Damien had to do his first BIG science project this year. It’s worth 200 points. I took some pictures while he was busy with it. He decided to do a project on fossils- what they are, how they’re formed, what circumstances are necessary to get a complete skeleton, what happens if the dead animal is disturbed or scavenged, etc.
He decided to do a set of dioramas depicting the different circumstances and got to planning it. He waned to use plastic dinosaurs and plastic skeletons that come in pieces- and make his own fossils so it took us a while to find the “right” ones in the different shops.
We bought this “Junior Tradesman” toy cement to use as the rock or mud, plastic plants and trees from pet shops and toy stores, and he went to look for rocks in the storm water drain. I found the tinfoil baking pans in Pick ‘n Pay and they were the perfect size to hold the diorama scenes he had in mind. Even the plants we found were carefully selected in order to look like they were pre-historic for the dead and scavenged dinosaur diorama scenes. The more “modern” trees and grasses were used in the fossil scenes.
So its a diorama with a dead dino and some scavengers and predatory dinosaurs. Then there’s a partial skeleton with scavengers running off with the bones. Then he did a fossil of an incomplete skeleton. And he did a full skeltal fossil- since these are very rare. The cement took about two days to dry- then he added chisel marks to the two excavated fossil scenes with a miniature screwdriver from my toolkit.
He also made a poster with a proper scientific description of the process and the different ways fossils can be formed. He also has two fossils of his own that will form part of his display when he presents it. He’s pleased with his work- I sincerely hope his teachers are too…