Students study earthquakes in the classroom


Todd Faulkner & Chad Darnall


Paducah, KY - We've certainly seen a fair share of earthquakes lately. In Haiti, in Chile, in Missouri just a few days ago and Thursday morning an earthquake hit Taiwan.

High school students at Paducah Tilghman are studying those earthquakes closely, and for good reason. We sit right on the New Madrid fault zone.

The Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, or IRIS program, is working to get students interested in science by studying earthquake activity. Paducah Tilghman High School is the only school in Kentucky involved in the program (click here).  

The goal is to apply science by finding it out in the world, in real life. In this case, students at the Home of the Tornado are learning about this different type of natural disaster, earthquakes.

Teachers Nancy Mullenax and Alan Tucker wrote a grant for a seismograph from IRIS to be on permanent loan at the school. The two were awarded a seismograph to monitor seismic activity and enrolled in the program. They use the information provided by the machine in classes to help increase knowledge and awareness of earthquakes.