Layers and Laws: The Law of Superposition and Index Fossils

This Layers and Laws: The Law of Superposition and Index Fossils lesson plan also includes:

What can layers of rock teach us about the climate? Young scientists solve a mystery about who stole a cookie by applying the law of superposition. Then, they apply the same concept to solve a more difficult mystery, trying to determine which fossils belong together. Using all of these clues, scholars write about the climate during the time of a specific fossil layer.

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CCSS: Adaptable
NGSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas

  • Show samples of sedimentary rock layers
  • Discuss radioactive dating and index fossils in more detail
Classroom Considerations

  • Requires prior knowledge of the formation of fossils and sedimentary rock
Pros

  • Includes an answer key for worksheets and discussion questions
  • Provides supplementary resources
  • Majority of the lesson requires a high level of pupil engagement
Cons

  • None
Common Core

NGSS