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The Dating Game: Radioactive Half-Life and Dating Techniques
In this lab activity using M&M candy, students will explore the concepts of radioactive decay and dating. Students generate a radioactive decay table to simplify the math, use their data to plot a decay graph, develop the concept of half-life, and then use the graph to find the age of a mummified seal in Wright Valley, Antarctica. In a follow-up exercise, students will solve a mysterious Arctic murder.
Intended for grade levels:
  • Middle (6-8)
Type of resource:
  • For the classroom:
    • Lab activity
Subject:
  • Biology
  • Geological Sciences:
    • Geologic time
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Copyright and other restrictions information are unknown.
DLESE Catalog ID: DLESE-000-000-005-890
Educational standards:
  • National Science Education Standards (NSES):
    • 5-8:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • A - Science as inquiry:
        • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
        • Understanding about scientific inquiry
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Earth's history
    • 9-12:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • A - Science as inquiry:
        • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
        • Understandings about scientific inquiry
      • B - Physical science:
        • Structure of atoms
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Origin and evolution of the earth system
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Publisher: The ARMADA Project
Teachers Experiencing Antarctica and the Arctic
http://tea.armadaproject.org/

Author: Hillary Tulley
Niles North High School