Preparing for a Trip to the Jurassic

Going on a Trip to the Jurassic

As part of Everything Dinosaur’s summer school commitments team members have spent the day preparing for trip into the east Midlands to help a group of Key Stage two children explore fossils.  Our plan is to set up in the school an artificial beach and to populate it with various fossils from our recent digs and field work.  Most of the fossils we will be using come from marine sediments and consist of lots of invertebrates, although there is some fossilised wood and even shark teeth.  Over the last year or so, we have been involved in a number of trips to explore highly fossiliferous sediments and as a result we have plenty of fossils to use in this fossils and dinosaur workshop session.

Lots of Fossils “on hand”

A successful fossil hunt.

A successful fossil hunt.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

It is going to be a dinosaur workshop with a difference.  Having populated the beach with various fossils, we are going to challenge the children to find them.  What they find they can keep, so long as the mums, dads and teachers present are OK with this.  In addition, we will be challenging the children to help us with some fossil identification.  This will involve lots of tactile fossil handling and helping them with their reading and writing.

We have also created a range of drawing materials so that the children can take home a drawing to colour in depicting what life was like in their part of the world during the Middle Jurassic.

A “Jurassic World”

Life in the Jurassic Seas.

Life in the Jurassic Seas.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The picture we have created is a composition consisting of many of the illustrations of Jurassic marine fauna we have stored in our database.  The drawing materials reflect the sort of fossils that the children will be able to discover on our artificial beach. There will be fragments of coral, bivalve shells, including some nice examples of “devil’s toenails” – Gryphaea.  As well as the various bivalves, there are Belemnite guards to find and pieces of fossilised Ammonite shell.  We have gastropods, fish scales, crinoids (sea lilies) and lots of lovely brachiopods, especially those that superficially resemble old lamps (often referred to as lampshells).

It should be a fun dinosaur workshop with lots of fossils to collect and to identify.

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