A recurring theme in our homeschool is dinosaurs. Trevor has studied them, and the girls are now interested in learning more about them for the second time in two years. It’s a challenge to keep things new, and I’ve put together sensory bins, we’ve built play dough dinosaur islands, completed word searches, scavenger hunts, and other fun printables from my friend Stef, and read all sorts of dinosaur books, but we’ve never done much with fossils.

Making Fossils

 

 

Until now.

In my constant effort to make things enjoyable for the different ages my family is made up of, while keeping them together for much of our day so we continue to grow in our relationships with each other, I am always searching for new activities that we can do together.

Making dinosaur fossils was one of the best activities so far.

You only need a few simple materials, some patience, and imagination. The results are fabulous.

First, I had Trevor take the girls over to the turtle tank. We have several big rocks in there that we gathered from local creek beds. One, the rock the turtles love to perch on, is covered with shell fossils. If you don’t have a turtle tank full of fossils, you can show examples from pictures online or search for some on your next hike. You can even buy fossils inexpensively at museum shops or online.

Making Dinosaur Fossils via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

 

You’ll need:

 

Do this:

  1. Roll a ball of clay and flatten it into the bottom of your cup.
  2. Push your dinosaur into the clay deeply to create a detailed impression.
  3. Pull the toy out of the clay.
  4. Pour plaster and water in the ratios specified on the box into the cup on top of the impression.
  5. Stir the plaster and water with a craft stick until it is all mixed together.
  6. Let it sit for a few hours.
  7. Peel the cup away from the plaster and turn your fossil onto a paper plate.
  8. Leave it overnight to finish drying completely.

 

Making Dinosaur Fossils via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

The kids adored this activity. And Trevor, who includes his Obi Wan Kenobi in just about everything we do, decided to fossilize him too. I think the Obi Wan fossil is my favorite.

 

Making Fossils via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

We’ll definitely be making more fossils in the future.

What do you think YOUR kids would like to fossilize?

 

Colleen Kessler

Colleen is an explorer, tinkerer, educator, writer, creator, and a passionate advocate for the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional children. She has a B.S. in elementary education, a M.Ed. in gifted studies, is a sought-after national speaker and educational consultant, and is the founder of the popular blog and podcast Raising Lifelong Learners, as well as Raising Poppies, a community of support for parents of gifted children. She lives in northeast Ohio with her four bright and quirky kiddos, patient husband, and ever-changing collection of small reptiles, mammals, and insects.

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