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Making fossils

Today we unveiled our fossils from their sea bed after waiting millions of years (or in our case, a few days) for them to solidify. We did this to learn about how fossils are made. On this table, you'll find the steps that happen to create a real fossil and what we did to mimic this process (because waiting for a real fossil takes a little bit too long...).


1. An animal dies. It falls onto a sea bed. It is pushed down by sedimentary rock for millions of years. 1. Our sea bed was made from plasticine.
We pushed a shell into the seabed to represent the animal dying and pushed down with our hands to show the pressure of sedimentary rock.
2. The animal rots away, leaving a hollow shape in the sedimentary rock. 2. We removed the shell from the plasticine sea bed.
3. Water floods into the hollow space, carrying minerals like limescale and calcium into the space. 3. We mixed water with some plaster poured it into the space left behind by the shell. 
4. The water drains but the minerals are left behind. This happens time and time again over millions of years. 4. The plaster set. 
5. The sedimentary rock is eroded away leaving the more hard-wearing fossil minerals behind. This leaves a cast fossil. 5. Our plasticine sea bed rotted away (using our fingers) and we were left with a cast of the shell we pushed in originally.


We were so impressed with our fossils and had so much fun making them. Here are some of the amazing fossils that Class 11 produced.