Friday, July 19, 2013

Paleontology Rocks 1

It was our first week of paleontology camp here at the museum and it was one of the best weeks yet!  We started the week learning about the geologic time scale and made an outdoor scale model timeline of some of the earth’s biggest events.  We also put together a timeline of our own life events.  Our counselors gave us a great tour of the Life Through the Ages exhibit on the second floor, and then we got to draw our own prehistoric creatures!

Talking about timelines

Making prehistoric creatures!

Thinking about where the different animals go on the timeline

On Tuesday we learned just what is a dinosaur.  We learned the four rules by taking a tour of some of the dinosaur exhibits on the second floor, then learned about how dinosaur bodies are built so they can balance and move around.  We also played the dinosaur name game, and got to create and name our own dinosaurs!

Wednesday was all about dinosaur adaptations, and we learned about many different adaptations that dinosaurs had to help them survive.  Triceratops had three horns and claws, and we got to make triceratops masks and claws to wear around the museum!  Sauropods used gastroliths to help them digest their food, and we got to take part in a demo to see just how this works.  We also got to hear reconstructed sounds of the kinds of noises dinosaurs would have made!


On Thursday we learned about other prehistoric reptiles, and reviewed the four rules of what makes a dinosaur focusing on why some prehistoric creatures, like pterodactyl, were not actually dinosaurs.  Just like real paleontologists, we got to put together the bones of a Mosasaur hand.  We also made our own flying pterosaurs!

Talking with Emile a U-M graduate student in paleontology
 Friday was about fossils, and we got to meet a real live paleontologist from the Museum!  He showed us some of the tools he uses in his work and some of the fossils he has found.  It was a great presentation!  We also got to dig for real fossils like shark teeth and brachiopods!

Looking at fossils in the Museum

A fossilized tree!

Our first week of paleontology camp was fun for all and we can’t wait to see what week two brings us!

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