Event Description for Fossil Find



The Fossil Find event will vary from the rules printed in the Rules Manual. As with all the events in the Los Angeles County Elementary Science Olympiad, the duration will be 30 minutes. The colored pencils/crayons described in the event manual will not be needed and students will not draw fossils and place them in a grid.

Fossil Find may be organized as a station rotation event where students move from station to station with a very short stay at each station. Note that while reference notes and written resources are permitted, the rapid rotation time may influence how you prepare those notes and resources.

Students should be prepared to identify common fossils from samples, reproductions, or photos. This may include identifying the kingdom, phylum, or class. Students should be able to tell what habitat the fossil might be found in, especially aquatic or terrestrial. Students should be able to identify the geologic time period when the fossil might have been found. Students may be asked to describe the organism represented by the fossil. Students may be asked to justify their responses (tell why they think that is the correct response).

Students should understand and be prepared to describe how fossils are formed and the general types of fossils.

Fossils may include, but may not be limited to: 

  • Coelenterates, for example: horn coral 
  • Brachiopods, for example: bivalves 
  • Arthropods, for example: trilobites, eurypterids 
  • Echinodermata, for example: sea urchin, blastoid, crinoid stem 
  • Mollusca, for example: ammonites, gastropods, pelecypods, orthoceras 
  • Vertebrata, for example: fish, shark teeth, dinosaur bones 
  • Plants: including petrified wood and leaf impressions 
  • Fossilized dinosaur tracks 
  • Insects preserved in amber or fossilized 

Image from Bestcrystals.com