On the Cutting Edge - Professional Development for Geoscience Faculty
Rates, Dates and Geologic Time: Teaching about the Temporal Aspects of Geoscience
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M & M Decay
Rebecca Teed, Wright State University-Main Campus
This is a simulation of radioactive decay which illustrates what a half-life is and explains some of the challenges involved with radiometric dating. Pennies or other cheap coins can be substituted for M&Ms if ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Hierarchical Alignment of Timelines
ilyse resnick, Temple University
In the hierarchical alignment activity students progressively and hierarchically align scale information to a spatial linear representation. The progressive alignment of scales may alleviate the conceptual ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Depositional Environments and Geologic History Labs
Maria Waller, Wellesley College; Kathy Gilbert, Wellesley College
This is a pair of labs that incrementally prepare students to interpret the geologic history of a rock sequence. The first lab introduces students to depositional environments and fossils. The second lab presents a ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Crater Counting Lab exercise
Kevin Mullins, Coconino County Community College
This lab is designed to teach students how we can estimate the age of other planetary surfaces by counting and size-binning impact craters. It also illustrates some examples of how erosional or deopositional ...

The Cosmic Calendar
Erika Grundstrom, Vanderbilt University
In this activity, one takes ALL of time, from the beginning of time (i.e., the Big Bang) all the way up to today, but one compresses it into one year. One can do this for all levels of students depending on how ...

Teaching radioactive decay & radiometric dating: an analog activity based on fluid dynamics
Erika Grundstrom, Vanderbilt University
Radiometric dating/geochronology is a difficult concept for students. Using the (rather messy) medium of shampoo, students watch it flow through holes of different sizes, determine the exponential decay equation, ...

Radiometric Dating Isochron exercise
John Weber, Grand Valley State University
Hands-on introduction to using the isochron method to determine radiometric ages.

Relative Age Correlation
Gwen Daley, Winthrop University
Students learn to apply basic correlation principles to geologic cross-sections.

Time Scales of Climate Change
Erika Grundstrom, Vanderbilt University; Cara Thompson, Santa Monica College; maya elrick, University of New Mexico-Main Campus
This activity introduces students to the fact that climate change occurs at timescales of 1 year to 108 years and there are various drivers to explain these changes. It addresses how scientists detect these scales ...

Dating Students: Relative vs. Numerical Time
Susan Zimmerman, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
This activity introduces students to the fundamental ideas of relative versus radiometric dating, using the students themselves as a sample population. In the first half, the students attempt to order the people in ...

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