New Scienceworks Exhibition – Explore-a-saurus

They have arrived. The new dinosaur exhibition has now opened at Scienceworks in Melbourne. We were lucky enough to attend the opening night fun on Tuesday evening. I took all five kids with me (Mr I had work commitments that prevented him coming along, so he missed out on all the excitement!)

Finding an exhibition that appeals to all the ages of our kids now is a challenge at times. Th oldest is 12 and the youngest is 2 – they often have a very different view on what they find entertaining and what constitutes fun. Explore-a-saurus isn’t the sort of exhibition where kids just have to look at the dinosaurs and read about them. Considerable effort has been put into using a range of interactive mediums to show visitors how dinosaurs lived; from what they ate and how fast they ran, to how they cared for their young and what sort of noises and sounds they would have made. This is just some of the things we learnt:

Brushing for bones
How palaeontologists very carefully work to recover dinosaur bones from the earth.

Dinosaur Camouflage
Fabulous materials for the kids to test out how dinosaurs may have used camouflage to protect themselves. The kids could put on these fabric wraps and hide against the matching wall.

Dinosaur etching
Looking at what fossils can tell us.

Dinosaur Tracks
My personal favourite! Creating dinosaur tracks in the sand. Kids can wipe the slate clean and press buttons to see the different types of tracks that dinosaurs made.

Extinction Theory
Enacting the hypothesis that an asteroid crashed into earth and was responsible for the distinction of the dinosaurs.

Each child was given their own entry card with some clues on them to help them find “their dinosaur”. From reading about and observing the dinosaurs on display they could work out find their dinosaur.

We found our stegosaurus!

T- Rex Strength Test
Testing our strength out on the jaws of a T-rex!

Dinosaur sounds
The kids probably spent the most time in this area. There were a number of different work stations where the kids could connect pipes, then push on a lever and hear what sound a dinosaour would make if it looked like that!

Dinosaur Puzzles
There is a very well stocked dinoshop. I knew the shop would be open so gave the kids the option of bringing along their pocket money to spend. I lobbied hard for a dinosaur puzzle.

Dinosaur Ball
The dinosaur ball won over though and we came home with two!

The Explore-a-saurus exhibition had engaged all the kids, but I think it was enjoyed most of all by they 5 and 7 year olds. We have spend considerable time since attending the opening talking about all things dinosaurs. We have rotated the toys, so the big box of dinosaurs are now out to play again. We are grouping long necks and carnivores and using a whole range of new terminology that we learnt.

Thankfully the Scienceworks website has some great fact sheets, that are written in an engaging and easy to understand format for kids, so when I don’t the know the answer to the five year old’s questions we have been referring to these!

Explore-a-saurus Exhibition – The Details

Dates: Daily, Until 15 Apr 2012
Time: 10:00am – 4:30pm
Cost: Adults $18, Concession $6 and Children (3 – 16 years) $5. Prices include general entry to Scienceworks. (MV Members receive discounted entry.)
Bookings: Tickets now onsale and can be bought online or phone 13 11 02

Also keep an eye on the Scienceworks website as there are a whole host of special dino related activities planned for the up coming school holidays.