Where can you find whales in a desert?

Where can you find whales in a desert?

Lesson narration:
Scroll for prep
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DISCUSS:

What do you think this belongs to?

mystery-fossil

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DISCUSS:

So far, Doug has found fossil seashells and a fossil shark tooth. What other fossils do you think Doug would find in the quarry?

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DISCUSS:

Do you think habitats have changed in other parts of the world besides Illinois? How could you find out?

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Extensions

Below are ideas for extending this topic beyond the Exploration and Activity you just completed.
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Activity: Fossil Formation

This website from the Kentucky Geological Survey includes several hands-on activities that demonstrate how different types of fossils form. It includes a variation on the classic plaster and mold activity using white glue instead.

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Video

  • In this video, paleontologists in Argentina discover and transport fossils to a museum for further study. (4:19, PBS)

  • Meet Mark Rentz, a paleontologist who studies fossils in Florida. Watch this video to see him talk about finding shark and whale teeth in a Florida creek. (3:13, WGCU Curious Kids)

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Lesson narration:

Activity Prep

Print Prep

THIS LESSON WAS REVISED ON JULY 1, 2019. Here is a link to the previous version.
In this lesson, students explore the idea that the rock under our feet sometimes contains fossils, and investigate how these fossils reveal changes in habitat through time. In the activity, Fossil Dig, students use paper to create a model fossil dig. They identify traits of fossils to determine what the habitat looked like when these organisms were alive. Then they use this information to figure out where some Mystery Fossils belong in their fossil dig.

Preview activity
COVID-19 Adaptations
Students can work solo
Digital worksheets available
Students need a printout

Students at home
Each student needs: 3 stickers and printed copies of the Fossil Dig printout and the Mystery Fossils printout. Students also need the Fossil Dig Questions (printed or digital).

Exploration

10 mins

Wrap-Up

10 mins

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