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Humans significantly alter the Earth.9.2 Earth scientists use the geologic record to distinguish between natural and human influences on Earth’s systems. Geologic time is vast, and students sometimes have a hard time grasping the concept of deep time.

The unit builds on the basic understanding that students have developed in middle school, allowing them to deepen their understanding of key stratigraphic principles, relative time, absolute time and its measurement, and interactions between life and the environment throughout the span of time over which our planet have changed from a molten sphere to a world teeming with life.

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B investigate how the atmosphere is heated from Earth's surface due to absorption of solar energy, which is re-radiated as thermal energy and trapped by selective absorbers 15 The student knows that interactions among Earth's five subsystems influence climate and resource availability, which affect Earth's habitability. B investigate evidence such as ice cores, glacial striations, and fossils for climate variability and its use in developing computer models to explain present and predict future climates 15.

E investigate the causes and history of eustatic sea-level changes that result in transgressive and regressive sedimentary sequences 14.

A analyze and evaluate a variety of fossil types such as transitional fossils, proposed transitional fossils, fossil lineages, and significant fossil deposits with regard to their appearance, completeness, and alignment with scientific explanations in light of this fossil data 8.

C understand how multiple dating methods are used to construct the geologic time scale, which represents Earth's approximate 4.6-billion-year history 8.

D discuss mechanisms and causes such as selective absorbers, major volcanic eruptions, solar luminance, giant meteorite impacts, and human activities that result in significant changes in Earth's climate 13.