Just drop the word “supervolcano” at the beginning of a lesson and – wow! – are the students energized and inquisitive. Many of them have heard of supervolcanoes, some may have seen video and others may even connect them to Yellowstone National Park in the United States. But some don’t have a clue what you’re talking about, but are galvanized by what they hear.
I’ve just added a sub-section to the Volcanoes page of GeoKnow.net on Supervolcanoes. I’ve included resources from TedEd, National Geographic, USGS and BBC GCSE Bitesize – all great and interactive. I’ve also added one of the shorter videos I’ve found – many are almost an hour long which I find too long for classroom use. This one is 28 minutes and it’s not just about Yellowstone, but talks about Tambora and even the Deccan and Siberian Traps. The TedEd vid, as usual, is short and to the point.
So, if you have the time (or even if you don’t), this is a great set of resources that will get your students thinking. Do stress, though, that the chance of this happening in even the next thousand years is extremely slim. We don’t want to create unnecessary anxiety!