You’ve heard of hiding veggies in children’s meals. How about hiding lessons in children’s holidays? I’m guessing I’m not the only parent who has attempted it! Or maybe I am…

The first week of September, we were on holiday, near the Jurassic coast, in Devon.

I was itching to get back to schoolwork after the long summer break. But I also wanted us all to have an enjoyable and restful holiday.

In an attempt to make the best use of our time, and not waste a great learning opportunity, I prepared some ‘fun’ activities, related to fossils and rocks, that we could take with us.

I hunted out resources online and came across this fantastic, free, treasure trove, full of activities and ideas.

https://pstt.org.uk/resources/curriculum-materials/big-jurassic-classroom

I chose a handful of the activities I thought would be easy enough to take on holiday, laminating a few of them to make them last longer.

The activities complimented our fossil hunting walks, along the beaches at Lyme Regis and Charmouth. We collected lots of rock specimens, which we took home to experiment on, with water, vinegar, and metal skewers!

I printed some colouring sheets from here:

https://www.fossils-facts-and-finds.com/coloring_pages.html

And an activity booklet with wordsearches and dot-to-dots:

https://www.bedfordshiregeologygroup.org.uk/education.html

I also printed these ‘How a Fossil is Formed’ ammonite zig-zag books, from twinkl, for the children to make.

https://www.twinkl.co.uk/resource/how-a-fossil-is-formed-zigzag-book-t-sc-2550370

We took some fossil and rock books away with us as well.

When we got home, I discovered I was able to get this book, about Mary Anning, on Kindle, for free, through our Prime subscription:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mary-Anning-Little-People-DREAMS/dp/0711255512/

I put it up on our TV screen with a HDMI cable, and we read through it together. It was particularly good, because we had just been to Charmouth beach and museum, where there is a large model of the Ichthyosaurus that Mary Anning found.

Finally, I treated our children to this lovely puzzle from Little Crafters:

https://www.littlecraftersboxes.co.uk/blank-1/mary-anning-puzzle

My children weren’t entirely fooled by my attempts to sneak schoolwork in, but they did get stuck in with the activities anyway, especially when we were confined to our lodge because of the heavy rain!

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