End of Semester!

I’m happy to share that we finished another Fossil Lab session at Franklin College last week. The students are on their way home for a deserved break for the holidays. I had a smaller class this time than I did last fall; only two students. And it went well for everyone I believe. I saw my “teacher evaluations” from the students and I didn’t do too bad. Glad to be teaching fossil preparation techniques to give the students on campus a fun option for an elective, hands-on science class (lab).

Here are the two students with the results of their final projects for the semester. They each had a 67-million year old fossil bone from a hadrosaur specimen we call Clarence and took what they learned and spent hours & hours figuring out how to properly separate the bone from the surrounding rock matrix still adhered to it. Looks good; both did a fine job preparing their fossil.

Elliott & Mackenzie sitting behind their finished work. They used hand tools, air powered scribe tools, a sand blaster type tool and practiced some epoxy restoration techniques.
Holding their prized work. Elliott found a complete tooth in the matrix stuck to his rib fossil. We’re still working on identifying the exact piece that Mack is holding; resembles a hip bone but way too small to have come from Clarance. Maybe from a separate animal??

Also just broke out the welding machine today. Getting back into the fossil workshop after doing too many other things these past few months. Have several specimens in process that need some final attention and I just created a monster! A vicious tool to be used doing field work next summer – a broken hammer has been “improved” to become a tool of extreme danger. Take a look and you decide! Welded a piece of steel to the the claw end of the hammer then sharpened it up. We’ll see if it becomes the go to tool next year for digging and pick axing and just plain damage creating.

About as dangerous as they come.