Counting Tree Rings

3.3 based on 10 ratings

Updated on Aug 23, 2013

It’s commonly believed that the counting tree ringsreveals the age (in years) of the tree itself. But countingtree rings may reveal more than just the age of a tree. This project aims to discover new ideas through a careful analysis of tree rings.


How can we learn more about trees by counting tree rings?


  • Computer with internet access.
  • Access to actual tree stumps
  • Digital camera
  • Typical office/craft supplies (such as paper, pens & poster-board)


  1. Read overviews of relevant topics (see bibliography and terms listed above).
  2. Collect a number of digital photos of tree rings, both online and with your own camera.
  3. If possible, also collect some actual tree ring samples.
  4. Analyze, describe and categorize each sample and photo.
  5. Develop and test your own theories about tree rings.
  6. Interpret your findings in a detailed report.
  7. Show results visually using charts and graphs.
  8. Display any interesting photos taken throughout the course of the experiment.
Judee Shipman is a Bay Area Educational Consultant and professional writer of quality educational materials.  Her recent writing credits include (a popular and entertaining website about states), and a book called The Portable Chess Coach (Cardoza, 2006), currently available in stores.

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