This passage describes what happens during a tsunami and the damage that they can do.

Lexile Level: 580L

Categories: Science & Technology Animals & Nature

A tsunami is a great, big, ocean wave. It can move very fast and grow to be very tall. A tsunami can race across the ocean at 500 miles per hour. Some tsunamis grow to be 100 feet tall. A tsunami is very destructive. A big tsunami can destroy houses and towns. Most tsunamis are created by earthquakes. The earthquake happens out in the middle of the ocean. The ground under the ocean shakes and creates the big wave. It is similar to a person dropping a rock in a pond. The rock makes the water splash. Tsunamis are not very big in deep water. Once they reach land, then they begin to grow. A tsunami can suck in water as it gets closer to land. It pulls in water from the beach. This makes the tsunami get bigger and stronger. Tsunami means "great harbor wave" in Japanese.

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