This dinosaur fossil make and match activity is quick to set up! With just a few simple materials, your students can create their own fossils for lots of playful learning. What a fun project for a dinosaur-themed unit, or anytime you may be in need of an easy, mess-free activity! Once they are made, you can use the fossils again and again.
For this Dinosaur Fossil Make and Match Activity, you will need:
- small plastic dinosaur toys
- rolling pin
- cutting board or other hard, flat surface
- rolling pin (optional)
To begin, invite student to soften the clay by working with it in their hands. They can stretch and squeeze the clay for a few minutes to warm it up a bit. Next, create thick pancakes with the air dry clay. A thickness of at least 1/4 inch works best. Once they have created a few of these pancakes, the fossils are ready to be formed.
While the air dry clay is still soft, students can select a plastic dinosaur toy to create their fossil. Gently press the toy into the air dry clay to create the imprint. Your students may want to experiment by making some footprint fossils and others that include the entire side of the dinosaur’s body.
A few of our dinosaurs went for a walk along the air dry clay and left several footprints. Some even left a tail print on the clay! Once all the fossils have been formed, set them aside to dry overnight.
Now it’s time to play junior paleontologist! Invite your students to try to match the dinosaur to the appropriate fossil! Your student may need to pay attention to details within the fossil to solve the puzzle, such as the number of toes, or the shape of the neck.
This would be a great activity center for a dinosaur themed unit! For a simple Math exercise, students can practice counting how many footprints are on each fossil.