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Fossils-Facts-And-Finds Ezine, Issue #001 -- Lucys Child, Decorating with Fossils, Geology Club
October 17, 2006
Table of Contents
  • News
    1. Found: Lucy’s Baby
  • Featured Articles
    1. Hot Trends in Decorating: Fossil Art is the RAGE!
    2. Teachers & Home-schoolers: Start a Fossil Club to Psych Up Your Students!
  • Top Tips
    1. Real Fossils = Real Learning Fun!
  • What’s New…
    1. @
    2. @


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Found: Lucy’s Baby

In 1974, Donald Johansson and his team of paleontologists found a hominid fossil skeleton. It was the oldest hominid skeleton that had been found to that date. This Australopicthicus Aferensis was fondly named Lucy because the Beatles’ “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” was keeping the scientists company as they dug through the African soil.

Just this week, the paleontology community was abuzz with the news of a new find, aptly called “Lucy’s Baby.” It was the skeleton of the youngest Aferensis species that has been found to date. Read more here.

Archaeological finds are never with out some controversy. You may have heard about the controversy that surrounded the discovery and unearthing of the Tyranosaurus, Sue. The property of this dinosaur, named for the lady who first spotted her, became world news! For details of the controversy surrounding Lucy’s Baby, click on these links:

Anthropologist Challenges Species Identification

Identification of Lucy's Child

Lucy's Child Discrepancies

No matter which side of the line you fall regarding this discovery, there can be no dispute that finding the fossil remains of humans, dinosaurs or even more common and prolific sea creatures is an exciting event for the one who makes the discovery. If you’d like to learn more about rock hounding, check out this link

fossil hunting


Hot Trends in Decorating: Fossil Art is the RAGE!

I couldn’t help but listen with wonder as dealer after dealer at the recent Denver Fossil, Gem and Mineral Show reported the furious buying of large fossil specimens for Japanese homes and businesses. It seems that the Japanese are not only fascinated with fossils, they want them for art pieces.

One dealer reported that he had received an amazing figure for a reconstructed fossil fish from the Green River Formation near Kemmerer, Wyoming. The specimen had been found in a quarry, prepared by a second party, purveyed by a third and will eventually be delivered to its new Japanese home. A great deal for all parties!

Artists, too, are benefiting from the Japanese excitement over fossils. An artist who regularly uses ammonites and orthoceras in her objects d’arte creations recently told us she had been approached by a Japanese dealer who wanted to buy 50 of her art pieces as soon as she could get them made.

Americans are putting another spin on fossil art. Besides the many wonderful display items that come from Morocco, there are plates and serving bowls that will be decorating many dinner tables throughout the United States. These unique pieces add a warm earthiness to the meal; and their colors are as yummy as the culinary dishes they serve up!

Continue this earthy motif to the living room. There you’ll find coffee and end tables carved and polished from the black and white, orthoceras-filled matrix that comes from Moroccan deserts. Plaques of specimens come in all sizes and include specimens ranging from ancient trilobites and brittlestars to polished ammonites and orthoceras. Prices have a wide range, too, so watch out! If you take the time to shop around, you can find some great deals!

Recently a new craze in “permanent decorating” is also making the scene in the U.S. Concrete kitchen counters are known for their easy durability and beauty. But inlay them with fossil ammonites and you have a counter that is out of this world beautiful AND one-of-a-kind! Bathroom tiles set with orthoceras create a memory of the watery environment these ancient creatures called home.

If you are a fossil-lover and just can’t find one more empty space to add to your collection, think about these new alternatives for home décor. Who knows? You may “invent” the next new fossil decorating craze!

Want to purchase fossil décor items: carries a variety of home décor items in a range of prices to fit any budget. Use this coupon code ffaf1006 to receive 10% off any item on our website! Coupon code is valid only until October 31, 2006.


Start a Fossil Club to Psych Up Your Students!

Perhaps you’ve noticed how much kids like to collect the “cool rocks” you can find around your home or school yard. It seems like children of all ages have a natural attraction to even the simplest finds. An interesting shape or curious color can get the rock stuffed into a pocket, only to find its way onto the shelf or bedstand once it arrives at home.

This kind of REAL learning enthusiasm is only enhanced when kids can learn about why the rock has a certain color or the transformations that might have resulted in that particular shape. A geology club is a perfect way to stretch that excitement into a casual learning opportunity.

We recommend you narrow your topic to just one at a time. You could start with a Fossil Club that leads to a Rock Club that leads to a Mineral and Crystal Club. Here’s what I mean.

Fossils are FASCINATING! They can lead to all sorts of discoveries. And there are a lot of “hands-on” experiences that help kids understand about the fossilizing process, the environments that allowed for the creation of the fossils, the animal bodies that fossilized, and so on. You could easily fill a 6-week club with experiments to learn each of these concepts.

Fossils are found in particular kinds of rocks. Every interesting rock you pick up along the way is NOT a candidate for containing a fossil. That fact leads to a Rock Club. In this type of club, kids learn about different types of rocks, how they formed, how they changed, what caused the changes, and where to find them. You can include demonstrations that will have your kids learning about the composition of the Earth, its ancient formation, and the changes it is going through right now.

Some “rocks” seem to sparkle and shine in a magical way. To learn about these special rocks, you’d create a Mineral and Crystal Club. In this club, kids will learn about chemical composition, mineral shapes and color, and all the tests one goes through to identify the particular mineral or crystal. Further, a study of where to find each mineral can lead students to every corner of the globe. Curious kids will want to know why all the minerals didn’t form everywhere, so you’ll be able to share about plate tectonics, too!

There seems to be no end to the many ways one can get kids learning about the Earth! If you’d like more suggestions for how to start a club in your area, follow this link to Starting A Geology Club You’ll find suggestions for getting started, lesson plans, experiments, coloring pages…literally hundreds of ideas to create your own unique club.

And if you’re ready to start and need a great site to find affordable specimens, click through to fossilicious. They’ll help you get prices your club can afford on all the fossils and minerals your club will need to be a SUCCESS!


Top Tips

This month our Top Tip is for Teachers: Put REAL fossils in the Hands of your Students.

There are a number of real fossil species that are within even the tightest school budget. You can use these fossils for experiments, for making collections, and even for creating your own fossil dig. Because your students will be touching the real deal: fossils of animals that lived millions of years ago, their imaginations will go wild.

I once worked with a group of middle school students to expose fossil fish from the Green River Formation. These kids were a challenging group. Besides the usual challenges of the early adolescent, several of them had diagnosis of LD, ADD, and ADHD. But the casual observer would never have noticed, because these kids worked for nearly two solid hours without a break or self-imposed interruption. (You can read more about this experience here: ) Fossils and Special Education

So, add some genuine interest to your earth science or biology classes with real fossils. For lesson plans and teaching tips, click here:

Ready to buy? Follow this link:


What’s New…?

@ : Extreme Fossil Facts

These one-liners will make you a fossil genius! Here you can find out about the biggest, oldest, or longest fossils that have been found on the earth to date! Follow this link: Extreme Fossil Facts

@ : New products from the Denver Show

Along with replenishing our quickly diminishing collection of Madagascar Split ammonite pairs, we’ve added a few new special treats.

(PS: Coming Next month: A review of the Denver Show)

Dino Coprolite & Dino Bone: You’ve got it!…We bought some dinosaur poop to add to your collection! The Dino bone is not tiny, collection-sized pieces, but large, 3 to 5 inch sizes with clear evidence of the fibrous cell structure.

Mosasaur and BIG Spinosaur teeth: We found some real beauties at prices you’ll like! The mosasaur teeth are particularly nice, many are flawless. We’re really excited about the size of the spinosaur teeth; some are nearly 4 inches long!

Celestite for crystal calming: If you’re a busy person whose life could use a little peace, you’ll flip for this celestite. It’s sometimes called the Angel Stone because it brings in those protective, invisible energies that take care of us. But even if you’re not a metaphysical-type, the steely blue color of these crystals will help put you in a celestial place of quiet and calm.

Pyritized ammonites: Morocco has long delivered beautiful ammonites, but these silvery and brassy varieties are a new and unique find. We think there are as special as the types that have come from Eastern Europe and Russia for years.

Work in Progress

For those of you who have been working with us over the last several months, we’ve been saying that our books about the geologic periods were on their way. Well, now they’re getting really close to being ready for you.

Our artist has just a few more pictures to finish, the mock-ups are almost complete, and we plan to go to publication within the next month or two.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Did you ever wish you had a high traffic website? This free ebook is a must read for anyone thinking about creating a website that works..

free ebook

Written by….Claudia Mann © copyright 2006/2007 by

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