The DINOSAURS AT LARGE programme content is especially developed for the Australian Curriculum. It is uniquely designed to link the children’s work and studies to a central learning experience.

The Dinosaur theme brings relevance to the key learning areas across all elementary grades to ensure students gain absolute value from their participation in the presentation.

The Dinosaur at Large experience gives students a unique perspective which links modern and pre-historic times to the current issues of environmental awareness, climate change, global warming, extinction, and sustainability.

With over 100 educational worksheets, Dinosaur At Large is an ideal foundation for future classroom lessons and activities.

The program works within the following strands of the broad areas of learning during the presentation, and encourages students to learn and interact during the session in the following way.


By the end of the session, the students will have

    • Explored dinosaurs as real animals that once walked on the Earth a very long time ago, in much the same way as animals do today.
    • Learned that dinosaurs came in all shapes and sizes and that these different body types allowed them to survive in a variety of different environments and times.
    • Discovered that dinosaurs were not the only type of animal to live long ago, that other animals like reptiles, insects, fish, mammals etc. lived then as well, including animals that are still around today.
    • Seen that dinosaurs were divided into several very distinctive groups where different types of animals in the group acted and looked similar.
    • Learned that dinosaurs came in a vast variety of sizes, from chicken size to “four storey building” size, and that these sizes enabled them to eat different foods.
    • Explored the differences between meat-eaters and plant-eaters, how each feeds itself and how they were similar to animals of today.
    • Discussed how scientists find out extra information about extinct animals through looking at their footprints, eggs, skin prints and environment.
    • Explored the fact that paleontologists can work out what the whole animal probably looked like from just a few bones by comparing them to animals that have similar bones, and that they can try the same activity at home with a chicken.

Educational Outcomes

English – Language

Language for Interaction

Learning to ask relevant questions and to express request and opinions in ways that suit different contexts.

By being encouraged to communicate and respond to various stimuli during the session – counting out the size of a dinosaur altogether with the presenter. During the session the students will be asked to respond with their opinions on a variety of props and ideas in a way that will be understandable to their peers.

Expressing and Developing Ideas

Explore the different contribution of words and images to meaning in stories and informative texts. Exploring how the combination of print and images in text creates meaning.

By discussing possible interpretations of images and identifying features that did or did not appeal to them and elaborating on that point to tell a story – “The T-rex is the biggest animal on the poster. I liked it because it is one of the biggest meat-eaters but I still think I could get away from it if I was being chased ……”

By being encouraged to compare dinosaurs with animals familiar to them – “The long neck dinosaur has legs like an elephant.”


English – Reading and Viewing

Texts

By discussing possible interpretations of images and identifying features that did or did not appeal to them, – “The T-rex is the biggest animal on the poster, I liked it because it made a lot of noise”.

Contextual Understanding

By being encouraged to listen carefully to others and to communicate about what they have observed during the question session and in their classroom afterwards.

Strategies

By predicting the sequence of events of a particular module and verbalising that prediction, – “The Allosaurus is chasing the plant-eater, when it catches the animal it will eat it”.


English – Literacy

Text in Context

Listen to and respond orally to text and to the communication of others in informal and structural classroom situations. Listening for the specific things, for example the main idea of a story, or to answer a given question. Asking and answering questions to clarify understanding.

By being encouraged to listen carefully to others and to communicate about what they have observed during the question session and in their classroom afterwards.

Interpreting, Analysis, and Evaluating

Use comprehension strategies to understand and discuss text listened to, or read independently. Using speaking, writing and drawing to represent and communicate personal responses to ideas and events experienced through texts.

By predicting the sequence of events of a particular module and verbalising that prediction even when evidence is missing – “The meat-eater is chasing the plant-eater, when it catches the animal, it will have food for a long time because the plant-eater is much larger than it.”


Science – Science Understanding

Biological Sciences

Living things have basic needs including food and water.

By looking at the most fundamental source of energy transferral, that is, food and looking at how these animals got energy to live in their day to day lives and learning that food is the fuel that allows the animals to live – “A meat-eater eats a plant-eater and hence has energy to live.”

Living things have a variety of external features. Recognising common features of animals such as head, legs, and wings. Describing the use of animal body parts for particular purposes such as moving and feeding.

By identifying obvious physical features in dinosaurs that are similar to animals of today and comparing similar functions of those animals with animals of today – “A Brachiosaurus has thick legs like an elephant.”

Living things have cycles. Making and recording observations of living things as they develop through their life cycles.

Living things including plants and animals depend on each other and the environment to survive. Recognising that interactions between living things may be competitive or mutually beneficial.

Living things have structural features and adaptations that help them to survive in their environment.

By looking at how animals change to suit their environment – “The long neck dinosaurs grew long necks so as to take advantage of a food source.”

Exploring what happens when habitats change and some living things can no longer have their needs met.

By looking at how there are and always have been systems working in the world and that all the separate parts of the system work together to survive – The ecosystem of an ancient forest where the dinosaurs played their part as well as the trees, insects and weather etc.

By looking at how our world is and always has been full of groups of living things that work together to survive – Ecosystems of different dinosaurs, ancient plants and insects.

Earth and Space Sciences

Daily and seasonal changes in our environment, including the weather affect everyday life.

By identifying features of the Earth around them and how they change, – how the vegetation changes according to the weather and specifically how the dinosaurs changed over time in response to vegetation changes which responded to changes in the climate .

By looking at the changes that have happened to the world over time and how that has affected the way animals have looked over time. Students learn the importance of our responsibility to manage our environment sustainably.

Physical Sciences

The way objects move depends on a variety of factors, including their size and shape. Observing how the movement of different living things depends on the size and shape.

Nature and Development of Science

Science involves exploring and observing the world using the senses. Using sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell so that students can gather information about the world around them.

Identifying ways that science knowledge is used in the care of the local environment such as animal habitats, and suggesting changes to parks and gardens to better meet the needs of native animals.

By connecting experiences observed from the session to everyday experiences and evaluating what this could mean for their everyday lives, – By looking at how the world once was we can understand more about how the world works and how animals develop in different environments.

Use and Influence of Science

Recognising that many living things rely on resources that may be threatened, and that science understanding can contribute to the preservation of such resources.

By looking at how the world once was we can understand more about how the world works and how animals develop in different environments- . Students learn about environmental sustainability by connecting ideas about life on Earth observed from the session to everyday experiences and evaluating what this could mean for their everyday lives.

Processing and Analysing Data and Information

Taking part in informal and guided discussions relating to students observations. Using drawings to represent observations and ideas and discussing their representations with others.

By participating in the question session and answering questions using newly acquired data including examining views held by several opposing schools of thought, – The different theories about how the dinosaurs died.


Maths

Number and Place Value

Comparing and ordering items of like and unlike characteristics using the words more, less, same as and not the same as and giving reasons for these answers. Using a range of practical strategies for adding small group of numbers, such as visual displays or concrete materials.

By exploring the animals of the ancient world with reference to size, beginning, end etc – “I wonder how many elephants would fit into the Brachiosaurus from the top to the bottom.”

By describing objects in relation to weight and size – “If we brought a real T-rex into the classroom here today, it would be so big that it wouldn’t be able to fit.”

By looking at geological time (millions of years) compared with a lifetime and introducing the concept of how old the Earth is compared to us.

Patterns and Algebra

Sort and classifying familiar objects and explain the basis for these classifications. Copy, continue and create patterns with objects and drawings. Creating and describing patterns using materias, sounds, movements and drawings.

By describing the shape of certain objects – upon seeing an Allosaurus claw, the students will observe that the Allosaurus had sharp claws like knives that could slice into another much larger animal to kill it for food.

By distinguishing between likely and unlikely events – “It is likely that scientists will find more dinosaurs DNA, but it is unlikely that they will be able to create a real dinosaur.”

Using Units of Measurement

Use direct or indirect comparisons to decide which is longer, heavier or holds more, and explain reasoning in everyday language. Using suitable language associated with measurement attributes, such as tall and taller, heavy and heavier holds more and holds less.

By classifying certain objects, – “All the dinosaurs look strange, and some are bigger than others”.

Shape

Recognise and classify familiar two-dimensional shapes and 3 dimensional objects using obvious features.

By describing the shape of certain objects, – “The Velociraptor had sharp claws like knives that could slice another animal to bits”.


Geography – Geographical Inquiry and Skills

Collecting, recording, evaluating and Representing

Record geographical data and information collected by observation. Describing the features of a special or local place by using their senses, for example, sight, smell and touch, and recording these observations.

Reflecting and responding

Reflect on their learning to suggest ways that they can look after a familiar place. Drawing pictures and describing the ways they carre for paces.