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Dating the fossil record worksheet

This page contains activities and infomation about dating fossils and placing them in the context of the history of life on Earth. During its lifetime the earth has been the setting for countless interesting geological and biological events.

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The activities on this page are designed to help students begin to understand the age of the earth.These processes occur, but they are not mechanisms for true evolution of basic body styles.Nor do we see punctuated equilibrium transforming them rapidly.In the case of radiocarbon dating, the half-life of carbon 14 is 5,730 years.This half life is a relatively small number, which means that carbon 14 dating is not particularly helpful for very recent deaths and deaths more than 50,000 years ago.Sedimentary rock: a type of rock that is composed of fragments of rock and mineral grains of various size (clay-boulder).

Some sediments are made by precipitation of minerals like salt, or from marine skeletal fragments.

Carbon is naturally in all living organisms and is replenished in the tissues by eating other organisms or by breathing air that contains carbon.

At any particular time all living organisms have approximately the same ratio of carbon 12 to carbon 14 in their tissues.

Radiocarbon dating can be used on samples of bone, cloth, wood and plant fibers.

The half-life of a radioactive isotope describes the amount of time that it takes half of the isotope in a sample to decay.

The Timeline Reseach project and Conference on the Age of the Earth are designed to give students a visual and kinesthetic picture of the age of the earth.