Radio decay dating
Often students get bogged down in the fact that they don't "understand" how and why radioactive elements decay and miss the whole point of this exercise.
If they can begin to comprehend that it is random and spontaneous, they end up feeling less nervous about the whole thing.
The half-life is the amount of time it takes for one half of the initial amount of the parent, radioactive isotope, to decay to the daughter isotope.
This can be interpreted in two ways: why it is important to know the age of a planet or how is age dating important in determining the age of a planet?And once that first kernel pops, it will never be a kernel again..is forever changed! ) Teaching example using popcorn to teach radioactive decay "A variety of a chemical element (strictly, of one particular element) which is distinguished from the other varieties of the element by a different mass number but shares the same atomic number and chemical properties (and so occupies the same position in the periodic table)." That definition may not mean anything to them.Prior to 1905 the best and most accepted age of the Earth was that proposed by Lord Kelvin based on the amount of time necessary for the Earth to cool to its present temperature from a completely liquid state.We have rocks from the Moon (brought back), meteorites, and rocks that we know came from Mars.We can then use radioactive age dating in order to date the ages of the surfaces (when the rocks first formed, i.e. We also have meteorites from asteroids and can date them, too.