A Day in the Life of a Paleontologist

Oh my goodness!!!  My class and I just arrived from a field trip to the Mesozoic Period.  Yes, the time of when dinosaurs roamed the land we call home!!! This has been an exciting five weeks learning at school!!  I’ve been swamped these few weeks and haven’t been able to post our learning, so I’ll be posting the main events throughout the next week for you to enjoy.  Have you ever taken your kids into the past with a time machine?  We certainly used our time machine to help us on this adventure!!

 

 

We launched our learning with a field trip to the Alaska State Fair!  Lucky for us  . . . there was an exhibit that focused on Alaska dinosaurs with an artist, who works with paleontologists, as our tour guide.  Since we just started our learning, the kids had their notebooks ready to fill with answers to their questions. Great little notetakers they were that day!  They prepared and learned how to ask interview questions before our trip.  Then were able to carefully write accurate responses as they began their second day of dinosaur research.

 

 

Part of our learning involved being a paleontologist. The kids had fun digging for dinosaurs, looking at “the real deal” fossils as well as some replicas.  They were able to experience a “Day in the Life of a Paleontologist” on this trip and learn how a paleontologist would uncover fossils.

 

At another point on the trip, students were able to learn how the mechanical dinosaurs operate – like in the movies.  Along with the dinosaur scenes, picture opportunities were available at each station.

 

 

This was an exciting way to begin our research about the prehistoric time period, focusing on the
Dinosaurs!  With our initial learning opportunity behind us, we were ready to continue uncovering clues to answer the essential questions, which will lead us to uncover our driving question: What happened to the dinosaurs?

 

 

I can’t wait to write about the next phase of our adventure.   Do your kids like dinosaurs?  Are you looking for a way to teach literacy skills through a science and social studies lens?  Check back for the next steps in our journey!

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Annette Durbin

Annette has been an educator for 27 years working in the elementary classroom, district leadership, university professor, as well as a mentor for teachers nationwide. A National Board Certificated Teacher, Annette focuses her research on accelerating learning and advancing achievement, personalizing instruction, technology, and leadership in the education field.

This Post Has 46 Comments

  1. Rosanna

    Looks like a great place for kids to learn.

    1. Annette Durbin

      This was such a great learning experience. We totally lucked out that the exhibit was at the fair.

      Thanks for stopping by!
      ~ Annette

  2. Cassie

    My little guy loves dinosaurs and would have loved this field trip. What a fun day!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Thanks, Cassie!! I’m sure he would have had soo much fun learning!! I hope there is an opportunity for him to see dinosaurs in a museum. Also, there is a National Park in Utah called Dinosaur National Park. Perhaps a family field trip, if it isn’t too far away.

      ~ Annette

  3. Nina

    This looks like so much fun!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Thanks, Nina. Yes, it was FUN with all the bells and whistles!

      Have a great week!
      ~ Annette

  4. Jessica Corris

    So great! My kids are too young to be into dinosaurs, but my husband (young at heart) loves visiting our hometown museum where they have similar fossils and archeology exhibits – fun for kids of all ages!!

    1. Annette Durbin

      That is wonderful Jessica! Anytime you can get out into nature or visit a local museum to learn, it certainly brings the kid out in all of us.

      Have a great week!
      ~ Annette

  5. Allison

    My little baby cousins would love to be on this field trip! They love dinosaurs so much they know all of the names. I’ll be sure to make this as a bucket list for my little ones to visit. Thank you so much for sharing!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Hello Allison! That is great!! I didn’t know there were soo many different dinosaurs. I learned quite a bit on this trip and learning unit, too. Any museum is certainly a place to visit and learn

      Have a great week!
      ~ Annette

  6. Melissa Parcel

    This is interesting, I would like to know more detailed information!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Hello Melissa, I’ll be posting more of the learning and fun. If you have specific questions, do not hesitate to ask.

      Thanks for stopping by!
      ~ Annette

  7. Dennis

    Our kids love dinosaurs! What a fun post.

    1. Annette Durbin

      Thanks, Dennis!! My children are grown, but this would have been a great place to take them. I’m glad I was able to take my students!

      Have a great week!
      ~ Annette

  8. Nicki

    That look like so much fun! A great way to learn!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Thanks, Nicki! You bet – it was a fabulous learning adventure.

      Thanks for stopping by!
      ~ Annette

  9. Jocelyn

    This looks like such a fun field trip! Dinosaurs are awesome no matter how old you are, in my opinion.

    1. Annette Durbin

      LOL! I totally agree, Jocelyn! I learned so much on this trip, gathering resources, and being a learner with the students. It was a great way to begin our school year and learn together.

      Have a great week!
      ~ Annette

  10. Pam

    I love field trips! I think I get more out of them than my kids because I’m always so interested in what we are learning – it’s a great way to see a place with a whole different mindset.

    1. Annette Durbin

      I love that your brought up the “different mindset”! Yes, I totally agree. Sometimes we have to get out of our comfort zone and learn alongside the kiddos. It was a great experience!

      Thanks for stopping by!
      ~ Annette

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