Any evidence of past life preserved in a geologic context, such as within rock or sediment, is called a fossil. In this activity you will work as a paleontologist — a scientist who studies fossils to understand ancient landscapes, climate, and life on Earth — to find and identify fossils.
How are people affecting your local environment? How is our planet changing? Join the “citizen science” movement, and you can help discover the answers.
Citizen science is a form of open collaboration in which members of the public participate in the scientific process to address real-world problems. Volunteers can work with scientists to identify research questions, collect and analyze data, interpret results, make new discoveries, develop technologies and applications, as well as solve complex problems.
Scientists collect data to understand Earth and how it changes. Quantitative data involves taking measurements, while qualitative data are observations and descriptions of phenomena. When it comes to climate, scientists try to collect as much and as many types of data as possible to be able to analyze how climate is changing and what effects it is having. Because climate affects all areas of the world, collecting this data is a large undertaking. This is where you can help.
Soils are a key component of the interface between the biosphere (life) and the geosphere (land). Soils support life.“Our soils support 95 percent of all food production, and by 2060, our soils will be asked to give us as much food as we have consumed in the last 500 years,” according to Living Soil by The Soil Health Institute.