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ERESE > Activities > Hotspot Lesson: Relative Dating

Hotspot Lesson: Relative Dating

Jamie A. Russell, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
View Lesson Plan at ERESE ...
This material is replicated on a number of sites as part of the SERC Pedagogic Service Project

Summary

This lesson explains the application of relative dating for volcanic features in the ocean. The initial lecture focuses on the concept of relative dating. Relative dating of island chains was a fundamental step toward the development of the hotspot theory utilized over 100 years before the hotspot theory was introduced. The relative dating activity allows students to practice relatively dating of volcanic features. After seeing the relative dating lesson, they have the tools necessary to identify which volcanic features are relatively older than others. This lesson includes 10 images of different volcanic stages of seamount formation as envisioned by Charles Darwin in the 1800's.

Relative Dating Lesson Spacer Relative Dating Lesson

Learning Goals

  • Teach students the concept of relative age dating.
  • Prepare students to make predictions of the relative age of volcanoes based on predictable progressions.
  • Context for Use

    This activity was developed for use in a high school (grades 9-12) earth science class. It is also appropriate for an introductory level college geoscience class. Lesson duration: Approximately 35 minutes.

    Description and Teaching Materials

    The Relative Dating Lecture prepares students to be able to rank the images in the Relative Dating Activity from youngest to oldest and how to apply this to the formation of seamounts and volcanic islands.

    Relative Dating Lesson
  • This lecture explains the application of relative dating for volcanic features in the ocean. The initial lecture focuses on the concept of relative dating. Relative dating of island chains was a fundamental step toward the development of the hotspot theory utilized over 100 years before the hotspot theory was introduced. The goal of this lesson is to prepare students to make predictions of the relative age of volcanoes based on predictable progressions. Download ...
  • The relative dating activity allows you to practice relatively dating of volcanic features. After seeing the relative dating lesson you will have the tools necessary to identify which volcanic features are relatively older than others. This object includes 10 images of different volcanic stages of seamount formation. Download ...
  • Assessment

    Based on the information presented in the lecture, students should be able to rank the images of island and volcanic processes from youngest to oldest. Their performance in this task is the assessable product.

    References and Resources

    Lesson Materials

    Relative Dating Lecture
    Relative Dating Activity

    ERESE Resource Matrices

    Formation of Seamounts
    Hotspots and Plate Motion
    Volcanoes

    Outside Links on Hotspots

    Wikipedia
    Google

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