GEOS 220: Environmental History of Southwest
Outside Activities

Outside activity #1:
Crossdating Tree Rings by Skeleton Plotting

Access this activity on the web through this page.

First, read the explanatory pages that lead up to the fun page: Try skeleton plotting for yourself.

Note: This activity runs Java applets, which are becoming hard to run due to security restrictions. For example, it looks like the Google Chrome browser doesn't allow applets. Try it instead in Foxfire or IE. If your laptop isn't enabled for Java applets and you don't want the hassle of enabling your laptop, then do this activity at any UA computer, like in the libraries. The applets run there after clicking ok to accept the risk of running applets (our applets are safe). Then, doc files can be printed at the library or saved to data devices through the USB ports.

In any case, do not bog down and struggle for hours just to run the crossdating applet. Come see Nick or me for help, before spending hours to no avail.

When you succeed at crossdating a virtual sample:

Outside activity #2:
Arizona State Museum

The University of Arizona has many museums, most of which are on the main campus and are free of charge to students. In this activity, you are to visit the Arizona State Museum in order to learn about recent human-environment interactions in the Southwest. The actual assignment is as follows:

  • The Museum is on the north side of University Blvd, across the street from Centennial Hall and west of Old Main. 
  • Museum hours are 10-5 PM on Monday–Saturday; closed Sunday.
  • Admission to the museum is free for UA people, including students. Bring your Cat Card.
  • Specifically for this activity, visit the "Paths of Life" exhibit. Expect to spend about an hour in this exhibit. 
  • Write an essay on just one tribe featured in the Paths of Life:
    • Pick one modern tribe featured in the Paths of Life (but not Yaqui)
    • Focus on human-environment interaction. For example:
      • Did (does) this tribe practice agriculture?
      • If not, how did (does) this tribe obtain food?
      • How did (does) this tribe manage for water?
      • Did (does) this tribe utilize its land on a seasonal basis? How so?
  • Required: 1-page essay, typed, double spaced. 
  • Graded on depth and writing. 
    • Use more than one paragraph
    • Don't forget a topic sentence for each paragraph
    • As usual in this course, try writing completely without any first-person "I" or "we"
    • Also, it's not necessary to include the word people, as in the Hopi people
    • One more time: No quoting in this class, ever.
  • Due Thursday, Nov 16, 2017.
Arizona Museum map

Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, The University of Arizona
Tucson, Arizona 85721 USA
Main Office: (520) 621-1608, Fax: (520) 621-8229
Comments to Paul Sheppard: sheppard @