Going on a bear hunt, gonna catch a big one!

Well, technically it was a fossil dig, but I have read that book sooooooo many times lately I just had to work that in somewhere.

This activity was one we did while we were house sitting a month or two ago and I've been meaning to show it off for a while. It's a fabulous thrifty activity and you can tweak it to the interests of your particular child.

The idea is to make some fossils out of salt dough, bury them and let the kids dig 'em up again.

Inspired, huh?! 

Though I must confess the original idea is not mine, I found it on another blog (of course!) but I cannot for the life of me remember which one. So if it was yours, feel free to let me know and I'll link it up.

What to do

Salt dough recipes are a dime a dozen on the net, so just find one and make a quantity of dough.

Now, take smallish pieces of your dough and press shapes onto them. 
We used toy animals.....their footprints, imprints of their scaly skin, the sides of small animals pressed straight onto the dough and made some bone shaped pieces too.

Bake them according to your recipe's instructions.

Let them cool.

At this point, you may want to seal them with something, such as mod podge or PVA glue or whatever you like. 
We didn't do this and the sand we used was a tiny bit damp, so seeing as the kids wanted to keep the shapes afterwards, we spent about an hour with a small paint brush brushing the sand off them.
My advice is seal them first.

Bury them in a sandpit. 
If it's a big one, only bury them within a certain section of it, otherwise the kids will lose interest and you'll have to help them find them all. 
Ask yourself how I know that?

Get searching!

So much fun, even the dogs wanted in on it.


  1. That looks like a lot of fun, my son LOVES digging up stuff in the sand. Thanks for sharing a great idea!

  2. A couple of budding geos...? Uncle Mike WILL be pleased.

  3. Yep, my 2 yr old is all about the sand, 5 yr old not so much but will follow his brother in to it.

    Lou, I'm always pointing out different rocks, remembering my own collection, ha!

  4. VERY cool idea. Adding this to my to do list