Make Your Own Fossil Flip Book

How do fossils form?

Fossils are preserved bits of ancient life. When an animal or plant dies, it usually rots away, but sometimes in the exact right conditions, it can become a fossil!

In order for a plant or animal to become a fossil, it needs to be buried quickly. Most fossils come from animals and plants that died next to or in the water, and got quickly buried by sand and mud. Once buried, the soft parts of the animal usually rot away, leaving the hard bits like bones and teeth. Slowly, over a long period of time, these hard parts interact with the dirt and rock around them, and begin to turn into stone. If we’re incredibly lucky, the rocks around a fossil will start to weather away, exposing the fossil again for someone to find!

You will need:

Make Your Flipbook

Follow the written directions below or use the image gallery pictures to see each step.

Step 1: Print out the Fossil Flip Book PDF. Cut in half, along the vertical center line.

Step 2: Cut along the horizontal lines to create 12 separate pieces.

Step 3: Stack the pieces in order, with number 1 on the top of the stack and number 12 on the bottom. All pieces should be face up, so you can see the illustrations.

Step 4: Staple the stack together along the left edge. Two staples work better than one!

Step 5: Flip through your book a page at a time, to see how this dinosaur becomes a fossil!

Look Closer

Look closely at the illustrations.

  • What’s happening in each picture?
  • What’s changing between pictures?
  • What stays the same between pictures?

Try it out!

  • What would the flipbook show if you stacked the numbers backwards (with 12 on the top and 1 on the bottom)?
  • Color your flipbook to show more details.
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