Activity 5: Do at Home!

Fossil Jumble

Match up the fossils!

Parent instructions:

  • Give each kind of fossil a color, and color in the small box next to its picture.
  • Circle all the fossils of each kind that you can identify in the Fossil Jumble with its color. In nature some of the fossils we find haven't been broken, sometimes they are worn, and sometimes they are only little pieces. It can be difficult to identify the pieces, but they can also tell us some very important things.

Tip: You may not be able to identify all the fossils in the Fossil Jumble. Scientists are also unable to identify fossils at times. Try your best!


Were there any fossil shapes that were easy to match up with the pictures?

Were there any fossils that were hard to match up with the pictures?

This "Fossil Jumble" looks like many rocks that can be found right here in New York.

Extension: You can do this same activity using real rocks covered with fossils.

Main Message: The main reason for this activity is for students to see that scientists use all available data, some of which may be uncertain.

Connections: This kind of exercise is part of "Time Travel" (activity 3); you do it in real life in activity 6.


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