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Have students circulate the samples around the classroom until every group has had a chance to test each one.
Ask students to report their data and find the averages of the fossil ages.
Give students 40-50 pieces of candy; have them count the exact number to save you some time.
Then, ask them to create the following chart on a piece of paper: Students will expand the chart based on their needs as they run the simulation.
This activity can serve as a review game before a quiz or test, but needs to be played after students have had some practice solving problems like the example that follows: Give students paper or small whiteboards and display one problem at a time on the blackboard.
Have students race to see who can solve it the quickest.
Beads work well, but even the tiny paper discs created by a hole punch will work.Although this activity seldom results in a perfect half-life curve, it can help students understand the underlying concept.To help students understand what scientists actually do to determine the age of a fossil using radiometric dating (or the long-hand version of what they do), provide student groups with faux fossil samples that you create ahead of time.Radioactive elements are unstable; they breakdown spontaneously into more stable atoms over time, a process known as radioactive decay.Radioactive decay occurs at a constant rate, specific to each radioactive isotope.