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Paleontology Teaching Activities


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How Old is that Thing on that Rock? part of MnSTEP Teaching Activity Collection:MnSTEP Activity Mini-collection
This activity is an observational activity where studentobserve differnt fossils and predict what they are seeing and how old it might be.

My Favorite Dead Thing part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
This is a short writing assignment asking the students to write about their favorite extinct organism. This gives the students a chance to explore something that they find interesting and at the same time link it ...

Identifying Fossils: Exploring the Mississippi River Bluffs part of MnSTEP Teaching Activity Collection:MnSTEP Activity Mini-collection
This activity is a geology lab where students learn about fossils found in sedimentary rocks and show their understanding by writing a literary nonfiction paper from the perspective of one of those fossils.

Indentification of Earth Materials part of MnSTEP Teaching Activity Collection:MnSTEP Activity Mini-collection
By presenting the students with fossils and other earth materials and giving clues as to their origin, they will be able to identify the fossils and materials and be able to form a hypothesis as to how they were formed and what it was before preservation.

Exploring the nature of geoscience using cartoon cards part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching the Methods of Geoscience:Activities
In this activity, students work in groups to put a set of cartoon cards in order, much in the way that we might assemble a geologic history. The primary goal of the activity is to explore the nature of science in general and the nature of geoscience or historical science specifically, without requiring any content knowledge.

Ground Penetrating Radar Survey of a Cemetery: Interpretation part of Cutting Edge:Structural Geology:Structure, Geophysics, and Tectonics 2012:Activities
This activity is an interpretation of a ground penetrating radar (GPR) data set collected from a 19th century slave cemetery in North Carolina.

JiTT - Ethics of Fossil Collecting part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What do you think it means for a fossil resource to be "abused"? 2) What's the issue with fossil hunting on federal land (such as National Parks)? Explain what your interpretation of the conflict ...

GEOLogic: Museums and their Dinosaur Displays part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up five top Museums with 2 fossils that they have on display based on clues presented from various points of view.

GEOLogic: Lagerstatten and Unique Fossils part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up several unique fossils with the site and location where it was found and it's geologic age.

GEOLogic: The Three Stooges and Their Pet Dinosaurs part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up each of the Stooges with their favorite group and species of dinosaur based on clues given from different perspectives.

GEOLogic: State Fossils part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to identify states with their state fossil and the year in which it was declared, based on clues given from various points of view.

GEOLogic: Dinosaur Trackways part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students must associate different dinosaur trackways with their locations and the rock formations containing the trackways based on clues given from various points of view.

Jurassic Park Debate part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
This role-playing exercise casts students as scientific specialists, assigned to a group either supporting or opposing the cloning of dinosaurs. Each group researches and presents its argument. -

An Interactive Game Approach to Learning in Historical Geology and Paleontology part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Games:Examples
The instructor uses a series of games to help students identify and answer questions about fossils. The game grows more complex over time as the instructors add rules and phyla to identify. -

Woolly Mammoth Excavation and Lab Work part of Cutting Edge:Geoscience in the Field:Field Experiences:Posters
students participate in authentic research project w/ scientists students learn scientific process through experience students participate in all aspects of the project including problem solving

Timeline of the Early Earth part of Cutting Edge:Online Teaching:Activities for Teaching Online
Students assemble timelines of the early evolution of Earth's atmosphere, lithosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere by examining data from Archean rocks and minerals.

Mary Anning: An artistic look at the "Princess of Paleontology" part of MnSTEP Teaching Activity Collection:MnSTEP Activity Mini-collection
This lesson is a classroom activity where students learn about paleontologist Mary Anning, briefly learn about sedimentary rock, and complete observation drawings of Platteville Limestone fossils.

Radiocarbon dating project part of Cutting Edge:Rates and Time:Teaching Activities
This is an example of an activity used in a Quaternary Geochronology course, in which a small group of students (3-4) is tasked with transforming a set of activity measurements into radiocarbon ages and calibrated ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Aurora Mastodont Project - Matrix Analyses Project part of Cutting Edge:Develop Program-Wide Abilities:Undergraduate Research:2014 Workshop:Activities
This is a laboratory based assignment that is for Introductory level geoscience classes (Physical Geology, Historical Geology, Earth Science) that brings an authentic research experience to your students. In the ...

South Carolina Studies: Bringing the Geologic Time Scale Down to Earth in the Students' Backyard part of Rates and Time:GSA Activity Posters
Students visit Drayton Hall historic plantation near Charleston, South Carolina and are led on a field trip that starts with a discussion of documented historic changes that have affected the mansion and the surrounding property. The field trip continues with a study of Native American artifacts and ends with analysis of coastal plain deposits exposed along the Ashley River. Students use paleogeographic maps to discuss both historic and prehistoric changes to the landscape. Back in the classroom, students gather data to draw paleogeographic maps of their own school site through geologic time.