Teaching relative dating

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By matching partial sequences, the truly oldest layers with fossils can be worked out.

By correlating fossils from various parts of the world, scientists are able to give relative ages to particular strata. Relative dating tells scientists if a rock layer is "older" or "younger" than another.

Return to top The study and comparison of exposed rock layers or strata in various parts of the earth led scientists in the early 19th century to propose that the rock layers could be correlated from place to place.If the letters "T" and "C" represent fossils in the oldest rock layer, they are the oldest fossils, or the first fossils formed in the past for this sequence of rock layers. Now, look for a card that has either a "T" or "C" written on it.Since this card has a common letter with the first card, it must go on top of the "TC" card.Time factors of millions and billions of years is difficult even for adults to comprehend.However, "relative" dating or time can be an easy concept for students to learn.

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