Fremont Stones and Bones with Villa Bella School’s Second Graders
by Mary Chamberlain
“What do paleontologists do?” is the question we were asked to help answer for 50 second graders at Pueblo, Colorado’s newest elementary school on January 16, 2020.
Stones and Bones members, BLM paleontologist, Andrew Smith, as well as other members, Harold and Christina Taylor, Millie Wintz, Dorothy Cool, and Mary Chamberlain worked with the students for two hours to help answer the question. Students had the opportunity to listen to Andrew talk about his field work and how he got into paleontology.
For an hour after listening to Andrew, students were rotated through four hands-on stations to discover more about paleontology. One station was with Andrew showing tools and supplies he uses out in the field. Another station provided students an opportunity to do a fossil rubbing with crayons to discover shape and texture of fossils. One other station offered students to see insects in amber and the last station was “Fossil Bingo”—a match game using real fossils.
The two-hour session ended with students getting a copy of Geology of the Gold Belt Byway, a Junior Explorer book, a fossil from the grab bag, and an additional paper of more places to see geology and paleontology in Pueblo and Fremont Counties.