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Found 10 results

  1. Fossiling for Children

    The fossil/rock club that I belong to was asked to be part of a craft show in Morrison, Iowa this past weekend. The president asked for assistance months ago. I did not volunteer initially because it was a 2.5 hour drive for me. But as of Thursday, help was still needed. What I didn't realize was that in addition to my physical attendance, I was to put together a project for children!!! Now this is Thursday evening and I needed to be in Iowa Saturday. The president informed me that last year 200 youngsters went through their set up. So here is my project and results: I decided to make 200 rocks full of fossils for the kids to open. Having never done this before and only 24 hours to prepare, I was a bit nervous. The following recipe was found on TFF. @caldigger made the suggestion of using dry wall powder instead of plaster of paris. I used both. Plaster of paris dried faster and was a harder finished product. Dry wall powder, on the other hand, being markedly cheaper, $9 for a bag that made me grunt carrying it to the car, and the ease of breaking open for the children, I would recommend it over plaster of paris. As for sand and the drywall powder, different proportions were tried but I felt a 1 part sand to 2 parts drywall powder worked the best. Bright and early Friday morning I collected enough loose fossils to embed in the plaster. This was my work site. Notice the bottle of cinnamon, a suggestion for coloring the fossils in the article. Save the cinnamon for what it was intended for, human consumption. I will speak on coloring the "rocks" later: And the work begins. First blobs of plaster were laid out. DO NOT PLACE ON NEWSPAPER!!!! Use wax paper. The children were quick to point out that there was lettering on their "rocks". The dye of the newspaper bled through onto the plaster. Next, liberally wet your hands with Pam cooking oil then grab a handful of fossils. Roll them around in your hands for awhile until coated lightly with the oil. Push each into the plaster. This did wonders at keeping plaster residue off of the fossils. At this point, I tried many ways to cover the fossils up. My best and quickest results came by letting the bottom plaster firm just a bit and then pouring a thinner layer of plaster over the top. Now to speak on coloring the "rocks". I tried cinnamon, I tried painting. Neither technique thrilled me. And to paint 200, not going to happen. So I was thinking of what to do when I looked down at the "filthy"bowl of water that I would rinse my brush out in. Why not dip a nice white rock into it and see what happened. It worked GREAT at instilling a fairly natural color to the stark white and one can color 200 items in about 5 minutes. I experimented with different colors in the water. The examples in the back of the picture below came out the best. I did find that to create a little 2 tone look, lightly brush the colored rock with a different color while it is still wet from it's bath and it added to it's look tremendously. Here is my first 100. And yes there are a few pink ones. I always wanted my daughter to be a "tom boy", but she grew up a "girly girl". She is now grown and on her own and we recently took her bed out of her bedroom. I found about 20 small "diamonds" in the carpet where the bed used to rest. Why not add these to some pink plaster (along with some fossils). They went like hotcakes and brought smiles when opened. And in all honesty, the children chose the pink and white samples over the browns. So in the future, maybe I would not try and mimic rock. And make orange, green, red, pink, blue, and yellow ones.
  2. Myrtle Beach hunting

    I will be on vacation later this month with family in Myrtle Beach. I would appreciate any advice for fossil hunting with kids in the area. Is it worthwhile to simply walk the beach at low tide? Are there better areas to go? I'm not looking for anyone's secret spots, but some general advice regarding where and how would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
  3. Hi friends! I'm new, I just stumbled across this forum and it's awesome content while searching for fossil localities near Charleston, South Carolina. I was hoping to get some tips on looking for shark teeth anywhere between Columbia and Charleston. I am taking a road trip from AZ with my family and thought it would be really great to stop and search for fossils along the way. I just can't seem to really pin down any nice spots to find some. I know fossil hunting grounds are a very hush-hush type of thing, but I was hoping that I could be pointed in the direction of somewhere where I might be able to take the kids and hopefully find 5 to 10 teeth. Is anyone willing to share a location that is easily accessible where we can find a few neat little fossils? Maybe somewhere like a road cut, an easily accessible creek, or even a pile of excavated dirt...? Thanks so much!
  4. Good night, Trilobite

    Lol! Ran across this on Amazon. A must have for the VERY precocious 5 year old in your house! Good Night, Trilobite is a story about Tony the trilobite and his friends, Becky the brachiopod and Bryan the bryozoan, who lived 415 million years ago on the sea floor of what would one day be the Chickasaw Nation. When a hungry cephalopod named Seth shows up, Tony and his friends find themselves in trilobite trouble! This fun and educational introduction to creatures from the Paleozoic era and the fossils they left behind includes a glossary of scientific terms, Chickasaw language vocabulary words, and a downloadable version of the Trilobite Song, written and performed by author Steve Vanlandingham.
  5. I've seen many postings over the years about paid sites to collect. Does the forum have a repository of those sites someplace? for instance- When my children were younger (1990's) we made three trips to Kemmerer,, Wy a couple of trips to Florissant, CO, a trip to U DIg in Utah, all of which I would recommend, although 20 yrs later I'm not sure how good those sites are. These trips are nice for people who are out for a (summer) vacation and want an interesting family experience. Besides, no one has to keep these sites secret. Sites out of the USA would also be of great interest. There are also many easy public collecting areas, where there are many leftovers (Venice Beach, FL), or endless supplies of material (like the 50 mile radius of Cincinnati) that could be included in the thread If there isn't already a thread (I didn't find it on a casual search) would it be of interest to the forum to list a pinned thread of sites people have used that are family friendly, or perhaps more exotic/expensive for those with more money and older children, such as some of the Nebraska ranches)? This thread could be used as a vacation planner, I apologize if this information is already in a file and I am just missing it. Many of the postings here are from that small part of the community that have the most knowledge and experience. The majority of collectors are likely more casual, but some of the young ones will be the experts of the future.
  6. THE FLIGHT OF THE PTEROSAURS

    I recently received this book as well as some home-made cookies from a friend in Louisiana (not a Forum member). It's great and although it's for children is excellent fun and very informative. A recommended gift for kids and adults too.
  7. Hi all, I was wondering if there are any professional paleontologists, geologists, physical scientists or other paleo professionals out there willing to write a review for a children's book on coprolites. Please send me a personal message if you are interested. Thanks! Lori
  8. Children and Fossils

    From the album Justin's Shark Teeth

    Action shot! Even my four year old daughter learned to spot the shark teeth, they both race each other to sort through the screen after we clear all the sand, hahaa!!
  9. Hi Guys and Gals for thefossilforum! I was just welcoming a new member in the introductions and read how he is interested in bringing his love of fossils and the adventure of the hunt to children in schools. I know that we have a member of the Forum in California who does this, but of course couldn't remember his name. There have been lots of posts on the Forum about children and adventures that members have had with their children and grandchildren, neices and nephews. But nothing really searchable on how to bring our love of fossils to a larger, young audience. I have a special interest in this as I am a substitute teacher as well as a fossil addict! Being a substitute can be difficult as the children test you. I have found that by bringing a fossil (often the jewelry I make from fossils) or fossils to schools and sharing them with the children, I can often get control of the class more quickly and have a better day teaching. With that in mind, I spent a little time doing a search of fossil sites on the web related to children and fossils. This is the list I came up with. Not comprehensive, but a nice cross section. And, I am also building my own website for beginners, but specific to SE Minnesota Bluff Country. Bev http://www.fossils-f...activities.html For Teachers Lesson Plans Worksheets Downloadable Word Search Puzzles Coloring Pages Pretty much a one stop shop for kids, fossils, activities. http://www.fossilsforkids.com/ I believe this to be the site that another Forum member hosts. Kids site, not for teachers. http://www.kidsdinos...are-fossils.php Lots of interactive games for kids that I had fun playing! This is a science site, geology, astronomy, biology, etc. http://www.neok12.com/Fossils.htm Teachers resource page. http://www.brooklynk...sils_FIN_HR.pdf Great teaching guideline pdf With interactive activities for kids http://www.scienceki...th/fossils.html For teachers, with worksheets.
  10. Hi all, Yesterday a coworker told me she would be in Chesapeake VA Friday-Sunday Dec. 23-25, 2011. She asked me if I could suggest any collecting sites less than an hour away where she could take three kids ages 6-13 for an hour or two. I told her I would do a little research. I fairly quickly found mention of a site called Chuckatuck Quarry south of Smithfield, or about 25 miles nw of Chesapeake. Apparently the site has excellent Yorktown Fm. invertebrates, althoough the vertebrates may be a bit scarce. Some of what I read seemed to imply that the site is now closed to collecting. Can any of you tell me more about this place, ie. whether collecting is currently permitted, is it kid-friendly, exact directions, contact info, etc.? Alternatively, can anyone suggest any other suitable sites less than an hour's drive from Chesapeake? It just has to be kid-friendly and have plenty of easy-to-find fossils of any kind - I'm not looking for anybody's super-secret meg site or anything. I haven't asked her this yet, but I know she's heading north on the 26th - maybe she would be amenable to stopping somewhere along the way that wouldn't be limited to an hour's drive from Chesapeake. I read that York River State Park has a fossil display, and fossil shells can be collected along the river bank nearby. Anybody know anything about that site? Thanks for any help anyone can give me. Unfortunately I only have a couple days to find something out for her. Frank
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