Sunday, 3 May 2015

Home Preschool Themes - Dinosaurs part 2

Continuing on from Monday, we have done some more Dinosaur related activities.  It's worth pointing out that I am not, at the point in my children's education, too worried about what they are actually learning from all this, I don't expect them to learn any of the Dinosaurs names, or what periods came before or after the Jurassic, or how to spell Piatnitzkysaurus!  For me the most important thing they do is play, and my hope is that I will be providing them with opportunities to play whilst also having fun and exploring new things.
So here are some more activities we have done this week with our Dinosaur theme:

Salt Dough Dinosaur Bones:

Boris and I had a go at making some salt dough dinosaur bones,
1 cup of plain flour,
1 cup of salt,
1/2 a cup of water.

Obviously I made most of these bones, but Boris had a good time rolling the dough into little worms which was good for his fine motor skill development and creativity.
I made a lot of vague bone shapes and used a picture of some dinosaur bones from a book as a guide but I wasn't trying to make it anatomically correct or anything.

We laid them out on a tray to bake in the over for 3 hours at about 170 degrees. 

I over baked the bones so they came out golden brown like biscuits so like some crazy mother I painted them white with poster paint at about 1.00am in the morning!!

Then we had a good time laying out the bones to make them look like some kind of prehistoric monster. We can also bury the bones to search for in the sand pit.  

Plaster of Paris Dino Eggs:

So I decided to use our plastic Easter eggs as part of a little archaeological excavation activity. I filled each egg with plaster of paris and squidged a little plastic dinosaur in each one to chisel out.  I think this would have been a really great idea if I had coated the inside of the eggs with vaseline, or lined them with cling film or something because I had a nightmare getting the blinking things out. Anyway I got them out eventually and we had a ball smashing them with wooden hammers.  (Probably would have been a good idea to wear goggles)

I decided to take the activity outside onto the patio after Biscuit dropped one of the eggs onto my breakfast tea plate and smashed it.

Woo hoo!! A Dinosaur!!  (I think Boris wasn't convinced there was actually anything in there till he saw a bit poking out)

The little dinos left lovely imprints in the plaster of paris.  I might do a bit of dry brush painting on these to really bring out the shape and textured. This activity was definately one for the gross motor skills.

Finally - Dinosaurs in Jelly!:

Because, why the hell not?!  You can never go wrong with three year olds and jelly. 

Another mad moment; me mixing poster paint and black food colouring into some jelly at stupid o'clock in the morning.  Now that's commitment!

How raaaaawesome does this dinosaur look coming out of the jelly?!

Obviously the jelly didn't stay in the water table and I had to warn visitors who went into the garden to watch out for the prehistoric slime on the patio. 

Grey jelly mmmmmm.

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