Title: Dry Bones and Other Fossils
Author: Gary E. and Mary M. Parker
Major Themes: Creation, Fossils, History, Science
Synopsis: A father teaches his children about what fossils are and how they were formed in this wonderful picture book!
Some books just sit on the shelf for years without being touched—and it’s a shame, because they are great books! Dry Bones and Other Fossils is one of those books in our house. Because it’s a large-format book, I put it on the top shelf, up near the ceiling, where there was room to store it—but that meant that no one saw it for a long time! So, it was good when recently we started a science course that suggested reading this book and other similar ones, which we also had. I pulled them off the shelf and laid them in a stack in the living room, and my younger children spent a lot of time looking through them. We read all of Dry Bones together, and I enjoyed going through it again.
Dry Bones is laid out in question-and-answer format. In each of its six chapters, one of the Parker children asks his or her father questions about fossils, and Dad answers them. They visit a Creation museum and go on a fossil-hunting expedition, and as we go along with them, we learn a lot, too!
Chapter 1 talks about what fossils are and the different ways they are formed. It discusses why Noah’s Flood had to happen, and ends with the hope we have in Christ. Chapter 2 talks about what sorts of things were fossilized—many different plants and sea creatures as well as larger animals. This chapter, too, ends with good news! In chapter 3, Dr. Parker takes his daughter on two different digs, looking for fossils, and they discuss why fossils tend to be grouped the way they are. There is even an experiment for children to perform to learn about why this happens. Chapter 4 talks about how long it takes for fossils to form, and also how geological formations were made. In chapter 5, Dr. Parker and his son discuss whether fossils prove creation or evolution. Chapter 6 gives some tips for collecting fossils.
If someone is interested in fossils, Dry Bones is a great starting point. Children who are curious about where fossils came from, or how we know what we know about dinosaurs, will find this book quite interesting. It’s also a good education in the difference between creation and evolution.
Read Aloud—Ages 5 – 8, 8 – 12
Reading Independently—Ages 8 – 12, 10 – 12, 12 – 15