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ERIC Number: EJ1002215
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 8
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8121
Reconstructing Earth's Past Climates: The Hidden Secrets of Pollen
Steele, Adrienne; Warny, Sophie
Science Activities: Classroom Projects and Curriculum Ideas, v50 n2 p62-71 2013
"Palynology" is the study of fossil pollen and spores, and these tiny grains can provide fundamental information about past climates on Earth. Among their many unique and useful properties, pollen and spores are composed of some of the most chemically resistant organic compounds found in nature. They are also produced in vast quantities and are unique to the specific plant from which they originate. All these features make them ideal to reconstruct past climates from both recent history as well as from the ancient past. The purpose of this activity is to get students familiar with palynology and how scientists study climate change. It is based on real palynological data acquired from Antarctic cores obtained recently from the ANDRILL and SHALDRIL drilling campaigns. In order for students to understand this research and its importance, they will separate and identify pollen and spores from a simulated core sample in which different species of plants are represented as different colors of glitter. Students will compare the types and abundance of pollen and spores found in each layer of the core sample and research the climate preferences of the types of plants recovered in order to reconstruct the past climates of Antarctica. (Contains 3 tables and 15 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Antarctica