 2 -
Site 3 -
Site 4 -
Site 5 -
Site 6 -
Task 3- Complete the questions below.
1. How are continental glaciers different from valley glaciers? List 2 differences.
2. How is a glacier similar to a river?
3. What kind of landforms would indicate the prior existence of a valley glacier and a
continental glacier. Explain both
4. A glacier is estimated to be moving forward at 5 meters per day. Calculate how long the ice will take to reach a road and campground located 0.5 kilometers from the front of the advancing glacier. (Hint: 1 km= 1,000 m) Show your work.