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A DIY fossil? Now that’s colossal!

Northview — Nina has an ancient artifact inside her desk, where she hopes it will stay safe from being accidentally broken.

North Oakview third-grader Nina’s DIY flower fossil

Well, it’s not that ancient; she made it herself. But she guards her intricate fossil replica, made from flowers she found on the ground and in a tree on the playground, as if it was.

“At first I was going to do a daisy, or some moss, or a woodchip,” the North Oakview third-grader told a visitor. “I think this turned out pretty good.”

Teacher Jamie Wilcox often offers a Friday STEM project to her third-graders who have completed their work for the week. A recent project, as pitched by student teacher Marlie Fowler, focused on fossils, which they made by pressing their found objects into colored dough, then pouring plaster of Paris over the dough to harden.

“Their first unit is about squirrels, and one big idea (in that unit) is ‘Why do I see so many squirrels, but I don’t see a single stegosaurus?’ This was just a fun extension of when they talked about fossils.”

North Oakview third-graders, from left, Jamar, Bailee, Courtlon, Everly, Reese, Nina, Elias, Emma and Sawyer are guided by student teacher Marlie Fowler in how to make their own ‘fossils’ (courtesy)

As Nina explained — to triumphant fist pumps from both Wilcox and Fowler — “A fossil is something from long ago that we have for evidence that the thing or animal was actually alive at one time.”

Read more from Northview: 
Figuring out problems, not just learning about them
Soccer-loving Swiftie values students’ wisdom

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Morgan Jarema
Morgan Jarema
Morgan Jarema is a reporter and copy editor, covering Northview. She is a Grand Rapids native and a product of Grand Rapids Public Schools, including Brookside and West Leonard elementaries, City Middle/High School and Ottawa Hills. She found her tribe in journalism in 1997 and has never wanted to do anything but write. For 15 years she was a freelance journalist for The Grand Rapids Press, covering local schools and government, religion, business, home & garden and lifestyles. She and her husband, John, think even those without kiddos should be invested in their local schools and made to feel a part of them. Read Morgan's full bio


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