Reconstructing Fossil Bones

Students reconstruct an ancient fossil skeleton by puzzling together individual paper “bones”.  This activity is simple to prepare for and rich in discovery.

This activity appears in the book Adventures in Paleontology: 36 Classroom Fossil Activities by Thor A. Hansen and Irwin L. Slesnick and illustrated by D. W. Miller.

For more information on this activity, go to The Great Fossil Find at ENSI.

Imagine you have just discovered bunch of bones in limestone quarry.  You figure out the puzzle of how these bones are put together.

Materials: Scissors, tape, construction paper, glue. 

Directions: Print out drawing and cut out the various bones.

Use glue and tape to attach the “bones” to paper in a way that you imagine this ancient animal must have looked.

Hint - Don't Peek Until You've Tried


Scaphognathus crassirostris was a pterosaur that lived in Germany during the Late Jurassic. It had a wingspan of about one meter.  The German scientist, August Goldfuss, discovered these bones in 1826.  


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