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Film Guides: The Day the Mesozoic Died

Summary

The following classroom-ready resources complement The Day the Mesozoic Died, which tells the story of the extraordinary detective work that led to the stunning discovery that an asteroid struck Earth 66 million years ago, triggering a mass extinction of animals, plants and even microorganisms.

These guides and quiz support the short film The Day the Mesozoic Died. The “At a Glance Film Guide” provides a short summary of the film, along with key concepts and ties to selected curricula and textbooks. The “In-Depth Film Guide for Teachers” includes a more detailed summary and background information, discussion points, lists of related resources and references, and answers to the accompanying student “Quiz.” The "Quiz" is designed as a summative assessment that probes student understanding of the key concepts addressed in the film. These documents are updated as new information and resources become available.

Note: The In-Depth-Guide was revised October 2014 to include film pause points and discussion questions.


Curriculum and Textbook Connections:

Curriculum

NGSS (April 2013)
MS-PS3.C, MS-LS2.C, MS-LS4.A, MS-LS4.C, MS-ESS1.C, MS-ESS2.A, HS-LS2.B, HS-LS2.C, HS-LS4.C, HS-LS4.D,HS-ESS1.C, HS-ESS2.A, HS-ESS2.E, HS-PS1.C

AP Biology(2012–13 Standards)
4.B.4, 1.C.1, SP5

IB Biology (2009)
5.1, 5.4.8, D.2.7, D.2.9, D.1.3, G.2.6, G.2.7

APES: Themes and Topics (2013)
Themes: 1, 3; Topics: I.A; VII.C

Textbook

Miller & Levine, Biology (2010)
1.1-1.3, 19.1, 19.2

Reese et al. Campbell Biology (9th Ed. 2011)
1.3-1.4, 25.4

Pearson Earth Science (2011 Ed.)
1.5, 13.3, 22.3

Cunningham, Environmental Science A Global Concern (11e)
2.1–2.3, 4.1, 4.4, 14.1, 15.3, 15.5, 16.2

Friedland and Relyea, Environmental Science for AP (2012)
Ch.1 (p. 15), Ch. 4 (pp99–108), Ch. 5, Ch. 8 (pp. 208–209) Ch. 15 (pp410–415),


Supporting Materials (10)

Short Film
The disappearance of the dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous period posed one of the greatest, long-standing scientific mysteries. This three-act film tells the story of the extraordinary detective work that solved it. 
Classroom Resource
A lesson in which students calculate the mass, size, and kinetic energy of the K-T asteroid based on the total abundance of iridium in the K-T boundary layer.
Classroom Resource
A lesson in which students analyze graphs and data on pollen grains and fern spores to form a picture of the living landscape before and after the K-T mass extinction.
Classroom Resource
This hands-on activity requires students to “visit” different K-T boundary sites.
Classroom Resource
A worksheet in which students write down the evidence that led to the discovery that an asteroid struck Earth about 66 million years ago, causing a mass extinction. 
Classroom Resource
A hands-on activity in which students see first-hand the difference in foraminifera fossils below and above the K-T boundary.
Classroom Resource
A lesson in which students analyze the chemical data that led researchers to conclude that the K-T boundary layer contained an extraordinary concentration of iridium. 
Classroom Resource
A lesson in which students read a passage and answer questions about the information presented, testing their non-fiction reading comprehension.
Classroom Resource
A worksheet in which students calculate how much iridium was released, and eventually deposited all over the Earth, by the impact of the asteroid that caused the K-T extinction.
Classroom Resource
A short article by Dr. Sean B. Carroll detailing the discoveries covered in the film The Day The Mesozoic Died.

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