All about dinosaurs, fossils and prehistoric animals by Everything Dinosaur team members.

Everything Dinosaur team members working in schools, helping museums and other educational bodies. Our work with and in schools.

9 03, 2018

Working to Honour Mary Anning and Mary Leakey

By | March 9th, 2018|Dinosaur Fans, Educational Activities, Everything Dinosaur News and Updates, Famous Figures, Main Page, Press Releases, Teaching|0 Comments

Everything Dinosaur Helping to Honour Female Scientists

With International Women’s Day having been very much in the news this week, Everything Dinosaur is taking this opportunity to honour two female pioneers in the Earth sciences, both called Mary.  Today, March 9th, is the anniversary of the death of Mary Anning, the famous amateur fossil collector from Dorset who did much to bring the amazing geology of that part of the coast of southern England to the world’s attention.  It is only in the last few decades that her contribution to the nascent science of palaeontology has begun to be recognised.  As part of our continuing work in schools, we have developed a lesson plan based around researching the life of Mary Anning for Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 pupils.

Everything Dinosaur’s Non-chronological Report Focused on Mary Anning

Mary Anning Non-chronological report.

A non-chronological report exercise based on the life and work of Mary Anning.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

A Non-chronological Report Focused on Mary Anning

A non-chronological report is a non-fiction report that is not written in time order.  Usually written in the third person, these reports help children to practice structuring texts and working with a variety of writing styles.  They involve a planning phase in which the compiler has to research the subject area and to decide what to include or discard.   It helps children to evaluate sources of information, encourages cross-checking of references and provides the opportunity for the teacher to check learning.  Everything Dinosaur’s lesson plan includes a template for the creation of a non-chronological report focused on the life and work of Mary Anning.

Mary Anning Honoured in a Google Doodle

Google celebrates the life and work of Mary Anning.

Google pays tribute to Mary Anning (1799-1847).

Picture Credit: Google/Everything Dinosaur

Mary Douglas Leakey (1913-1996)

The British palaeoanthropologist Mary Leakey, who along with her husband Louis, did much to improve our understanding of the evolution of humankind has also been the subject of a Google doodle.  Everything Dinosaur is working towards honouring the work of this ground-breaking scientists by having a blue plaque erected at her childhood home in London.  We shall update blog readers with regards to our progress in the near future.

A Google Doodle Honouring the Work of Mary Leakey

Mary Leakey honoured by Google.

Celebrating the role of women in science.

Picture Credit: Google/Everything Dinosaur

To read more about the life and work of the remarkable Mary Leakey: Celebrating the Role of Women in Science – Mary Douglas Leakey

7 03, 2018

Dinosaurs A Year 1 Art Project

By | March 7th, 2018|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal Drawings, Dinosaur Fans, Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Year 1 Art Project Dinosaurs

Whilst searching through our extensive archives, we came across a photograph taken during one of our many visits to schools to conduct dinosaur and fossil themed workshops.  The children in a Year 1 class at Wellgate Primary have used prehistoric animal drawings to help inspire them in their art classes.  Various dinosaur drawings were used to help the children gain an appreciation of perspective and to learn about the influence of shading on the appearance of a drawing.  How very creative!

Dinosaurs Inspire a Year 1 Art Class

Dinosaur drawings inspire Year 1.

Super dinosaur drawings by a Year 1 class.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur/Wellgate Primary

Black and White Illustrations

The teacher instructed the children to only use pencil to shade in their drawings and not to add anything else to their illustrations.  This display formed part of an extensive collage that highlighted various painting and drawing styles, all focused on the theme of fossils and prehistoric animals.  Our dinosaur and fossil expert who visited the school to conduct a workshop, took the picture to demonstrate the creative approach to the scheme of work adopted by the teaching team with its cross-curricular touch points clearly evident.

It looks like we have some budding future palaeoartists, all the various pieces of art made a fantastic display.

28 02, 2018

Year 4 Recreate the Age of Dinosaurs

By | February 28th, 2018|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Dinosaur Landscapes Created by Year 4 Children

The children in Year 4 at Langley Hall Primary Academy have begun their topic for the second half of the Spring Term.  The four classes are studying dinosaurs, fossils and life in the past.  The enthusiastic young scientists have been creating mini dinosaur worlds depicting prehistoric scenes and what a fantastic display of dinosaur dioramas they make!

Children in Year 4 at Langley Hall Primary Academy Have Made Mini Dinosaur Dioramas

Dinosaur landscapes on display.

A collection of dinosaur dioramas created by children in Year 4 at Langley Hall Primary Academy.

Picture Credit: Langley Hall Primary Academy/Everything Dinosaur

The four classes have been named after famous artists.  There is Matisse, Degas, Klee and O’Keeffe classes, clearly the children have been inspired by these artists as they made their very own prehistoric scenes.

A Range of Materials Have Been Used to Create the Prehistoric Landscapes

"Jurassic World" created by Year 4 children.

Dinosaur dioramas created by children in Year 4 at Langley Hall Primary Academy.

Picture Credit: Langley Hall Primary Academy/Everything Dinosaur

Using Different Materials to Create Prehistoric Scenes

Lots of different materials have been used to create prehistoric scenes.  For example, some of the children made plants out of pieces of coloured tissue paper, whilst one pupil collected moss to provide flora for their dinosaur diorama.  The prehistoric animal models have plenty of different textures to explore, some children used small pieces of gravel in their scenes, whilst one innovative young scientists used couscous to make a sand effect.  Can you spot the chicken egg in the photograph below?  During the workshops that Everything Dinosaur conducted with the children over the course of a day, the pupils discovered that chickens are dinosaurs (avian dinosaurs).

Can You Find the Dinosaur Egg?

Year 4 children create prehistoric scenes.

Dinosaur worlds created by children in Year 4 at Langley Hall Primary Academy.

Picture Credit: Langley Hall Primary Academy/Everything Dinosaur

Georgia O’Keeffe and the Ghost Ranch Location

One of the Year 4 classes is named after Georgia O’Keeffe.  Georgia O’Keeffe was an American painter, best-known for her modernist approach to her subject matter.  Many of her paintings feature the atmospheric landscapes of the Ghost Ranch region of New Mexico.  The sandstones, siltstones and mudstones of this region date from the Triassic geological period and Ghost Ranch is famous for its dinosaur fossils.  Fossils of freshwater Coelacanths are also associated with the region (Chinle Formation).  Our dinosaur expert challenged the children to research the story of the Coelacanth and its rediscovery as part of several extension activities that were suggested during the workshops.

Ancient Rocks Exposed at the Ghost Ranch Location

Ghost Ranch Formation

Famous Dinosaur Fossil Location

Picture Credit: S. Nesbitt

A Variety of Ecosystems and Habitats

Dinosaurs as a term topic permits lots of cross-curricular activities.  Everything Dinosaur provided some numeracy-based as well as literacy-based extension activities and the dioramas can be used to help explore and reinforce learning about food chains and different habitats.  For instance, in the prehistoric scene (below), the Year 4 pupil has used a range of materials to depict different environments.  They have even included some aquatic animals in their prehistoric scene.   Could add a drawing of a Coelacanth to their diorama?

A Prehistoric Scene Using Various Materials to Create Different Habitats

A dinosaur world in a shoe box.

Prehistoric landscapes created by children in Year 4 at Langley Hall Primary Academy.

Picture Credit: Picture Credit: Langley Hall Primary Academy/Everything Dinosaur

19 02, 2018

Dinosaur Poems

By | February 19th, 2018|Dinosaur Fans, Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

A Poem About Parasaurolophus

Whilst delivering a dinosaur and fossil workshop with a Year 1 class, we were asked to help inspire the children by providing some inspirational poems about prehistoric animals. The class had been looking at poetry and its rhythmic qualities, writing poems about animals that lived close to the Poles when they were studying “life in the freezer” during the first part of the Spring Term. The teacher wanted to reintroduce this exercise, but this time to tie it in with the topic for the remainder of the Spring Term – dinosaurs.

A Poem About Parasaurolophus

Parasaurolophus poem.

A poem about the Hadrosaur Parasaurolophus.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Fortunately, the Everything Dinosaur fossil expert had spotted numerous dinosaur and fossil themed poems during his many school visits and he was able to share some of these resources with the teaching team. Our team member had even come across a short piece of prose dedicated to the Late Cretaceous duck-billed dinosaur Parasaurolophus, a plant-eater with a bizarre head crest.

The Duck-billed Dinosaur Parasaurolophus

Mojo Parasaurolophus dinosaurs.

The Mojo Parasaurolophus dinosaur models (biped and quadruped).  Note the bizarre head crest.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Poetic Parasaurolophus

The role the crest played is debated by palaeontologists. It may have had a flap of skin, attaching the crest to the back of the neck and this might have been brightly coloured, allowing the crest to be used as an effective device for visual communication. The crest itself, could have played a role in signalling, perhaps its size and length demonstrated maturity or fitness for breeding. The dinosaur’s nostrils were connected to the crest by a series of complicated hollow tubes. Some palaeontologists have speculated that the crest could have acted as an amplifier or resonating device giving these dinosaurs very distinctive calls.

Whatever the purpose of that head crest, it was good to find a poem about a “tooting” Parasaurolophus!

26 01, 2018

Dinosaur Workshops at Green End Primary

By | January 26th, 2018|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

1B and 1EN Classes at Green End Primary Study Dinosaurs

It was an exciting end to the week for the children in Year 1 at Green End Primary (M19, Manchester), as the school was visited by a team member from Everything Dinosaur.  The children in 1B and 1EN have started to learn all about dinosaurs, fossils and life in the past and Everything Dinosaur was invited in to help launch this challenging term topic.  Two workshops were conducted with the enthusiastic, young dinosaur fans over the course of a morning, one for each of the classes.  During a short briefing with the teachers, our proposed lesson plan was reviewed and steps were taken to ensure that our dinosaur expert covered key points that the teaching team wanted to emphasise.  As well as acting as a provocation for the topic, the teachers were keen to reinforce learning about food chains and as Mary Anning was going to be studied in class, our dinosaur expert was able to adjust his lesson plan to accommodate this learning need.

A Beautiful Dinosaur Display in One of the Year 1 Classrooms

Year 1 dinosaur display.

Year 1 children at Green End Primary have created a wonderful dinosaur display.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur/Green End Primary

Making Salt Dough Fossils

As part of a wide range of challenging activities, the children had been making their own salt dough fossils.  These fossils were on display in the sand tray and our dinosaur expert was invited to examine the children’s work.

Children in Year 1 Make Salt Dough Fossils

Key Stage 1 children make salt dough fossils.

Salt dough fossils created by Year 1 children (class 1EN and 1B).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur/Green End Primary


During the workshop, the Year 1 children were given the chance to handle some real fossils and to learn how fossils form.  The ammonite fossils proved to be very popular, especially the very large ones.  These fossils are typical of the “sea shells on the sea shore”, that Mary Anning collected.  We included a tongue twister all about Mary Anning with the additional teaching resources that our dinosaur expert provided.

As part of our work in schools, we encourage the teaching team to take lots of photographs of the children during the workshops.  These photographs are very helpful when it comes to recall and recounting activities after the workshop has been concluded.  Can the children, simply by looking at a photograph, recall key points from that part of the lesson?  We recommend the children are asked without prompting initially, teachers are often surprised by the amount of information that the children have retained.

A Dinosaur Themed Display in One of the Year 1 Classrooms

A Year 1 dinosaur display.

A horned dinosaur is at the centre of this Year 1 dinosaur display.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur/Green End Primary

One of the teachers promised to send in a picture of some of the children’s work, we look forward to seeing the results of the research conducted by the Year 1 classes.

22 01, 2018

Reception at Egerton Primary Discover Dinosaurs

By | January 22nd, 2018|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Dinosaurs and Fossils at Egerton Primary School

The children in the Reception class at Egerton Primary School, (Knutsford, Cheshire) were visited by Everything Dinosaur, with “Dinosaur Mike” delivering a dinosaur and fossil workshop to help enthuse the Foundation Stage 2 children as they learn about fossils and life in the past.  The spacious and well-appointed school hall reverberated with the sound of stomping armoured dinosaurs and ammonites catching fish.  During the workshop, our dinosaur expert set the children a special challenge, could they design their very own dinosaur and label parts of the body?

The Reception Class at Egerton Primary School Sent Dinosaur Letters and Drawings

'Reception class letters and dinosaur drawings.

Dinosaur letters and drawings from the Reception class at Egerton Primary School.

Picture Credit: Egerton Primary School/Everything Dinosaur

Taking Up a Dinosaur Drawing Challenge

With the help and support of the enthusiastic teaching team, the children were keen to take up Everything Dinosaur’s challenge and sure enough, we received at our offices, a set of super prehistoric animal drawings and dinosaur themed letters from the children.

Long-necked Dinosaur Drawings from Foundation Stage 2

Long-necked dinosaur drawings from a Reception class.

Super Sauropod drawings from Egerton Primary School (Reception class).

Picture Credit: Egerton Primary School/Everything Dinosaur

As part of our proposed extension activity, we challenged the Reception class to think up suitable names for their very own dinosaur designs.  During the morning visit, our dinosaur expert met a budding, young scientist called Maya and he explained to her and her classmates that there already was a dinosaur called Maiasaura (May-ah-sore-ah).  Maya had a name very similar to a Cretaceous, plant-eating dinosaur.  When back in the office, “Dinosaur Mike” emailed over a Maiasaura fact sheet and scale drawing of Maiasaura to help inspire the children with their own dinosaur designs.

We received some beautiful drawings and some lovely labelled dinosaurs.  Several children wrote a short thank you note to our dinosaur expert.  Wonderful evidence of gaining confidence with writing along with finger spacing of words being demonstrated and some basic grammar shown too!

A Dinosaur Themed Letter Writing Exercise (Egerton Primary School – Reception Class)

Dinosaur themed letter (FS2).

A letter to “Dinosaur Mike” from Reception class children at Egerton Primary School.

Picture Credit: Egerton Primary School/Everything Dinosaur

Letter Writing Exercise

A simple letter writing exercise such as the dinosaur thank you notes, can help children gain confidence and assists in the development of hand-eye co-ordination and fine motor skills.  Our thanks to all the children and the teachers in the Reception class at Egerton Primary, we have posted some of the children’s letters and drawings onto our warehouse wall.

20 01, 2018

School Prepares for Dinosaur Workshops

By | January 20th, 2018|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Hanging Heaton Primary Prepares for Dinosaur Term Topic

Pupils and staff at Hanging Heaton CE (VC) Junior and Infant School (near Dewsbury, West Yorkshire), have been busy preparing their classrooms for the start of the special Spring Term topic – dinosaurs.  Children in class 1 and class 2, comprising the Reception and Key Stage 1 cohorts at the school, will be learning all about dinosaurs, fossils and prehistoric animals for the rest of this term.  To help kick-start the topic, Everything Dinosaur was invited into the school to provide a provocation in the form of a dinosaur workshop to help enthuse the children.

Class 1 (Reception and Year 1) Have Prepared a Palaeontology Lab Display

The FS2/Year 1 class have a palaeontology lab.

The FS2/Year 1 class have a palaeontology laboratory.

Picture Credit: Hanging Heaton CE (VC) Junior and Infant School/Everything Dinosaur

Tidy and Spacious Classrooms

Our dinosaur expert had the opportunity to see the classrooms prior to starting the morning of dinosaur and fossil themed workshops.  The classrooms were tidy and spacious and the dedicated teachers, with the support of the learning support assistants had prepared a number of display boards to showcase the children’s work as they study dinosaurs.  The children in the mixed class of Reception and Year 1 are going to have a palaeontology laboratory in the corner of their classroom.  Perhaps, some of the extension activities we proposed, such as creating a prehistoric animal might end up being put up on the display board.

Class 2 (A Mixed Year 1 and Year 2 Class) Ready for the Dinosaurs Term Topic

A Key Stage 1 term topic display board - Dinosaurs!

Year 1/2 classroom ready for the dinosaurs term topic.

Picture Credit: Hanging Heaton CE (VC) Junior and Infant School/Everything Dinosaur

For further information about Everything Dinosaur’s work in schools and to request a quotation: Contact Everything Dinosaur, Request a Quotation

Questions about Dinosaurs

The children demonstrated some amazing pre-knowledge, confidently talking about the largest dinosaurs and explaining the differences between meat-eaters and plant-eaters.  They also asked lots of questions about different types of prehistoric animals.  One little boy (George), wanted to know what sort of dinosaurs hunted Styracosaurus.  Our dinosaur expert was able to explain that when Styracosaurus (a horned dinosaur), roamed North America in the Late Cretaceous, there were several types of Tyrannosaur and other predators that might have considered this very spiky reptile as dinner.

A Drawing of the Horned Dinosaur Styracosaurus (S.albertensis)

Styracosaurus illustrated.

A drawing of the horned dinosaur Styracosaurus.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Additional Resources and Activities

Prior to the two workshops, our dinosaur expert had a short meeting with the teaching lead for the term topic to ensure that learning objectives would be incorporated into the sessions.  In addition, the Everything Dinosaur team member was able to provide a number of additional teaching resources to support the school’s scheme of work, including a dinosaur footprint measuring exercise, a motor skills test linked to writing for the Reception children and a dinosaur themed geography exercise to help the Key Stage 1 children learn about the continents.

We look forward to seeing pictures of the classroom display boards filled up with examples of the children’s dinosaur and fossil themed learning.

12 12, 2017

Dinosaur Drawing and Letter

By | December 12th, 2017|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Dinosaur Drawing and Thank You Letter

Our thanks to Dionne in Year 5 who sent Everything Dinosaur a lovely thank you letter accompanied by a dinosaur drawing after we visited her school recently.  Dionne wrote to say that “today was extraordinary” and she really enjoyed holding all the fossils.

Drawing and Thank You Letter Received by Everything Dinosaur

Dinosaur letter and drawing.

Dinosaur letter and drawing sent in by Dionne in Year 5.

Picture Credit: Dionne (Year 5)

Dinosaur Workshop in School

Everything Dinosaur had been invited into Dionne’s school to work with the class of Year 5 children for a morning delivering a dinosaur workshop in school.  One of a number of extension activities that arose over the course of the morning was to have the children write thank you letters to us.  We duly received an amazing bundle of letters from the children, lots of them had dinosaur drawings too.

Our thanks to all the children who sent letters into our offices, we have enjoyed reading them and we have even posted up some of the pictures on the wall of our warehouse.

15 11, 2017

Dinosaur Letters – Answering Questions

By | November 15th, 2017|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Dinosaur Letters from Streethouse Primary

Our thanks to the Year 5/6 class at Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School (West Yorkshire), for sending in some super dinosaur letters and some amazingly colourful prehistoric animal posters.  We set this Key Stage 2 class a series of extension exercises (hope the children have enjoyed researching the Coelacanth), one of the extensions involved writing a thank you letter and sending them into our office.  We have received a collection of wonderful dinosaur-themed correspondence.

Dinosaur Letters Sent by Schoolchildren

Prehistoric animal themed letters.

A collection of correspondence from Year 5/6 pupils.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

Answering Questions

Violet wanted to know if we could name a dinosaur, what would we call it?  That is a very good question, given that Violet lives in Yorkshire and that numerous dinosaur fossils have been found in that part of the world, if we were lucky enough to find a new dinosaur in northern England, we might have to name it “Yorkshiresaurus”.

Violet’s Letter

Dinosaur thank you letter.

A thank you letter from Violet.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

Jack explained in his letter that Tyrannosaurus rex could have been a hunter as well as a scavenger.  Kelsey asked if drift wood a fossil?  Drift wood that you find on the beach is not a fossil, but if it gets buried in the sand then it can be fossilised.  At Everything Dinosaur, we have lots of fossils of plants and trees, the oldest of which are around 360 million years old.  Laura wrote to say that she enjoyed holding the fossils and learning about bones.

Archie’s Very Colourful Prehistoric Animal Drawings

Colourful dinosaurs.

We received lots of colourful dinosaurs from Year 5/6.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

Kai wanted to know what was the fiercest dinosaur?  That, is quite a difficult question to answer.  The meat-eating dinosaurs belong to a group called the Theropoda, the big carnivores were very dangerous, but some of the smaller, carnivorous dinosaurs, if they were around today, would probably have wanted to add Year 5/6 pupils to their diet.  Perhaps the children can look up dinosaurs such as Saurornitholestes and Atrociraptor and produce a poster with lots of dinosaur facts.  Our thanks to Kaya for including a picture of a marine reptile in the thank you letter that we received.  Charlie sent us a beautiful spotted long-necked dinosaur and described the morning of activities as “awesome”, whilst Cameron enjoyed learning about Megalodon and Evie wanted us to come back and visit the class again.

Tyler and His Thank You Letter

Dinosaur letter

Stegosaurus featured in a number of the children’s letters.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

Amazing Posters and Letters Sent in by Year 5/6

Beautiful dinosaur posters.

Amazing dinosaur posters from Year 5/6.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

A number of the children asked what was our favourite dinosaur?  We have been recently working on a really odd dinosaur called Sciurumimus, which means “squirrel mimic” as when this dinosaur was young, it had a bushy tail just like a squirrel.

Great Writing from the Children Including this Example from Jayden

Thank you letter from Jayden.

A thank you letter from Jayden.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

Wonderful Examples of Cursive Writing on Display

Year 5 and Year 6 children and their letters to Everything Dinosaur

Cursive writing on display from Year 5/6.

Picture Credit: Streethouse Junior, Infants and Nursery School

“Dinosaur Mike” who had visited the school to conduct the morning workshop with the class, commented:

“I want to say a big thank you to all the children in Year 5/6 at Streethouse Primary.  My colleagues and I enjoyed looking at the posters and reading the letters that were sent in.  Some wonderful hand-writing and great grammar.  Congratulations to you all!”

11 11, 2017

Why Do Asteroids Always Land in Craters? Lesson Plan Idea

By | November 11th, 2017|Educational Activities, Main Page, Teaching|0 Comments

Why Do Asteroids Always Land in Craters?  A Lesson Plan

Team members at Everything Dinosaur have been busy preparing another lesson plan idea linked to the concept of “working scientifically” when it comes to delivering teaching outcomes related to the science elements of the national curriculum for England.  The lesson is aimed at both Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 students and asks the question “Why do asteroids always land in craters”?

The Lesson Plan with Teaching Notes for Key Stage 1

Why do asteroids....? Lesson plan and teaching notes.

PDF download of teaching notes/lesson plan is available from Everything Dinosaur.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Linking to the Dinosaur Extinction Event as well as Space Modules

The dinosaur extinction is linked to a large impact event, in this lesson plan our aim is to encourage the children to work scientifically, experience and observe phenomena, devise and complete simple comparative tests, communicate ideas, observe closely and to use simple equipment to find answers.  This lesson plan relates to both the “dinosaurs” and the “space” term topic.  It should also help young minds to explore everyday materials and describe the simple physical properties of those materials.  One of the factors involved in the extinction event at the end of the Age of Dinosaurs involved an extra-terrestrial object crashing into our planet, so teachers can tie in extinction and the causes of extinction to an extension activity involving the class having to work scientifically to explore what happens when objects fall to Earth.

Two types of lesson plans have been developed, the lesson plan with accompanying teaching notes aimed at Upper Key Stage 2 deals with issues such as animals and their habitats, natural selection, evolution and introduces the idea of the force of gravity.

Essentially, to test this idea of asteroids always landing in craters, the children would have to develop an experiment whereby they drop objects into a substrate and record what happens.

Suggested Resources to be Used to Test the Hypothesis

"Why do asteroids always land in craters?" Suggested resources.

Resources suggested for the “why do asteroids always land in craters?” A lesson plan.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Suggested Resources for the Key Stage 1 Lesson Plan

Here is a list of typical resources suggested to test the idea of asteroids always landing in craters with a Key Stage 1 class.  Essentially, the children need to consider a suitable substrate and to test what happens when objects are dropped into the substrate.

* Tray
* Flour or sand (substrate)
* Objects of various sizes, shapes and weight
* Table covers/newspaper
* Ruler for measuring (optional)
* Paper for making notes (optional)
* Camera to record experiment results (optional)

Outlining the Lesson with the Class

Whilst exploring with the class the idea that the non-avian dinosaurs no longer exist, seek an unprompted definition of the word “extinction”.  Can the class demonstrate further pre-knowledge by explaining about how the dinosaurs died out?  If needed, explain about the space rock impact idea and challenge the children to work out whether asteroids always land in craters or does the impact create the crater?

Can the Children Create Simple Comparative Tests?

Testing the impact of different objects in flour - asteroid impact modellling.

Different objects landing in flour, modelling asteroid impacts.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Extension Ideas – Questions to Ask

What sort of craters do the different objects make?
What makes the larger crater a big object or a small object?
Which makes the deeper crater a heavy object or a light object?
What sort of craters do different shaped objects make?
Does it make a difference if you vary the height from which you drop the objects?
Can the children make a prediction about the size/shape/depth of the crater depending on the object dropped?

In addition, the Key Stage 2 lesson plan and teaching notes asks the class to devise their own experiments to answer the asteroid/always in a crater question.

As a “wow” moment to conclude the lesson plan, try this idea.  Working outside, what happens when a really big object such as a football is dropped into a bucket of flour?  The spraying of flour should provide a suitable memorable moment to help the class remember the key learning points from this simple experiment.

For further advice and ideas about science teaching in school, visit Everything Dinosaur’s “dinosaurs for schools” website: Dinosaurs for Schools

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