Australian Dinosaur Story

Lesson ideas

 

Science and technology
  • Create your own fossils by pressing shells, plants, fish bones etc. into soft clay. Fill the spaces with wet plaster. Remove the plaster when dry to reveal your fossil. Discuss how the Lark Quarry dinosaur trackways could have been created in a similar way.
  • In groups, create a giant poster of geological time. Draw small pictures of plants and animals that existed during each time period.
  • Conduct a study of as many different kinds of animal teeth as you can. What can we learn about an animal by looking at its teeth?
  • Discuss food chains. Using an appropriate computer program that the school has, create a food-web for plants and animals for the Cretaceous Period.
  • Student activity sheet 1.
  • Student activity sheet 2.
  • Student activity sheet 3.
Society and the environment
  • Create two posters, one depicting the environment of central Australia during the Cretaceous Period and one showing how the environment looks now. Discuss the differences.
  • Investigate animals that live in specific climatic regions today. Identify the special features that enable them to live in these places. Are there some dinosaurs that you think could have survived in any of the modern conditions? Which ones and where?
  • Student activity sheet 4.
  • Student activity sheet 5.
Maths
  • How big is a million? Find ways of displaying, describing how much a million is. Relate this to the fact that scientists believe that dinosaurs lived on the earth over 65 million years ago. That's a very long time!
  • Create a list of the heights of some of the dinosaurs and match them to things in the environment today that are a similar size. Are you amazed at what you discovered?
  • Student activity sheet 10.
English
  • Write a story about what it would have been like to live during the Cretaceous Period. Write it from the point of view of one of the animals that lived at that time.
  • Debate the topic: 'The dinosaur trackways discovery at Lark Quarry is important for all Australians'.
  • Write a poem about your favourite Lark Quarry dinosaur. Describe why you like that particular dinosaur and how you would have tried to make friends with it. Did you make friends at the end of your poem?
  • Student activity sheet 6.
  • Student activity sheet 7.
  • Student activity sheet 8.
The arts
  • Using a small box, create a diorama of what you think the scene at Lark Quarry would have looked like when the dinosaurs that left the Skartopus, Wintonopus and Tyrannosauropus footprints were living there.
  • Design a logo for a tourism company that wishes to begin tours to Lark Quarry in Queensland.
  • Create some stencils of dinosaur footprints out of cardboard. Then draw around the inside of your stencils on a piece of paper to print-out your own dinosaur trackway.
Health and physical education
  • Study the structure of an animal skeleton. Find out facts about the strength and function of the bones. How do they compare to that of a human skeleton?
  • Find a large bed of soft dirt or sand (perhaps the school long-jump pit) and smooth-out the surface. Experiment by having different members of the class walk, run, jump, tiptoe and turn making footprints in the sand. Compare the difference in the footprints made by lighter, more solid, taller and shorter class members. Discuss how scientists might use such information to determine how large and heavy a particular dinosaur was and whether it was walking, running or turning.
LOTE/Languages
  • Student activity sheet 9.

 

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