The Geology Book, Answer Key for All Lessons

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These lessons are geared for middle-school students. Each lesson contains a series of questions to answer that pertain to the reading assignment.


The Geology Book

The Geology Book

by Dr. John D. Morris

Whether jutting skyward, or languishing in the murky depths of the deep, rocks and sediments hold our little planet together. Dr John Morris takes the reader on a tour of the Earth’s crust, pointing out both the natural beauty and the scientific evidences for creation. Well illustrated, this book presents an accurate view of Earth’s natural history.

Lesson 1

  1. Operational science is the science that deals with repeatable, observable experiments in the present. Origins science deals with reconstructing events that have happened in the past. (See our Science section for information.)
  2. Uniformity (the present is the key to the past) and catastrophe (rapid, highly energetic events operated over short periods of time and did much geologic work rapidly)
  3. In the Bible
  4. Day 1: Earth, space, time, light; Day 2: Atmosphere; Day 3: dry land, plants; Day 4: sun, moon, stars, planets; Day 5: sea and flying creatures; Day 6: land animals, people
  5. Death, disease, suffering, catastrophes, earthquakes, hurricanes
  6. Sin can be defined as rebellion against God
  7. Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto
  8. Magnetic field shields the earth from harmful radiation from the sun; earth is perfect distance from the sun; atmosphere provides air for breathing; earth has liquid water, which is necessary for life; moon’s gravity causes tides, which helps prevent the ocean water from becoming stagnant (accept other reasonable answers)
  9. Crust, mantle, outer core, inner core
  10. Continental crust (composed of granitic rock covered by sedimentary rock); oceanic crust (composed primarily of basaltic rock)
  11. Provides the air we breath and protects us from harmful cosmic radiation

Lesson 2

  1. Type Category Composition Formation Found
    Granite Igneous Quartz and feldspar with mica and hornblende Formed when molten rock is cooled Mountains, upper mantle
    Rhyolite Igneous Quartz and feldspar with mica and hornblende Formed when molten rock erupts on land and solidifies Land
    Obsidian Igneous Quartz and feldspar with mica and hornblende Formed by the rapid cooling of lava as it flows in the surface of the ground Land
    Pumice Igneous Quartz and feldspar with mica and hornblende Formed by eruptions on land—the cooling process forms air pockets in the rock Land
    Basalt Igneous Pyroxene, plagioclase feldspar Solidified molten lava under water and on land Oceanic crust, land
    Shale Clastic Sedimentary Cemented particles of clay (and minor silt) Formed from previously existing rocks that were eroded, transported and redeposited elsewhere Mountains, land
    Sandstone Clastic Sedimentary Quartz sand, particles big enough to be seen Formed from previously existing rocks that were eroded, transported and redeposited elsewhere Mountains, land
    Conglomerate Clastic Sedimentary Pebble-size to boulder-size grains mixed with smaller sand or clay particles Formed from previously existing rocks that were eroded, transported and redeposited elsewhere Mountains, land
    Limestone Organic chemical sedimentary Calcium carbonate from shells of sea creatures, reef fragments or limey secretions of sea creatures Formed when water can no longer keep various chemicals dissolved within it Sea floors, land
    Diatomaceous earth Organic chemical sedimentary Collection of shells from diatoms or radiolarians and certain algae Formed when water can no longer keep various chemicals dissolved within it Land
    Coal Organic chemical sedimentary Buried plant material Formed when water can no longer keep various chemicals dissolved in it Land
    Limestone Inorganic chemical sedimentary Calcium carbonate derived from inorganic sources Formed when water can no longer keep various chemicals dissolved in it Caves, mineral springs, stalactites, stalagmites
    Dolomite Inorganic chemical sedimentary Calcium carbonate with magnesium atoms Formed when water can no longer keep various chemicals dissolved in it Land
    Evaporites Inorganic chemical sedimentary The remains of evaporated seawater Some were formed when a huge volume of mineral-laden water came up through the ocean floor basalts and released its dissolved content when it hit the cold ocean waters Land
    Slate Metamorphic Shale Shale subjected to heat and pressure Land
    Schist Metamorphic Shale Slate that continues to undergo heat and pressure Land
    Gneiss Metamorphic Alternating bands of different minerals from other sedimentary or igneous rocks Formed from other sedimentary or igneous rocks that have been subjected to heat and pressure Land
    Quartzite Metamorphic Quartz sandstone Quartz sandstone that has been subjected to change Land
    Marble Metamorphic Limestone Heat and pressure applied to limestone Land

Lesson 3

  1. Low-lying: formed when moving water deposits sediment a few hundred feet above or below sea level; alluvial plain: sediments deposited when water slows down; coastal plain: flat areas upriver or uphill from an alluvial plain—may have been uplifted or sea level dropped since deposition; lake plains: deposits in a lake bed that are later exposed; glacial plains: sediments deposited by ice melt on flat areas eroded by ice; lava plains: hardened leveled lava; offshore deposits: sediments distributed offshore by strong currents
  2. Fault: rock is broken and shoved up (Colorado Plateau); warped: regional squeezing or slow uplift (Appalachian mountains); lava: hardened lava plains that may have been uplifted or hardened at the current level (Columbia River basalts)
  3. Folded: layers of sediments that have been crumpled by pressures from the side (Alps, Himalayas, Appalachians, Rocky Mountains); Domed: sediments pushed up from below (Black Hills of South Dakota); fault block: one area of sediments are pushed up (Grand Teton Mountains); volcanic: molten lavas pushed out to the surface of the earth (Hawaii’s volcanic islands, Mount Rainier, Mount St. Helens, Mount Ararat)
  4. Canyons: streams and rivers carve out areas in rocks; continental shield: the exposed granite core of continents due to glacial flow scraping off the overlying sedimentary rock

Lesson 4

  1. Rain; Ice; Plants and animals; chemicals; ocean waves
  2. Allow students to do their own research.
  3. Cavitation occurs when tiny bubbles in moving water explode inwardly; plucking is where rocks are picked up by moving water; kolk is like an under-water tornado that breaks up rock.
  4. Slowing water from a river into a larger body of water deposits its sediments onto the sea floor
  5. First, an event such as an earthquake starts a mud flow underwater. Next the mud flow spreads out. Eventually the mud flow hardens into a layer of rock.
  6. An underwater earthquake or volcanic eruption causes a shock wave of energy to race through the water. As the wave nears the shoreline, it becomes a wall of water which slams into the shoreline.

Lesson 5

  1. Silica
  2. See page 37.
  3. That the organism be buried rapidly, protected from scavengers and from decomposition by bacteria and chemicals
  4. Hard parts are preserved; replacement by other minerals; cast or mold are all that remains; petrification; cabonization; preservation of soft parts; frozen animals; animal tracks and worm burrows; coprolites; gastroliths
  5. See page 41.

Lesson 6

  1. Some volcanoes erupt by just spilling lava out from their top; others explode out of their top
  2. See pages 44, 45.
  3. Whether it is soft or brittle, how deep it is buried
  4. Allow students to respond.

Lesson 7

  1. Heat and pressure recrystallizing the minerals in rock into new mineral combinations. Some believe it happened over long periods of time, others believe it happened over short periods of time.
  2. Radioactive; uranium
  3. The fossil must have once been living and must still contain carbon.
  4. The daughter isotope is formed from the decay of the parent isotope.
  5. Rate of decay has not changed; system has been closed from the beginning; there was no daughter material present in the beginning

Lesson 8

  1. Technically, measuring the chemicals doesn’t tell us anything about the age of the earth—it just tells us how much of each chemical is present in today’s oceans. However, we can attempt to figure out how old the oceans are by assuming various things. Some studies indicate that the oceans can’t be older than 62 millions years.
  2. Again, the actual measuring doesn’t tell us anything about the age of the earth. It’s only when we begin assuming things about the past that we try to figure out how old the continents are based on present-day measurements—that they can’t be older than 15 million years.
  3. See above answers—that the atmosphere can’t be older than 2 million years.
  4. Measuring the rate of decline in the magnetic field simply tells us how much it has declined within the measured time period. However, we can extrapolate back and time and suggest that 10,000 years ago the magnetic field would have been too strong for life to exist.
  5. A majority of methods used to age-date the earth yield ages far less than the acclaimed billions of years.

Lesson 9

  1. Creation, the Fall, Flood, Ice Age
  2. Formed the cores of the continents, some erosion and deposition probably happened
  3. (no answer required)
  4. (no answer required)
  5. Because God withdrew some of His sustaining power at the time of the Fall, this has allowed for various “natural” disasters to happen which affect the geology—earthquakes, floods, etc. Everything is wearing down and deteriorating.
  6. God sent the Flood as a judgment on the wickedness of mankind. The Flood formed many of the rock and fossil layers. See pages 63–66 for more details.
  7. The top of Mount Everest was once underwater and was later pushed up after the Flood waters receeded.
  8. The warm oceans waters rapidly evaporated and condensed over the colder continents, causing a buildup of ice and snow. See page 67 for more detailed information.
  9. (no answer required)
  10. Many of the mammoths were probably killed when wind-blown sediments covered them at the end of the Ice Age.

Lesson 10

  1. For the answers to the questions in this chapter, see the text.


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