Beyond the Clock of Eras

Recently I began musing the step beyond the impressionism of the Clock of Eras.  I decided to insert six lessons focusing on the process of the rise of life. I enjoyed the Claremont unrolling of the clock into a timeline.  The primary aim is for the 9 to 12.  We did our first lesson on Tuesday.

Materials to make or acquire for Lesson 1

  1. Stellar nucleosynthesis work  (remove the tiny circles of the elements)
  2. The charts from the God With No Hands Lesson
  3. Pre-hadean and Hadean Eon materials
    • small Periodic Table  (that will fit at the end of the stellar nucleosynthesis work
    • picture of a cratered planet
    • paper for the sea soup chart
    • bottle of ammonia (for WAFTING not sniffing)
    • Avery label-like dots in 6 colors
    • Black Sharpie

Notes:  Because of their age, the children will remember doing works from elementary but will recall the impressions and the joy of the works.  We are going to ask them to add a layer to their impressions of these works.  This is much like the third years leading the God With No Hands Lesson.

Goal for Lesson 1:   To see how the elements and compounds created in the tumult of the earth’s creation led to complex carbon chains being formed.


Show the God With No Hands Charts (hanging on the wall) or in the form of the small hand drawn cards.

Invite the children to remember back to their first year in Lower Elementary when they first heard about the God With No Hands.  So much has happened since that time.

Give the children space to remember together.  Invite them to retell the story and put the cards in order.

After a bit.

Ask a child to unroll the Stellar Nucleosynthesis mat and allow the children to begin forming the star explosions.  Some one will inevitably ask about the elements that you have removed.

Ahh.  I thought we could put a periodic table of the elements down.  What do you think?  

Place it at the end of the work. Take out the new black ribbon and unroll it to the end of the Hadaen eon.

At the beginning of the ribbon indicate the God With No Hands Chart 1.

Remember when God spoke and the laws that govern the universe were created and the stars began to heat and explode creating the basic elements (indicate the Stellar Nucleosynthesis work) until Supernova stars exploded and all the elements were strewn across the universe.  Remember how time passed as the elements and gravity worked together to create Solar Systems and planets.  (lay down the burning earth card)

We need to take up the story again and see how the laws that govern the universe work out on Earth.

Lay down the pre-Hadaen card.

This time before the Earth had formed a tentative crust lasted a long time.  Scientists think that it might have begun about 14.5 Billion years ago and lasted to 4.5 Billion years ago.  That is 10 billion years. 

Indicate the God With No Hands Chart of the earth exploding and spewing smoke.

As the earth cooled enough to form a crust that was always rupturing and spewing out volcanic matter into the atmosphere and onto the crust; change was beginning to take place.  This is a very chaotic time.

The laws of the universe worked to draw the heavier metals like iron to the core of the Earth. The lighter elements moved outward.  Many of them were spewed out by means of volcanoes.  These chemicals comprised Earth’s early atmosphere.  It was very different that the modern atmosphere.  Do you know what makes up our atmosphere now?

While they are discussing this, lay down your paper to draw on.  The answer is: mostly a mixture of nitrogen and oxygen.

Scientists theorize that the early atmosphere was a combination of ammonia (NH), helium, hydrogen, carbon dioxide (CO2), and methane (CH4).  (pass around the ammonia to WAFT and discuss the smell of methane gas – breaking wind). Write down “ammonia” and under it place two Avery label-type colored dots.  Continue with the others using the chemical layout of the atoms. The colors represent the elements throughout.

It began to rain the ash, soot, and dust particles out of the atmosphere.  The rains also washed the ammonia, methane and lots of heavy metals, too into the newly forming seas.  The seas became soupy with all these chemicals.

Using the paper begin to show how Carbon forms long chains – use the dots to form a fat chain.

Carbon is an element that has a strong attraction to its own kind and likes to form long chains.  These chains could be thousands of molecules long.  This is the gift of carbon to the world.  It is the only element that can form four very strong bonds with itself.  These strong bonds are called covalent bonds.  It also likes to form strong bonds with hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and sulfur.    The seas became full of a toxic mix of these very long carbon chains.

Lay down the ticket for the Hadaen Eon.

Because of the Hell-like environment on Earth, this Eon’s name comes from the Greek for Hell – Hades.  This is not a particularly long time period.  It lasted from 4.5 to 3.8 BillionYears ago. It lasted 70,000,000 years.




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Filed under Astronomy, Geography and World Studies, God With No Hands, Montessori, Physics, Science

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