Primary Science Workshops

Primary school science workshops with a WOW!

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It seems that children and adults can't get enough of fossils and this investigative workshop makes the fossils the stars and puts them right in the hands of your pupils to look at up close.

 

Using velvet lined presentation boxes with a series of rare and expensive fossils, a powerful 400 x computer microscope and a detailed presentation about how fossils are formed, pupils learn in detail about the creatures that formed them tens of thousands and sometimes millions of years ago.

 

They then move on to an investigation focusing on the real skills used by professional paleontologists, which involves counting, weighing, sorting and measuring fossils according to specific categories.

 

In addition, we are currently developing a rock identification task similar to that featured in the old curriculum as a bolt on extra to enrich the experience even more.  If you would like to know about the progress of this additional task and when it will be ready, please contact us here.

FOSSILS

(as part of Y3 ROCKS topic, also incl. rock identification)

LEARN HOW FOSSILS ARE FORMED, HANDLE A REAL MAMMOTH'S TOOTH AND OTHER RARE FOSSILS  AND BE FOSSIL-FINDING SCIENTISTS IN THIS HANDS-ON FUN WORKSHOP

ACTIVITIES IN THE FULL DAY VERSION OF THIS WORKSHOP:

(This can be for one class, several classes in turn, or choose one activity as part of a multi science day with other classes)

1. 'ALL ABOUT FOSSILS' PRESENTATION

After the presentation has set the scene it is now time for the puils to get down to their own investigations by using the skills of professional paleontologists.

 

This is in the form of four different sand boxes which mimic the following key research skills:

1) Counting mass samples (to assess species numbers in a given location)

2) Weighing samples (to assess average weight of a species)

3) Measuring length (to assess physical aspects such as gender and maturity)

4) Species classification (to recognise different species and sub-species)

 

This is conducted in groups but, apart from help where needed, it is carried out entirely independently by the pupils in an excellent example of learning via investigation.

2. 'FOSSIL HUNTERS' FOSSIL SORTING  TASK

The workshop starts with a detailed presentation about how fossils are made, including the story of great fossil hunters such as Mary Anning and a tour through the timeline of geological periods throughout the lifespan of the Earth.  

 

This is brought to life with real, rare and expensive fossils that are only normally available in museums for pupils to either come up and handle or pass round, such as a Woolly Mammoth tooth, a Megaladon (giant Shark) tooth and other delights such as a Giant Elk leg bone and a 1 million year old Whale vertebrae.

 

This also includes a range of split, polished ammonites which show their internal structure and a range of beautiful agate crystals in preparation for the rocks part of this workshop which is currently in development.

 

But that's not all, because before we finish we get even closer to the fossils with our 400x computer microscope to see one of the most amazing objects, a 10,000 year old insect trapped along with its final breath in a rare piece of Copal, which is a hardened tree sap similar to amber.

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THIS SCIENCE WORKSHOP

AT A GLANCE

 

Workshop duration:

A full day or a single 1 hr session

as part of a multi science day

 

For these year groups as per the 2014 National Curriculum:

Y3 (or Y6 as part of their Evolution and Inheritance topic - see separate page here)

 

NC objectives covered:

Compare and group together different kinds of rocks on the basis of their appearance and simple physical properties / describe in simple terms how fossils are formed when things that have lived are trapped within rock

+ MUCH MORE!

IMG_0634 A box of amazing rare polished fossils in our Y3 fossils workshop Looking at a 10,000 year old insect's last breath in our fossils workshop Cool and rare fossils iin our Y3 fossils workshop Tables set up for our fossils investigation task in our Y3 fossils primary science workshop Sorting fossils in our primary science fossils workshop Measuring fossils in our Y3 fossils primary science workshop Handling a real trilobite in our fossils primary science workshop Measuring fossils in our Y3 fossils primary science workshop Sorting fossils in our Y3 fossils primary science workshop

This is an additional sorting station during the fossils task, where pupils identify and sort different minerals using special illuminated glasses and identification charts.  It links in really well with any work you are doing on rock formation and the three different types of rock; sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic.

3. ROCK MINERALS IDENTIFICATION

(DELIVERED AS PART OF THE ABOVE FOSSIL TASK)

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Weighing Trilobites in our Y3 fossils primary science workshop Y3 rocks workshop Rock glasses Y3 rocks workshop Rock glasses Y3 rocks workshop