Autumn 1- Dinosaur Planet
This project teaches children about dinosaurs and fossils, and the amazing discoveries of palaeontologists such as Mary Anning.
The children worked in pairs to observe a selection of fake poo samples. They used scientific terminology to compare size, shape, colour, texture and content. Based on what the children found they had to identify whether the poo came from a carnivore (meat), herbivore (plants) or an omnivore (both meat and plants).
Prior to examining the poo, we spoke about the protective equipment we would need. The children identified that we needed to wear gloves to keep our hands clean and make sure that we do not spread germs.
By the end of the lesson, the children had examined all three samples and come to a conclusion.
Sample 1- Herbivore because it only contained grass, leaves and seeds.
Sample 2-Omnivore because there were evidence of meat, leaves, grass and seeds.
Sample 3-Carnivore because it contained meat, bones and teeth.
Our focus in drama is dinosaur movements. The children enjoyed using magnifying glasses to hunt for dinosaur eggs. They used their own dinosaur movements to sneak up on the dinosaur nest so that the adult dinosaur wouldn't hear them. We even had a dinosaur disco to end our topic!
Mental Health Day - Hello Yellow
The children came to school dressed in something yellow and participated in World Mental Health Day. We teamed up with Year 2 and took part in activities that help us to relax, regulate our emotions and feel happier.
Throughout the day we:
- Had a go at cosmic yoga
- Played games, took turns and created beautiful pictures with our friends in provision.
- Painted pictures using cotton buds.
Design and Technology
LQ: How do you follow instructions to make dinosaur biscuits?
The children were given a set of simple instructions to design their own dinosaur biscuit. They worked in small groups to read the instructions (with adult support) and followed the instructions one by one. The children were given pictures of dinosaurs as a prompt.
By the end of the lesson, the children had created amazing dinosaur biscuits by following simple instructions.
LQ: What happened to the dinosaurs?
To start the lesson, we made predictions about what happened to the dinosaurs. The children were able to listen to others ideas and were able to expand on why they made that predictions.
Some of the predictions we made were;
- The dinosaurs were old.
- A meteor hit earth.
- The cave men ate them.
Once we had all discussed our ideas, we then watched videos and read information books to find out what really happened to them. By the end of the lesson, the children were able to explain that dinosaurs became extinct due to an asteroid hitting earth. The dust from the asteroid made the sky go dark, meaning that plants began to die. Herbivores then became extinct, causing carnivores to become extinct too due to lack of food.
We have been learning all about Harvest. We worked together to make our own class scarecrow and even performed our own harvest poem. The children enjoyed listening to Reverend Cath’s Stone Soup story linked to Harvest.
Design and Technology
LQ: How do you create a model dinosaur?
The children worked in pairs to create a model dinosaur. They used a range of materials including paper, plastic, cardboard and fabric. Throughout the session, the children thought about the most suitable materials for the different parts of their dinosaur e.g. cardboard for the body as this is a strong material and fabric for the wings. They were able to change their resources as and when needed to ensure that their model stayed together.
As a result of perseverance and team work, the children were able to create amazing model dinosaurs.
LQ: How do you label the parts of a tree?
The children listened to the story 'Little Acorn' about the life cycle of an acorn. Throughout the story, we spoke about the parts of a tree. We looked at an information PowerPoint that explained the purpose of each part of a tree.
The children then used their new knowledge to label the parts of a tree. By the end of the lesson, the children were able to explain each part and what its purpose is.
They were very eager to use their knew knowledge and even looked closely at the parts of a tree during playtime
LQ: How do you compare dinosaurs and reptiles?
The children identified the similarities and differences of a variety of dinosaurs and reptiles. They noticed that some dinosaurs and reptiles had the same amount of legs, scaly skin, sharp claws and long tails. They also discussed how they varied in size and the fact that reptiles tend to be smaller than dinosaurs.
By the end of the session they were able to label a reptile and dinosaur as well as discuss the similarities and differences between them.
Art and Design
LQ: How do you create a dinosaur egg?
The children were given the following information;
- The Maiasaur laid their eggs in a circle.
- Saurapods laid theirs in a row as if they were laid while walking.
- Hypselosaurus laid football sized eggs in groups of five.
They used manipulation methods such as squeezing, pinching, pulling, pressing, squashing and smoothing to create dinosaur eggs with their play dough.
They were able to demonstrate that they understood how the eggs were laid by shaping their play dough.
LQ: How do you label the parts of a plant?
The children listened to the story 'Little Sunflower' to help them understand the parts of a plant. The book provided visual representations of a petal, stem, leaves and roots. Once they had learnt the key vocabulary of todays session, they had a go at labelling the flowers in small groups. By the end of the lesson, the children were able to label the parts of a plant and could talk about their new knowledge with peers.
LQ: How do you identify dinosaur teeth?
To start off with the children recapped their understanding of carnivores, herbivores and omnivores. We then spoke about how dinosaurs needed different shaped teeth to able to chew through meat and grass. By the end of the lesson they were able to sort a range of dinosaur teeth into carnivore and omnivore teeth. They used the key vocabulary 'flat' for herbivore teeth and 'sharp' for carnivore teeth.
LQ: Who is Mary Anning and why is she significant?
The children watched a short story about the life of Mary Anning. By the end of the session, children were able to explain that Mary Anning was a significant person because she was a famous fossil hunter.
The children were shocked to find out that she sold the first fossils that she found for only 1 pence.
The story of Mary Anning really inspired some of the children and some of them even decided that they would like to be a palaeontologist when they are older.
LQ: How do you group animals based on the foods they eat?
The children learnt that carnivores eat other animals (meat), herbivores eat plants and omnivores eat meat and plants.
They used their new knowledge to sort a variety of animals based on the foods that they eat.
By the end of the lesson the children were able to group and sort a variety of animals into carnivores, herbivores and omnivores.
Prior to our engage day, we discussed what we already knew about dinosaurs. We then spoke about what we would like to find out throughout the topic.
Engage day- Making and drawing fossils
We explored fossils and watched videos of palaeontologists finding fossils.
We worked in groups to make our own salt dough fossils and even had a go at drawing them.
Engage day- Measuring dinosaur footprints
The children came in from dinner and there were footprints everywhere. They weren't just any footprints though... they were dinosaur footprints. They used their maths skills and cubes to compare the size of the footprints . They enjoyed working in teams to find out how many cubes long each footprint was.
Engage day- Discovering a dinosaur egg
The children went to explore the outside area after finding footprints leading to Waltz Wood. When we got there, we found a giant egg. We carefully passed the egg around and shared our ideas about what could be living inside the egg. We spoke about how to care for the egg and decided to work together to make nests to keep the egg warm.
Engage day- Dinosaur landscapes
The children were shown lots of different photographs of dinosaurs and were encouraged to describe the shapes, patterns and colours in the pictures. We collected natural resources from the outside area and worked in teams to make prehistoric landscapes. At the end each group went around and looked at the designs.
Look at our dazzling dinosaurs!
We used the watercolour paints to create dazzling dinosaurs.
For many of us it was our first time using watercolours. Miss Clark thinks that we did a fantastic job!