Start Radioactive dating activity high school

Radioactive dating activity high school

If we know from radiometric dating that an animal only existed for a particular period of a few million years, we know that whenever we see that animal in a rock face, that part of the rock must have that particular age.

This is a slide and worksheet for radioactive dating and half life activity.

The Slides are to be shown at the front and then each item is shown in turn and the pupils use their graphs to calculate the age of each item from the percentage of carbon found in them. take longer than you think, but keeps them engaged and there're questions to be answered in their books also.

Ammonites are a great example of an especially useful index fossil.

Ammonites changed over time, so that ones from a few million years apart are never quite the same. Other examples of good index fossils include tropites, which existed only from 230 to 208 million years ago, and trilobites, which are useful in the same way as ammonites -- due to the large number of variations over time, even though they existed for a full 270 million years.

As the students work on the simulation they are visualizing how stability and change in natural or designed systems can be constructed by examining the changes over time (CCC Stability and Change), as well as analyzing and interpreting data (SP4). To close this lesson I ask that students write, on Edmodo, what was the most interesting thing they learned in today's lesson.

The review of this responses allows me to gauge not only how the lesson went, but also how the simulation engage/did not engage the students.

But that probably sounds a bit complex, so let's start with some basics.

Everything in the universe is made of various elements, such as carbon, oxygen, iron and magnesium. Some of those elements are stable, and some are radioactive (unstable).

The idea of radioactive decay and half lives, a type of absolute dating, is shown through an activity using M&M's candy and graph paper. Sequencing Time, University of California, Berkeley. This 5-12-grade activity lets students place parts of their own life story into a time line so that they can better understand how geologic time is reconstructed by scientists.

Who's on First, University of California, Berkeley. This website is a book chapter about geologic time. This online version of their informative booklet contains short, content explanations about relative time, major geologic time divisions, index fossils for use in age dating, radiometric dating and the age of the earth.

The amount that decays into other elements can be predicted; the more years pass, the more will be broken down.