Pterosaurs are not Dinosaurs

Perhaps the single most distressing thing we see during our visits to schools to delivery dinosaur and fossil themed workshops are the inaccuracies in teaching resources.  Many of the downloads and other learning resources that teaching teams rely on are simply wrong.  It is not the fault of the teachers, it is laziness on the part of the providers.  At Everything Dinosaur, we do all that we can to help educate and inform and we provide lots of lesson plans, dinosaur themed resources, teaching materials and so forth.  Our “dinosaurs for schools” website: Dinosaurs for Schools has a handy downloads section, teaching professionals and home educationalists can download for free lots of helpful resources.  There is a helpful blog crammed full of examples of good teaching practice when it comes to learning about life in the past.  In addition, we try our best to provide assistance and helpful advice.

Inaccurate Dinosaur Themed Teaching Resources in Schools

Triceratops mistakes!

Triceratops? Not very good quality teaching resources.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The photograph above shows a typical dinosaur themed teaching resource that we come across in school.  We admit, that at Everything Dinosaur we do make mistakes from time to time “to err is human” and all that, but it is almost easier to state what is scientifically accurate in the picture above than to list the errors.  These are the sorts of dinosaur themed teaching materials that are used to help educate and inform.   We have serious concerns about the standards of such teaching materials.

Pterosaurs Are Not Dinosaurs

One of the commonest mistakes we find concerns the confusion as to what exactly is and what exactly is not a dinosaur.  At the “Dinosaurs of China” event at Wollaton Hall, one of the most significant items of information in the entire exhibition can be found painted onto a wall in one of the first-floor galleries leading to some of the exquisite feathered dinosaur fossils.

Pterosaurs Are Not Dinosaurs

Flying reptiles (Pterosauria) were not dinosaurs.

Pterosaurs are not dinosaurs.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The Pterosauria were not dinosaurs (members of the Dinosauria) but a separate, related order of flying reptiles.

Everything Dinosaur team members have lost count of the number of times Pterosaurs and for that matter, marine reptiles, have been included as dinosaurs.  Most children, with a degree of pre-knowledge, will be able to point out the errors in dinosaur themed “word mats” such as the one that we have posted below.

A Dinosaur Word Mat – Can You Spot the Mistakes?

A dinosaur word mat for schools with lots of mistakes.

A dinosaur word mat supplied by a school resources company – can you spot the mistakes?

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Providing Dinosaur and Fossil Themed Teaching Resources for Schools

During our latest school visit, we provided the teaching team (Reception and Key Stage 1), with Mary Anning themed resources, a pronunciation guide, a dinosaur geography exercise to help reinforce learning about the seven continents and a dinosaur song that we had written for use with Foundation Stage 2.  We were happy to help and these were all given away free.

For further information on Everything Dinosaur’s work in schools and to enquire about teaching resources: Contact Everything Dinosaur

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