All about dinosaurs, fossils and prehistoric animals by Everything Dinosaur team members.
29 08, 2014

Achievosaurs – Key Learning Skills in EYFS

By | August 29th, 2014|Early Years Foundation Reception|Comments Off on Achievosaurs – Key Learning Skills in EYFS

Developing Key Learning Skills – Thanks to Dinosaurs

Children either entering formal education or at an early stage of their careers in school can be helped to develop important skills thanks to dinosaurs.  Many learning support providers are keen to drive a culture of development and achievement, reinforcing key learning skills that will serve the students throughout their education.  Developing learning skills can form part of a coordinated plan to improve life-long learning.  The “Achievosaurs”, or as they are sometimes referred to as the “Achieveosaurs”, aims to teach children about positive ways in which their ability to learn can improved.  Qualities such as being determined and staying focused on a task, being prepared to ask questions and share ideas are rewarded by permitting the child to look after one of the “Achievosaurs” – a dinosaur soft toy which represents a character that shows that key skill.

One of the “Achievosaurs” Dinosaur Soft Toy Ranges

Dinosaur Soft Toys helps to reinforce key learning behaviours.

Dinosaur Soft Toys helps to reinforce key learning behaviours.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Soft Toy Dinosaurs

A set of soft toy dinosaurs can be used to help reinforce these key learning skills.  Staff members at Everything Dinosaur, with their teaching backgrounds have assisted learning support providers by offering all sorts of innovative learning materials for use in schools and nurseries.  For instance, a large number of schools use Everything Dinosaur’s soft toys to help deliver the “Achievosaurs” teaching concept.  However, as manufacturers alter their product ranges, so many of the dinosaur soft toys used in the original schemes of work become unavailable.  No worries, as Everything Dinosaur specialises in the supply of prehistoric animal toys and games, our team members are on hand to provide advice and to help teachers develop the “Achievosaurs” teaching concept.

Adopting the “Achievosaurs” Concept

Many schools adopt the “Achievosaurs”concept across all their classes in Early Years and Reception through into upper Key Stage 1, it often ties in with a related term topic covered by the children in Year 1 and 2 which enables them to learn about rocks, fossils and dinosaurs.

Key Learning Skills Typically Covered in the “Achievosaurs” Teaching Concept

  • SOLVEOSAURUS REX – I can solve problems and improve (based on T. rex the most famous dinosaur of all)
  • TRYCERATOPS – I try new things, don’t give up and work really hard (based on Triceratops, a very well known horned dinosaur with three horns)
  • STICKASAURUS  – I stick at tasks and persevere (based on Stegosaurus a popular, plant eating dinosaur with plates on its back)
  • THINKODOCUS – I think carefully about what I learn (based on the big, plant-eating dinosaur called Diplodocus)
  • SHAREOSAURUS – I share my ideas and can work well with others (based on the Spinosaurus)

To view Everything Dinosaur’s range of prehistoric animal soft toys: Soft Toy Dinosaurs

Helping young children to develop such important skills for learning later on in life.  Teachers are free to come up with their own variants and new additions, this is where our team members can help, by advising on educational matters and guiding teachers as to their choice of prehistoric animal to represent the particular skill or learning behaviour that they wish to develop with their class.  After all, what five-year old can refuse the chance to look after their very own soft toy dinosaur?

29 08, 2014

In Pursuit of the “Shiva” Crater and Dinosaur Extinction

By | August 29th, 2014|Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal News Stories, Dinosaur Fans|0 Comments

In Search of Dinosaur Extinction Theories – The “Shiva” Crater

The controversial tear-drop shaped Shiva crater located off the western coast of India has divided opinions for decades.  Whilst many people may be familiar with the extraterrestrial impact theory that led to the end Cretaceous mass extinction event, most would argue that the Chicxulub crater located off the coast of the Yucatan peninsula (Mexico) is the most likely candidate for that “smoking gun” evidence to indicate that a large body from outer space crashed into the Earth.  Not so, according to Professor Sankar Chatterjee and his colleagues.  Professor Chatterjee, a Horn Professor of Palaeontology and the Curator at the Museum of Texas Tech University, believes that an object from space perhaps a comet or an asteroid, some forty kilometres in diameter smashed into the Earth around sixty-six million years ago and this too contributed to the Cretaceous-Palaeogene extinction event.

The Shiva crater is named after the Hindu god of destruction, transformation and renewal.  It is estimated to be around six hundred kilometres in length and around four hundred kilometres across at its widest part.  Professor Chatterjee has been awarded the prestigious “Fulbright-Nehru Academic and Professional Excellence Award”, which includes a grant which the Indian-American scholar intends to use to fund a visit to Western India next spring to continue his research on the crater.  The Fulbright Programme is an international educational exchange programme sponsored by the Government of the United States with the aim of increasing mutual understanding between the people of America and the rest of the world.  Professor Chatterjee will join the Koyna Drilling Project and analyse rock cores drilled through the sea bed in a bid to establish the age of this geological phenomena and to learn more about its formation.

Professor Sankar Chatterjee (Texas Tech University)

Our congratulations to the Professor.

Our congratulations to the Professor.

Picture Credit: Texas Tech University

The crater was discovered when geophysical surveys of the Mumbai Offshore Basin revealed a huge, tear-drop shaped depression in the strata that forms the western continental shelf of India.  The crater is buried under layers of rock which are between two kilometres and seven kilometres deep.  Professor Chatterjee explains that the strange shape of the crater may have been caused by the shallow angle of trajectory or by subsequent rock falls or as a result of ancient volcanic activity – after throws of the immense volcanism that led to the formation of the extensive Deccan Traps.  The area is believed to hold vast reserves of fossil fuels, both crude oil and natural gas.

It is hoped that this new research will confirm that this crater was caused by an extraterrestrial impact, a theory challenged by a number of scientists and academics who contend that this feature does not represent an impact crater at all.  The Shiva crater for example, is not recorded on the Earth Impact Database of the Planetary and Space Science Centre at the University of Brunswick (Canada).

The Site of the Shiva Crater in Relation to the Deccan Traps

The estimated location of the Shiva Crater.

The estimated location of the Shiva Crater.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Last year, Everything Dinosaur reported on some new research carried out by an international team of scientists that dated the Chicxlub crater to 66,038,000 years ago (plus or minus 11,000 years).  This was the most accurate date proposed yet and places the impact event at around the time of the extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs and about seventy percent of all terrestrial life.

To read more about this research: Most Accurate Date Yet Established for Chicxulub Impact Crater

It has also been suggested that no, one single extraterrestrial impact event was the cause of the extinctions.  Indeed, it has been suggested that the dinosaurs, pterosaurs and other groups that perished may have been subjected to more than one Earth/space collision.  In addition, Everything Dinosaur reported last year on research that proposed a comet was the most likely culprit for the Yucatan peninsula impact.

To read this article: American Researchers Propose Comet Caused the Chicxulub Crater

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