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Relative age dating also means paying attention to crosscutting relationships.

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Unlike people, you can’t really guess the age of a rock from looking at it.

Yet, you’ve heard the news: Earth is 4.6 billion years old. That corn cob found in an ancient Native American fire pit is 1,000 years old. Geologic age dating—assigning an age to materials—is an entire discipline of its own.

Geologists establish the age of rocks in two ways: numerical dating and relative dating.

Numerical dating determines the actual ages of rocks through the study of radioactive decay.

In a way this field, called geochronology, is some of the purest detective work earth scientists do.

There are two basic approaches: relative age dating, and absolute age dating.We do this all the time in our regular day to day lives.For example, lets put the following movies in order of relative age from oldest to youngest: Twilight, Finding Nemo, the Avengers, the Hunger Games.The same thing can be done with geologic features in a rock outcrop.To do this geologists use the Laws of Relative Dating.Time factors of millions and billions of years is difficult even for adults to comprehend.

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