Today’s activity idea is dinosaur fossils. I have my Apple Trees thinking head on yesterday and decided to do an activity I used to do with my oldest son Harry. He is now twelve so its been a few years. I am really glad I did it as Albie, my 7 year old absolutely loved it, showing that you can have fun through play at any age!! This activity is best suited to our Butterfly and Ladybird children but our Caterpillar children can still take part with a bit more help!
You will need to prepare the fossils the day before you plan to do this activity, so you will need to be prepared. To prepare the fossils you will need some small dinosaur figures, balloons and water.
Part 1 – Preparing The Fossils
To prepare the fossils take a balloon and blow it up to stretch the balloon. Here comes the fiddly bit. You now have to get the dinosaur into the balloon. This can be tricky but it is well worth it. Once you have the dinosaurs inside the balloon fill the balloon with water. You want just enough water so that the dinosaur is surrounded by it. Tie a know in the balloon and repeat as many times as you like. I could only find 3 balloons in the birthday draw so I did 3. Pop them in the freezer to freeze over night. If you do not have balloons simple put the dinosaurs in any small freezer proof container and cover with water.
Part 2 – Digging For Dinosaurs
Step 1 – Take the fossils out of the freezer and remove the balloons. Cut the knotted part away and they should peel off revealing a wonderful smooth piece of ice with a visible dinosaur inside. Pop them back into the freezer while you assemble the dinosaur kingdom!
Step 2 – Take any tray or container, I used an Ikea tub, and with your little one go out into the garden to collect stones, grasses, plants, bark, whatever you can find to create a dinosaur land. I popped a few larger dinosaurs into the tray too for interest and playful purposes.
Step 3 – Assemble a cup of warm water, some tools, play doh tools and paint brushes are perfect, and the fossils. Place the fossils into the tub and let your little one dig for the dinosaurs. If you add warm water it helps the ice melt so that they can dig better. I used a water doppler but if you don’t have these just drip and pour it on. Once all the dinosaurs are free you have a lovely play scene for some imaginative dinosaur fun!
Extending The Activity
While doing this activity talk about the dinosaurs, what are they called? What colours are they? What noises do they make? Where do they live? Talk about the fossils, what do the feel like? Use describing words as you explore your dinosaur land such as cold, hot, hard, soft, smooth, rough etc.
We hope you enjoy the activity and if you do we would love to see your dinosaur fossils. Visit our facebook page and leave a picture there!
Apple Trees is currently closed due to the coronavirus pandemic but you can still secure your place for September. If you would like to receive a brochure please click here!
Until next time,