Earthquakes: How, Why—and What to Do

Hands-on activities, discussion, and book signing with Cary Sneider and Penny Noyce

Saturday, October 20, 2018 • 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Fisher Bay Observatory Gallery

Included with museum admission and for Daytime Members.

To mark both the 29th anniversary week of the 6.9-magnitude Loma Prieta earthquake (October 17, 1989) and Earth Science Week (October 14–21), join us for a morning of hands-on science activities and a lively discussion about earthquakes with science educator and author Cary Sneider (Jake and the Quake) and science education advocate Penny Noyce.  


Spaghetti Resonance
10:30 a.m.

Understand resonance, the phenomenon behind earthquakes, with a little help from spaghetti.

A Discussion with Cary Sneider and Penny Noyce
10:45 a.m.

Sneider and Noyce discuss Jake and the Quake, a tale of science exploration and adventure. Hear what inspired Sneider to write it after the Loma Prieta earthquake, how both Sneider and Noyce came to pursue careers in STEM education, and how to prepare for the Bay Area’s next big one. 

"Whose Fault Is It?"
11:30 a.m.

Join us for a whodunit game in which participants form the carriers, detectors, and secret source of earthquake waves, and in the process learn basic principles of seismology.

Book Signing and Observatory Tour
Noon–12:30 p.m.

Sneider will sign copies of Jake and the Quake, available for purchase. Exploratorium senior artist Susan Schwartzenberg will lead a tour of the Fisher Bay Observatory.

About the Presenters

Cary Sneider is a Visiting Scholar at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, and a consultant for charitable foundations that support education and the environment. Previously the Vice President for Educator Programs at Boston's Museum of Science and Director of Astronomy and Physics Programs at Berkeley's Lawrence Hall of Science, Sneider has written many books and articles for teachers. Jake and the Quake is his first published work of fiction.

Penny Noyce is a doctor, science education advocate, and children’s book author. She is the publisher and editor at Tumblehome, Inc., which publishes science-related fiction and nonfiction for young people. Author of 12 middle grade novels and science biographies, she currently serves as board chair of STEM Next, working to strengthen afterschool science.