Relative dating laboratory


The Law of Superposition, which states that in an undisturbed horizontal sequence of rocks, the oldest rock layers will be on the bottom, with successively younger rocks on top of these, helps geologists correlate rock layers around the world. This also means that fossils found in the lowest levels in a sequence of layered rocks represent the oldest record of life there. By matching partial sequences, the truly oldest layers with fossils can be worked out. By correlating fossils from various parts of the world, scientists are able to give relative ages to particular strata.

This is called relative dating. Relative dating tells scientists if a rock layer is "older" or "younger" than another. This would also mean that fossils found in the deepest layer of rocks in an area would represent the oldest forms of life in that particular rock formation. In reading earth history, these layers would be "read" from bottom to top or oldest to most recent.

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If certain fossils are typically found only in a particular rock unit and are found in many places worldwide, they may be useful as index or guide fossils in determining the age of undated strata. By using this information from rock formations in various parts of the world and correlating the studies, scientists have been able to establish the geologic time scale. This relative time scale divides the vast amount of earth history into various sections based on geological events sea encroachments, mountain-building, and depositional events , and notable biological events appearance, relative abundance, or extinction of certain life forms.

When you complete this activity, you will be able to: The first card in the sequence has "Card 1, Set A" in the lower left-hand corner and represents the bottom of the sequence.

WHO'S ON FIRST? RELATIVE DATING (Student Activity)

If the letters "T" and "C" represent fossils in the oldest rock layer, they are the oldest fossils, or the first fossils formed in the past for this sequence of rock layers. Now, look for a card that has either a "T" or "C" written on it. Since this card has a common letter with the first card, it must go on top of the "TC" card.

The fossils represented by the letters on this card are "younger" than the "T" or "C" fossils on the "TC" card which represents fossils in the oldest rock layer. Sequence the remaining cards by using the same process. When you finish, you should have a vertical stack of cards with the top card representing the youngest fossils of this rock sequence and the "TC" card at the bottom of the stack representing the oldest fossils. Starting with the top card, the letters should be in order from youngest to oldest.

INTRODUCTION

Deformation How do rocks respond to stress? Three-lobed body; burrowing, crawling, and swimming forms; extinct. Question assignment could be designed to go along with field trips. Volcanic materials identification using photographs by Richard Harwood of Black Hawk College — students can identify volcanic material photographs based on property choices, self-checking. The letters on the other cards have no significance and should not be used in sequencing. Squid-like animal with coiled, chambered shell; related to modern-day Nautilus.

Return to top Procedure Set B: Each card represents a particular rock layer with a collection of fossils that are found in that particular rock stratum. All of the fossils represented would be found in sedimentary rocks of marine origin. Figure 2-A gives some background information on the individual fossils.

The letters on the other cards have no significance to the sequencing procedure and should be ignored at this time. Once the parameters are selected, an animation plays to show the impact on rock layers. Within the site you will find links so that students can learn about structural geology as well as go on virtual field trips. Question assignment could be designed to go along with field trips. In addition, there is a virtual mapping project.

Relative Dating Lab

Geologic Time Interpreting geologic sections more info through Athro, Limited — students can test their knowledge of principles of geologic time through animations. Radioactive dating game through PhET. Understand how decay and half-life work to enable radiometric dating to work. Play a game that tests your ability to match the percentage of the dating element that remains to the age of the object. Relative dating laboratory by Richard Harwood of Black Hawk College — a laboratory on relative dating, multiple choice and self-checking. Radiometric dating laboratory by Richard Harwood of Black Hawk College — a laboratory on radiometric dating, multiple choice and self-checking.

Paleontology Online rock and fossil identification kit by University of Tennessee — provides photographs and descriptions of various rocks and fossils.

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Virtual museum of fossils by Valdosta State University. Topographic Maps Remote sensing laboratory by Richard Harwood of Black Hawk College — a laboratory on remote sensing, multiple choice and self-checking. Examples of landforms on topographic maps more info by Susan Slaymaker - website includes numerous example images that can be used to develop an online lab activity.

Topographic map examples more info which illustrate symbols commonly used on maps for cultural and natural features by Susan Slaymaker - website includes numerous example images that can be used to develop an online lab activity. Examples of topographic maps more info selected to illustrate common geologic processes, cultural features and topographic map symbols by Susan Slaymaker — website includes numerous example images that can be used to develop an online lab activity. Groundwater How does groundwater move through the ground?

Streams Virtual River This site may be offline. Students learn about river processes in these two activities: River Discharge and River Flooding.

Coasts How do storms affect coastlines? See topographic maps above for links to landform maps.

Relative Dating Re teach

Deserts What controls the motion of sand in sand dunes? Glaciers Glaciers simulation more info through PhET. Students can adjust mountain snowfall and temperature to see the glacier grow and shrink.

Use scientific tools to measure thickness, velocity and glacial budget. As you take the precarious trail, you notice clear differences in the rock layers. Some layers exhibit a particular color whereas others have unique fossils.

What can rock layers reveal to scientists? The study and comparison of exposed rock layers in various parts of the Earth led scientists in the early 19th century to propose that the rock layers could be correlated from place to place. Locally, physical characteristics of rocks can be compared and correlated.

On a larger scale, even between continents, fossil evidence can help in correlating rock layers.

The law of superposition, which states that in an undisturbed horizontal sequence of rocks, the oldest rocks will be on the bottom, with successively younger rocks on top of these, helps geologists correlate rocks around the world. This also means that fossils found in the lower levels of a sequence of layered rocks represent the oldest record of life.

Finding Lab Activities Online

By correlating fossils from various parts of the world, scientists are able to give relative ages to particular rock layers. This is called relative dating. Relative dating tells scientists if a particular rock layer is older or younger than another. This would also mean that fossils found in the deepest layer of rocks would represent the oldest forms of life.

If certain fossils are found only in particular layers of rock, they may be useful as index fossils in determining the age of unknown rock layers. By using the information from rock formations in various parts of the world and correlating the studies, scientists have been able to construct the geologic time scale. This time scale divides the vast amount of Earth history into sections based on geologic events such as mountain building and biologic events such as extinction.