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Science - The Earth’s Structure Vocabulary

This Spanish Easy Review vocabulary quiz takes a look at the Earth's structure. Okay, so you are probably thinking that you already have a science class and now this makes two. You can relax on that front because what this quiz will focus on is the Spanish vocabulary of science words. It will also complement your normal science class on learning about the Earth’s structure. As you may recall, the Earth has six layers. Those layers include the inner core, outer core, lower mantle, upper mantle, lithosphere and crust.

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Now let’s look at the Spanish words for each of these layers, as well as a few other words that are associated with the Earth.

English Spanish Pronounced (Phonetically) As
earth / land (la) tierra tē-ě-rră (roll the double 'r' with your tongue)
structure (la) estructura ě-strŭc-tour-ă
crust (la) corteza cŏt-tāy-ză
core (el) núcleo new-clāy-ō
mantle (el) manto măn-tō
inner interior ēn-tear-ē-ŏr
outer exterior ěx- tear-ē-ŏr
upper superior sŭ-pāy-rē-ŏr
lithosphere (la) litósfera lē-tō-sfear-ă
rock (la) roca rō-că
gas (el) gas găs
earthquake (el) terremoto tear-rāy-mō-tō
magma (el) magma măg-mă
metal (el) metal mě-tăl
heavy (el/la) pesado/a pāy-să-dō / pāy-să-dă
plate (el) plato plă-tō
liquid (el/la) líquido/a lē-qwē-dō / lē-qwē-dă
solid (el/la) sólido/a sō-lē-dō / sō-lē-dă
atmosphere (la) atmósfera ăt-mō- sfear-ă
oxygen (el) oxígeno ox-ē-hěn-ō (Notice that the 'g' has an 'h' sound.)

Many of the words listed above will be used together. In Spanish the adjective will come after the noun rather than before it as it is done in English. For example, let’s look at some of these words when linked together in Spanish.

  • inner core = núcleo interior
  • outer core = núcleo exterior
  • heavy metal = metal pesado

One other thing to note here. When you see the word tierra, with a small 't' it means the ground such as 'the earth beneath my feet'. When it is capitalized as Tierra and more often seen as la Tierra, then it refers to the planet. It will always be capitalized when it means the planet.

After studying these new Spanish words, it will be time to move onto the quiz. Some of the quiz questions will mirror those that are contained in the Grade 6 Science Earth’s Structure quiz, although the answers might not be in the same order. If you have not already taken the Earth’s Structure quiz, you might want to look at it first as it will help you with this quiz. When you believe you are ready, begin the quiz!

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  1. Which of the following best describes the Earth’s mantle?
    The Earth’s mantle contains rocks and lava or liquid. It does not contain metal so the first and second answers can be eliminated. The last answer is solid rock so it is not complete. The third answer, however, reads liquid and solid rock. Note the order of the words. It’s literal translation is rock [of] liquid and solid. This is because in Spanish the adjectives often are placed after the noun which, in this case is rock.
  2. The lithosphere layer contains part of ____.
    The lithosphere layer is located just below the Earth’s crust. It contains part of the crust and connects the crust to the upper mantle. This is translated in Spanish as la corteza y el manto superior (the crust and upper mantle). Again, notice that the adjective upper is placed after the noun mantle.
  3. This layer of the Earth creates the Earth’s magnetic field.
    Iron is an important metal needed to create a magnetic field and the Earth’s core is made up mostly of iron. Therefore, it is the core that creates the Earth’s magnetic field i.e. núcleo in Spanish.
  4. Which of the Earth’s layers is the thinnest layer?
    The top layer of the Earth is the thinnest. The top layer is also known as the Earth’s crust or corteza in Spanish.
  5. What is the thick, hot, rocky layer around the outer core called?
    The layer of the Earth that contains thick, hot rock around the outer core is called the mantle or 'manto' in Spanish.
  6. Earth in Spanish is ____.
    The Spanish word for Earth is tierra.
  7. When the Earth’s crust shakes, it means that these are moving.
    When the Earth’s crust shakes, it means that the Earth’s plates are moving. The Spanish word for plates is platos.
  8. When the Earth’s plates move it causes this to happen.
    When the Earth’s plates move it causes an earthquake to happen. The Spanish word for earthquake is terremoto.
  9. The Earth’s atmosphere is a layer of ____ that surrounds the Earth.
    The Earth’s atmosphere is a layer of gases that surrounds the Earth. Gases in Spanish is gases. It is the same so this one is pretty easy to remember.
  10. This quiz is about Earth's ____.
    This quiz is about Earth’s structure. The Spanish word for structure is estructura.

Author: Christine G. Broome

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