When the kids are home for the summer, I like to try to do fun activities… out of the ordinary activities. They do their daily reading, writing, and math, but we really have fun when we work on science projects. Making a giant dinosaur out of toilet paper rolls and paper towel rolls were one of our favorite science projects.
Finding a Topic to Study with the Kids:
To decide what we are going to do each week, I ask the kids to give me an idea of what they want to study. They asked if we could learn about dinosaurs, cars or volcanos. We decided on dinosaurs, so we studied everything about them:
- Where did the dinosaurs live?
- When did the dinosaurs live?
- What did dinosaurs eat?
- Did all dinosaurs swim?
- Did all dinosaurs fly?
- Did all dinosaurs walk?
We looked into any detail that we could find.
Next, we decided that we wanted to make our own dinosaur skeleton!
How to Make a Giant Dinosaur Skeleton
We started collecting empty toilet paper rolls and empty paper towel rolls. We saved them in our house and we had my parents & brother’s family save theirs, as well. It took us about two weeks, but we finally had enough to start our project.
First, you need to find a picture of the dinosaur that you want to build. Look up pictures of that dinosaur and then look for pictures of the skeleton. Show your kids the picture, so they can see what they are building.
Next, let your kids try to build it on their own. Give them the picture or your phone with the picture on it and explain what they will be doing. Talk about the different sizes of bones, which is why they have large & small rolls.
This encourages teamwork and patience.
Lastly, you will draw ahead for the dinosaur (or you can print one).
When they have the skeleton finished, add the dinosaur skull and you’re done! Use this opportunity to talk about fossils and how they are found.
Talk about why fossils are important and how we can use what scientists have learned to learn more about dinosaurs ourselves.
The kids loved this experiment!
- They worked together
- They learned about dinosaurs.
- They made a really cool project that they were really proud of!
- They built.
- They crafted.
- They learned!
I encourage you to make this dinosaur with your kids! Let your kids do the building and creating. Try not to take over (it’s hard when you see easier ways to work or when you have an idea for them), but just see how great they can do when they work together and rely on each other’s help!
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