# Half life and radioactive dating

But it is possible to measure how long it takes for half the nuclei of a piece of radioactive material to decay.This is called the half-life of the radioactive isotope.Carbon-14 is radioactive and undergoes radioactive decay.Radioactive materials contain some nuclei that are stable and other nuclei that are unstable.This experiment is best used by student working in pairs.Grade Level: 5-12 grade Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCI) 3-5ETS1-2, MS-ESS1-4, HS-ESS1-6 Time for Teacher Preparation 40-60 minutes – To gather materials Activity Time: 40-60 minutes (1 Class Period) Materials: Objectives Students try to model radioactive decay by using the scientific thought process of creating a hypothesis, then testing it through inference.By extension, this experiment is a useful analogy to radioactive decay and carbon dating.Students use M&M’s (or pennies and puzzle pieces) to demonstrate the idea of radioactive decay.

It is also useful in the mathematics classroom by the process of graphing the data.All three isotopes have the same atomic number of 6, but have different numbers of neutrons.Carbon-14 has 2 more neutrons than carbon-12 and 1 more than carbon-13, both of which are stable.Description: With the Half-Life Laboratory, students gain a better understanding of radioactive dating and half-lives.

Students are able to visualize and model what is meant by the half-life of a reaction.

Isotopes have the same chemical properties, but different physical properties.