Targeting California state standards for earth science and geoscience, this interactive game utilizes technology to teach players about plate tectonics. Players will challenge their creative problem solving skills through sophisticated game play and have their learning reinforced through this multi-sensory teaching tool. This module is designed to bring misconceptions about traditionally challenging geoscience concepts to the surface, and includes opportunities for players to correct their understanding through experience and interaction. GeoMoto is an interactive learning experience where players create geographic features by pulling, smashing, and grinding tectonic plates together. Players navigate around a planet devoid of geographic features with the express purpose of populating the planet with features of their own creation. The Initial challenges focus on exposure to the vocabulary surrounding plate tectonics, while later levels require specific observations about the results of different plate collisions. The game takes the player through a natural level progression that will motivate the player to learn more about geology.

Geomoto from GameDesk on Vimeo.


Observe, Extrapolate, and Create

    • GeoMoto encourages you to recognize patterns as clues to relationships. Use information to make hypotheses, test theories, and revise according to results.
    • Use reverse engineering techniques to understand geological models, studying the current state and moving backwards to replicate the original form.
    • Witness how science and technology work together in making discoveries.
    •  Use the sonar and fossil tools to unveil clues that can lead to scientific breakthroughs.
    • Use all of the techniques available to create the landscapes of your world!

Learning through Action

  • Interactive animation based learning allows you to physically move plate tectonics and observe the resulting features on the planet’s surface using the touchscreen of a tablet.
  • Linking tactile actions to learning objectives—resulting in greater understanding and retention of complex material.
  • Scaling difficulty introduces new concepts fluidly and later tests understanding through application.
  • Manipulate plates to cause convergent, divergent, and transform plate boundaries and witness resulting rift valleys, subduction zones, volcanoes and more.


Next Generation Science Standards

MS-ESS2: Earth Systems

MS-ESS2-2. Construct an explanation based on evidence for how geoscience processes have changed Earth’s surface at varying time and spatial scales.

MS-ESS2-3. Analyze and interpret data on the distribution of fossils and rocks, continental shapes, and seafloor structures to provide evidence of the past plate motions.

MS-ESS3 Earth and Human Activity

MS-ESS3-2. Analyze and interpret data on natural hazards to forecast future catastrophic events and inform the development of technologies to mitigate their effects.

HS-ESS2: Earth Systems

HS-ESS2-1. Develop a model to illustrate how Earth’s internal and surface processes operate at different spatial and temporal scales to form continental and ocean-floor features.