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How old is the Earth?
~4.6 billion years 95%  95%  [ 72 ]
6000 years 4%  4%  [ 3 ]
Other 1%  1%  [ 1 ]
Total votes : 76
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 Post subject: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:44 pm 
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I am bleeding for the future of science education in the US.

There is currently a mild flame war (people are mostly polite) on a teaching forum I read about how old the Earth is and whether or not humans and dinosaurs co-existed.

I wish I were joking. These are mostly elementary school teachers, meaning they teach science to small children!

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:08 am 
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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:21 am 
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I'm glad there aren't too many options because I would probably have got it wrong. When I saw the topic I thought 'oh shiitake this is probably something I should know' and thought about it for a few minutes and decided to go for whatever was closest to a few billion. Glad I wasn't far off.

Hopefully these kids will grow up to realise this was just another thing they were lied to about like santa and the easter bunny. I mean, kids are told all kinds of crazy shiitake, the smart ones will figure it out sooner or later.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:24 am 
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caterpillar wrote:
I'm glad there aren't too many options because I would probably have got it wrong. When I saw the topic I thought 'oh shiitake this is probably something I should know' and thought about it for a few minutes and decided to go for whatever was closest to a few billion. Glad I wasn't far off.

Hopefully these kids will grow up to realise this was just another thing they were lied to about like santa and the easter bunny. I mean, kids are told all kinds of crazy shiitake, the smart ones will figure it out sooner or later.


I like to keep things simple, especially with I have an obvious bias.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:08 am 
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I would be surprised if a PPKer thought it was around 6000 years old.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:39 am 
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Sarah-Jane wrote:
I would be surprised if a PPKer thought it was around 6000 years old.


I needed reassurance that the world is sane.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 5:38 am 
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My thought was four-and-a-half-ish billion years... but then again sometimes these estimates change. So, yeah, your alternatives made the answer easy. I think everyone should know that the answer is of the order of "a few billion years" like caterpillar said. I think I'm OK with people not having an actual number as long as they're in the right ballpark. I'm a little afraid for America too, if they teach otherwise.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 7:12 am 
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Sorry, I trolled you ;)

I think up until a couple years ago, I thought it was about 2 billion, was kind of surprised at the 4 billion number. That is a lot of years.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 7:40 am 
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I can understand people debating the age of the earth, but the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs? Seriously? I mean, okay, it's still kind of hilarious. I mean, how terrible! *cracking up*

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 8:02 am 
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I heard from someone who believed in the young earth 'theory' that the legends of dragons came from the coexistence of dinosaurs and man.

I've heard other things as well like dinosaur bones were planted by god to test people...

And I really think it is only one subset that believes that stuff. A Catholic priest once told me that the 6 days it took god to create the earth could've been billions of years because god's days aren't really ours. In some things it does seem that they don't seem to fight science as much... especially after that little 'sun revolves around the earth' thing.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 10:38 am 
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Young earth creationists shouldn't be allowed to teach children.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 11:51 am 
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choirqueer wrote:
I can understand people debating the age of the earth, but the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs? Seriously? I mean, okay, it's still kind of hilarious. I mean, how terrible! *cracking up*


What makes one of those more debatable than the other, just out of curiosity? It seems to me there is equally solid science to end both debates...

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 11:59 am 
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My geography teacher taught me that the world was 4,600,000,007 years old. He added a year every year he taught geography because he said it didn't make sense for the earth not to age each year.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:50 pm 
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All of existence and everything you and I know or could know is at this point nearly 40 years old, and I have no definitive proof otherwise.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 1:44 pm 
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jordanpattern wrote:
choirqueer wrote:
I can understand people debating the age of the earth, but the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs? Seriously? I mean, okay, it's still kind of hilarious. I mean, how terrible! *cracking up*


What makes one of those more debatable than the other, just out of curiosity? It seems to me there is equally solid science to end both debates...


Oh, I didn't mean debating whether the earth is 6000 years old or billions of years old. I meant like, debating the precise age of the earth, like exactly how many billions of years.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 1:46 pm 
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linanil wrote:

I've heard other things as well like dinosaur bones were planted by god to test people...


cue Bill:


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 2:17 pm 
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linanil wrote:
I've heard other things as well like dinosaur bones were planted by god to test people...

And I really think it is only one subset that believes that stuff. A Catholic priest once told me that the 6 days it took god to create the earth could've been billions of years because god's days aren't really ours.


I was raised Mormon, and heard both these ideas at church. Pretty sure they were considered speculation, not official doctrine, but even as a kid they sounded wrong. God plants red herrings?!


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 3:30 pm 
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choirqueer wrote:
jordanpattern wrote:
choirqueer wrote:
I can understand people debating the age of the earth, but the coexistence of humans and dinosaurs? Seriously? I mean, okay, it's still kind of hilarious. I mean, how terrible! *cracking up*


What makes one of those more debatable than the other, just out of curiosity? It seems to me there is equally solid science to end both debates...


Oh, I didn't mean debating whether the earth is 6000 years old or billions of years old. I meant like, debating the precise age of the earth, like exactly how many billions of years.


The billions part is well constrained, but there have been tiny adjusts to the millions, both due to margin of error, and new discoveries/calculations.

Linanil: I wish those teachers were trolling!

It mildly amuses me that the Catholic Church is now so adaptable about most science. But there are a lot of Dominionists around, and apparently they like to teach. There is actually a big new school opening near hear that is heavily advertising using A Beka curriculum.

One of these teachers (ok, it is rude that Im sneering at him on another forum) also tells his class that Pluto is a planet because it's a "silly issue" and that to,atoes are vegetables because it makes more sense.

Actually, my co-teacher teaches biology and doesn't believe in evolution! In her case though, she does keep her thoughts out of it and she is a good teacher. I don't think she is a YEC, but I'm afraid to ask. She is great in the classroom, so I don't suppose it matters. I only found this out a couple months ago and was shocked.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:05 pm 
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Because I believe in fair and balanced science, the Earth is 2,300,003,000 years old.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:18 pm 
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Funny, you should bring this up..

I read this article on Huff Post yesterday (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/25/louisiana-students-loch-ness-monster-disprove-evolution_n_1624643.html?utm_hp_ref=science&ir=Science) and didn't know whether to laugh or cry.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:25 pm 
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mollyjade wrote:
My geography teacher taught me that the world was 4,600,000,007 years old. He added a year every year he taught geography because he said it didn't make sense for the earth not to age each year.


I think I love your geography teacher. I wanted to troll this thread but I couldn't bring myself to do it.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 5:07 pm 
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gwenc02 wrote:
Funny, you should bring this up..

I read this article on Huff Post yesterday (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/25/louisiana-students-loch-ness-monster-disprove-evolution_n_1624643.html?utm_hp_ref=science&ir=Science) and didn't know whether to laugh or cry.


That article is what started it all.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 5:54 pm 
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I attended an elementary school associated with the Assembly of God and the teachers there insisted that Noah brought dinosaurs with him on his ark.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 7:58 pm 
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linanil wrote:
And I really think it is only one subset that believes that stuff. A Catholic priest once told me that the 6 days it took god to create the earth could've been billions of years because god's days aren't really ours. In some things it does seem that they don't seem to fight science as much... especially after that little 'sun revolves around the earth' thing.


There's still some literalists around who really didn't agree with Vatican II, and in the protestant side there's a lot of literalists everywhere. I even know of atheists who believe scientists planted dinosaur bones, they never existed.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is the Earth?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 8:15 pm 
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My brother had a high school earth science teacher who was a young earth creationist and would sneakily insert his bullshiitake into lessons. My parents complained but the school didn't really seem to care.


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