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Lesson summary for:
Inferring Ancient Environments from Fossil Foraminifera

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Overview:
Students analyze actual data from samples of microfossils collected from a particular locality. They use this data to infer water depths in the Miocene in order to locate potential petroleum reserves.

Author/Source:
Olson, Hilary

Grade level:
6-8

Time:
40-50 minutes

Concepts:
Correspondence to the Next Generation Science Standards is indicated in parentheses after each relevant concept. See our conceptual framework for details.

  • Fossils provide evidence of past life. (LS4.A)

  • The sequence of forms in the fossil record is reflected in the sequence of the rock layers in which they are found and indicates the order in which they evolved. (LS4.A)

  • Scientists test their ideas using multiple lines of evidence.

  • Scientists use fossils to learn about past life. (LS4.A, ESS1.C)

  • Scientists can test ideas about events and processes long past, very distant, and not directly observable.

  • Science is a human endeavor. (NOS7)

Teacher background:

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