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Earth Science for Kids

Ice Ages

What is an ice age?

An ice age is a period in Earth's history when the ice on the polar caps significantly expanded due to an overall lowering of the Earth's global temperatures. During these periods land in North America and Northern Europe were covered by giant ice fields and glaciers.



How do scientists know about ice ages?

Scientists have figured out when past ice ages likely occurred by studying the geology of the land. There are many geological features in Northern Europe and North America that can only be explained by the movements of giant glaciers. Scientists also study the chemicals in rocks and fossil evidence to determine when ice ages have occurred.

Are we living in an ice age?

Yes, you may be surprised to know that we are currently living in an ice age called the Quaternary ice age. The Earth is in a warmer stage of the ice age called an interglacial period.

Glacial and Interglacial Periods

There are periods within ice ages that scientists define as glacial and interglacial. Five Major Ice Ages

Over the course of millions of years, scientists believe that the Earth has experienced at least five major ice ages. What can cause an ice age?

The Earth is constantly undergoing changes. These changes can impact the global climate. Some of the changes that can influence an ice age include: Interesting Facts about Ice Ages Activities

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Earth Science Subjects

Geology
Composition of the Earth
Rocks
Minerals
Plate Tectonics
Erosion
Fossils
Glaciers
Soil Science
Mountains
Topography
Volcanoes
Earthquakes
The Water Cycle
Geology Glossary and Terms

Nutrient Cycles
Food Chain and Web
Carbon Cycle
Oxygen Cycle
Water Cycle
Nitrogen Cycle
Atmosphere and Weather
Atmosphere
Climate
Weather
Wind
Clouds
Dangerous Weather
Hurricanes
Tornadoes
Weather Forecasting
Seasons
Weather Glossary and Terms

World Biomes
Biomes and Ecosystems
Desert
Grasslands
Savanna
Tundra
Tropical Rainforest
Temperate Forest
Taiga Forest
Marine
Freshwater
Coral Reef
Environmental Issues
Environment
Land Pollution
Air Pollution
Water Pollution
Ozone Layer
Recycling
Global Warming

Renewable Energy Sources
Renewable Energy
Biomass Energy
Geothermal Energy
Hydropower
Solar Power
Wave and Tidal Energy
Wind Power

Other
Ocean Waves and Currents
Ocean Tides
Tsunamis
Ice Age
Forest Fires
Phases of the Moon


Science >> Earth Science for Kids





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