This term Year 2 have been learning all about Mary Anning and her amazing fossil discoveries. We went on a 360degree virtual dig in Lyme Regis, learning all about fossils and where to find them. We even had a go ourselves in our 'beach' trays. We could dig for fossils and identify them, finding interesting curly ammonites or imprints from shells or small creatures.
Once we had discovered fossils and what they taught us, we looked at Mary Anning. We talked about and researched who she was and what she discovered. We watched a re-enactment video of her life and saw some of the struggles she faced in Victorian England. We built a timeline of the main events in Mary's life and discovered how she only became famous after she died. We discussed where Mary fitted on our class timeline, featuring other topics we have looked at, and more recent events, such as the Great Fire of London, the first moon landing, Nelson Mandela and Lockdown 2020.
To learn more about Mary Anning's timeline, we talked about the different stages of her life and some of the main events, such as finding the Ichthyosaur fossil in 1811 and selling it for as little as £25. Year 2 created their own 'human timeline' video to show what they had learnt. Well done Year 2! Such great acting talents! The video is available for parents/carers on Seesaw class journal.
Year 2 went on to look at how the processes for finding fossils has changed over the years. We looked at traditional methods alongside more modern technologies and innovations. Did you know they now have electric chisels that can pick out even the finest fossils without breaking them? Well done year 2 for identifying similarities and differences between 1811 and now! I wonder which Mary Anning would have preferred?
Our final task in history was to look at how we, and historians, find out about the past. We watched some interesting videos and discussed all sorts of sources of historical evidence. We talked about books, online sources, old newspapers, old posters and flyers and even old journals or diaries kept by people in the past. We also said how talking to the older generation can be a great source of information. We decided though, one of the best sources of information is that of old artefacts. We discussed what artefacts Mary Anning discovered. Fossils!
After looking at plenty of examples, Year 2 had lots of fun and made their own coffee salt dough fossil shapes and imprints using a variety of different tools and objects to represent something from the past, such as a creatures shell, skull or scaly skin. Well done Year 2 for giving us a glimpse into history!