Standing as silent sentinels, trees in temperate regions record temperature, rainfall, amount of sunlight and response to disturbance in the width of their annual growth rings. We can use the patterns of these rings as surrogate climate records for years before people recorded weather data. In this project-based course, we will first learn the techniques of dendochronology, the science of reading tree rings, including collection and preparation of samples, data collections and analysis, and the biology of tree growth. We will travel to various sites around New England and collect tree cores in stands where the climate signal is likely to be strong and where we can also find evidence of significant ecological events such as fire, logging, hurricanes and farm abandonment. 300-level students will act as team leaders for the main course projects.