Teaching about Earth's history is a challenge for all teachers. Time factors of millions and billions of years is difficult even for adults to comprehend. However, "relative" dating or time can be an easy concept for students to learn. Once they are able to manipulate the cards into the correct sequence, they are asked to do a similar sequencing activity using fossil pictures printed on "rock layer" cards. Sequencing the rock layers will show students how paleontologists use fossils to give relative dates to rock strata. Once students begin to grasp "relative" dating, they can extend their knowledge of geologic time by exploring radiometric dating and developing a timeline of Earth's history.
Specific rock formations are indicative of a particular type of environment existing when the rock was being formed. For example, most limestones represent marine environments, whereas, sandstones with ripple marks might indicate a shoreline habitat or a riverbed. Return to top The study and comparison of exposed rock layers or strata 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 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. 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 eventsand notable biological events appearance, relative abundance, or extinction of certain life forms.
Objectives: When you complete this activity, you will be able to: 1 sequence information using items which overlap specific sets; 2 relate sequencing to the Law of Superposition; and 3 show how fossils can be used to give relative dates to rock layers.
Materials: two sets of sequence cards in random order set A : nonsense syllables; set B : sketches of fossilspencil, paper Procedure Set A: 1 Spread the cards with the nonsense syllables on the table and determine the correct sequence of the eight cards by comparing letters that are common to individual cards and, therefore, overlap. The first card in the sequence has "Card 1, Set A" in the lower left-hand corner and represents the bottom of the sequence.
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.
Students complete a multi-part lab on figuring out how to correlate rock layers using index fossils and relative dating techniques. Earth and Space Science. fossil record (Evolution) Evaluate the evidence supporting claims that changes in environmental conditions may result in: (1) increases in the number of individuals of some species, (2) the Author: Kane Koller. certain fossils that are used to help find the relative age of rock layers To be an index fossil, the following must be true: an organisms must have lived only during a short part of Earth's history, many fossils of the organism must be found in rock layers, the fossil must be found over a wide are of Earth, the organism must be unique. 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.
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. Interpretation Questions: 1 After you have arranged the cards in order, write your sequence of letters using each letter only once on a separate piece of paper.
Starting with the top card, the letters should be in order from youngest to oldest.
Return to top Procedure Set B: 1 Carefully examine the second set of cards which have sketches of fossils on them. Already a member? Log In. Did you know We have over college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1, colleges and universities.
Relative Dating with Fossils: Index Fossils as Indicators of Time
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Index fossils and relative dating lab answers
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WHO'S ON FIRST? RELATIVE DATING (Student Activity)
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Question: Lab 8: Geologic Time (part 2): Relative & Absolute Dating NAME: Section: Fossil Succession The Principle Of Faunal/Fossil Succession Began With William Smith, An English Geologist. He Stated That The Fossils Were Arranged In A Consistent And Reliable Order In The Sedimentary Rocks That Can Be Identified Around The World. Jun 05, Earth science relative dating worksheet mr leigh 08 22 earth science relative dating worksheet mr leigh 08 22 8 1 relative dating earth science lab relative dating 1 s an extension lab 08 geological. Post navigation. How Many Times Bigger Than Mercury Is Earth. Aka Down To Earth. I can determine the best videos and index fossils, a visual that follow all of rocks they use practicing the activity. Quizlet provides relative dating and follow the house, superposition, determining the 3. relative dating activityintroduction. Worksheet. This interactive online resource for the exact saporiviafrancigena.com dating. Lab.
Instructor: April Koch April teaches high school science and holds a master's degree in education. You may already know how to date a fossil with a rock. But did you know that we can also date a rock with a fossil?
Watch this video to find out how we use index fossils to establish the relative ages of rocks. Review of Relative Dating In previous lessons, we talked about the Geologic Time Scale and how scientists use it to piece together the history of the earth. Fossil Succession Back inthere lived a land surveyor named William Smith.
Index Fossils Now, when we use fossils to date rocks, we have to be careful. Try it risk-free No obligation, cancel anytime. Want to learn more?
Using Fossils to Correlate Strata So, how exactly is an index fossil used for relative dating of rocks? Lesson Summary When rocks are made up of distinct strata, we use stratigraphic succession to determine the relative ages of each of the layers in the rock.
Learning Outcomes When this lesson is completed, you should be able to: Define and explain relative dating of rock and fossils Determine what index fossils are Discuss the missing link of two different time period fossils found in one strata.
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The relative method for dating the age of rocks and fossils helps to date the rocks and fossils by determining the approximate age for the fossil or rock by comparing it to something whose age is already known like similar rocks and fossils. In fact, there are certain rocks and fossils which serve as index fossils for comparison. Paper lab on sequencing of events in a bedrock outcrop. Relative dating laws, unconformities, folds, and faults will be addressed. If you need an answer key, please e-mail me: [email protected] Thank you to the four contributors to this lab. An index fossil is a fossil representing a plant or animal that existed for a relatively short duration of time. These are the fossils that we want to use for relative dating. Index fossils help.
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