WEEK 5 DINOSAURS
Activity 1: Why did the dinosaurs become extinct?
Activity 2: How big were dinosaurs?
Activity 3: Make your own board game
Activity 4: Be a Fossil-hunter
Activity 5: Draw a Cartoon T-Rex
Activity 6: Spot a dinosaur in the park!
Activity 7: Walk like a dinosaur
Activity 8: What have I learnt? – Dinosaur Quiz
WHY DID THE DINOSAURS BECOME EXTINCT?
Have you ever seen a tyrannosaurus-rex roaring in your local park? Or a diplodocus paddling in your local swimming pool?
Watch this video to find out why dinosaurs aren’t around today (or at least why most dinosaurs aren’t around today – see activity 7), then try the quiz to see how much you remember.
HOW BIG WERE DINOSAURS?
Watch the video tutorial abovemade by the Greenwich Royal Observatory to find out how to make the Solar System in a box!
If you don’t have all the materials listed in the video, here are some ideas for substitutes:
- you could use blue-tak instead of plasticine
- you could use a scrunched-up ball of baking paper instead of the ball in the middle
- you could substitute the torch for a lamp if you cut a hole in the bottom of your box and hold the box above your lamp
As you are making the Solar System, talk about the different planets:
- Is this a rocky planet or a gas giant?
- Is this planet made of gas or rocks?
- Can you remember how many moons each planet has?
- How hot or cold do you think this planet is compared to Earth?
- How do you think Earth days compare to a day on another planet?
- What do you think shadows are like on each planet?
Check your answers by scrolling down to the bottom of this Royal Museums Greenwich webpage where you can find a Fact File for each planet.
Read the fact files to check your answers and see how much you know about the planets in our Solar System (and in your Solar System box).
Go to this website that shows a size chart of different dinosaurs, and how they would compare to an average human. The sizes are in feet and inches, as that’s how we normally measure humans.
Look at the height and length of each dinosaur and see if you can follow the clues below to find a different dinosaur for each numbered clue.
For example, if the clue says:
Find a dinosaur that’s twice as tall as a Gallilimus.
Look on the chart and find Gallilimus.
The clue says ‘twice as tall’ so we need to check the height, which says it is 9’ (9’ is 9 foot).
The clue says ‘twice as tall’ so we need to calculate: 9 x 2 = 18.
Now it’s time to look for a dinosaur that’s 18 feet tall….keep looking….keep looking… there!
The answer to the clue is: it’s a Tyrannosaurus Rex!
Now it’s your turn! Follow the clues to find the dinosaurs.
- Find a dinosaur that’s the same height as a Gallimimus.
- Find a dinosaur that’s the same length as a Velociraptor.
- Find a dinosaur that’s twice as long as a Ceolophysis.
- Find a dinosaur that’s twice as tall as a Pachycephalosaurus.
- Find a dinosaur that’s half as long as a Tyrannosaurus Rex.
- Find a dinosaur that’s half as long as Parasaurolophus.
- Look at the lengths of the dinosaurs. Which dinosaur do you get if you take a Troodon away from a Majungasaurus?
- Look at the heights of the dinosaurs. Which dinosaur do you get if you add a Parasurolophus and a Tyrannosaurus Rex?
How many could you find?
MAKE YOUR OWN BOARD GAME
BE A FOSSIL-HUNTER
Watch the above video from the Natural History Museum to find out how fossils are formed. After watching, see if you can explain the process of how fossils are created to someone.
Would you make a good dinosaur hunter? Take this quiz from the Natural History Museum to find out.
Next, watch this CBeebies video and make your own fossil.
Once it has dried, it’s time to be a fossil-hunter.
First, get some practice on a 360 degree fossil hunt in Charmouth on the Jurassic Coast. Go here, If you click on the screen, and move your mouse, you’ll be able to look in any direction you like. Listen carefully and you’ll get lots of tips on how to best spot a fossil.
Then get someone to hide your fossil in a rocky part of the park or garden, and see if you can find it. (Top tip: Tell them not to remember carefully where they put it, in case you get stuck)
DRAW A CARTOON T-REX
Ever wonder how paleoartisits – artists who draw dinosaurs – decide what dinosaurs would have looked like, when all they’ve got is bones and fossils? Go to this Natural History Museum website to find out, and to learn how to draw your own cartoon T-Rex.
SPOT A DINOSAUR IN THE PARK!
It’s true that most dinosaurs became extinct 65 million years ago… but some of them survived! So why haven’t you seen one? Well… the answer is that you probably have.
Have a think – which animal that you’ve seen looks most like a dinosaur?
Watch this video from the American Museum of Natural History to find out which of today’s animals evolved directly from dinosaurs.
Take this mini-quiz and see if you can remember which features dinosaurs and birds share.
- True or false, birds and dinosaurs are always larger than people? (false)
- True or false, birds and dinosaurs have ‘high-metabolisms’, which means their bodies turn food into energy really quickly. (true)
- True or false, birds and dinosaurs have feathers. (true)
- True of false, birds and dinosaurs have beaks. (false)
- True or false, birds and dinosaurs have hollow bones. (true)
- True or false, birds and dinosaurs have big brains. (true)
Now that you know that birds are modern day dinosaurs, go to your local park and see if you can spot one!
When you see a bird, watch it for a few minutes.
- Describe in detail what it looks like
- Describe how it moves
- Describe what it sounds like
This page from the RSPC tells you how to identify 5 of the most common birds in the UK. To find out more about each one, click on its picture.
Keep a record of the different birds that you found and describe in detail what each one looked and sounded like.
If you want to do more birdwatching, you could also download a Bird Identification app and take pictures of the birds you see, or listen to the bird song, to help you identify what sort of bird it is. There are lots available on Google Play and the App Store.
WALK LIKE A DINOSAUR
Go to this website and make a paper dinosaur hat, that will turn you into a Stegosaurus!
Next, watch this video where David Attenborough explains how palaeontologists think that Sophie, the Stegosaurus, might have moved.
- How do her legs move?
- How does her tail move?
- Is she fast or slow?
Wearing your hat, see if you can move like Stegosaurus!
WHAT HAVE I LEARNT?
Now that you’ve learnt so much about dinosaurs, try this quiz from the Natural History Museum to see if you can tell which ones are dinosaurs.
Draw 3 shapes (stars, circles, blobs) on a piece of paper. Write the following headings in each one for your child:
- Things I’ve learnt this week
- My favourite activity from this week and why
- What do I still want to find out?
Help your child to write something in each one, or let them fill them in and reflect on their learning.