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Teaching Paleontology in the 21st Century
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Digging Dinosaurs

Author Profile
Molly Ward
,
mward@montana.edu

Museum of the Rockies

Summary

"Digging Dinosaurs" is an approximately one hour long class for children (generally grades K-5, but could be adapted and used for older kids as well). The course focuses on the process of paleontology–how do paleontologists find and excavate fossils? Students will gain an understanding of the process of paleontology and an appreciation for the importance of science in the process of paleontology.

Course URL:

Subject: Geoscience:Paleontology
Resource Type: Course Information
Grade Level: Informal
Course Size:

15-30

Course Context:

This is an introductory class for children that was created for an informal learning setting (specifically the Museum of the Rockies) but could easily be recreated in any classroom.

Course Goals:

- Students should be able to identify major steps and relative order of major steps in the process of paleontology.
- Students should be able to identify the role of fossil preparators and fossil preparation in the process of paleontology.
-Students should be able to use tools and proper techniques for fossil preparation.


How course activities and course structure help students achieve these goals:

Students achieve the above mentioned goals by participating in activities that get them thinking about concepts related to each goal. Assessment is formative and is mainly accomplished by observing the student action and participation and through asking questions throughout the class.

Assessment



Syllabus:

Digging Dinosaurs Lesson Plan (Syllabus) (Acrobat (PDF) 141kB Jun3 09)
Process of Paleontology Activity (Acrobat (PDF) 136kB Jun3 09)
Process of Paleontology List (Acrobat (PDF) 73kB Jun3 09)
Fossil Discovery Image (Acrobat (PDF) 71kB Jun3 09)
Museum Display Image (Acrobat (PDF) 69kB Jun3 09)
Process of Paleontology Images (Acrobat (PDF) 3.2MB Jun3 09)
Digging Dinosaurs Activity (Acrobat (PDF) 158kB Jun3 09)

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