Rates and Time > Activity Posters > South Carolina Studies: Bringing the Geologic Time Scale Down to Earth in the Students' Backyard

South Carolina Studies: Bringing the Geologic Time Scale Down to Earth in the Students' Backyard

John R. Wagner
,
Clemson University
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Summary

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.

Context

Audience:

general public

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered:

ability to read maps and legends

How the activity is situated in the course:

part of an 8th grade unit on geologic time that fits into a South Carolina Studies unit on the Coastal Plain of South Carolina - plate tectonics must be covered first

Goals

Content/concepts goals for this activity:

The earth processes we see today (historic time)are similar to those that occurred in the past (geologic time).

Geologic skills:

reading and interpreting paleogeographic maps

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity:

linking paleogeographic features to plate tectonic events occurring during that particular time of geologic history

Other skills goals for this activity:

using data collection methods practiced at one site to obtain new data at a different site

Description of the activity/assignment

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.

Evaluation

Students will be considered to have mastered the concepts involved if they are able to successfully transfer the interpretation methods learned at Drayton Hall to analyze the geological history of their own school site.

Teachers have filled out 'feedback forms' after using the activity. Some classroom visits by external evaluator are planned.

Logistics

the on-site field guide requires students to actually visit the site. all other materials provided on-line

normal field excursion hassles (time, transportation, money)

Poster Presentation

South Carolina Studies: Bringing the Geologic Time Scale Down to Earth in the Students' Backyard (Acrobat (PDF) 1.8MB Jan2 06)

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