E.J Harper, Dan Taylor (illus)
Simon & Schuster
This is the first in a new series of stories about a little boy and his toy pterodactyl that comes to life when Grandpa’s magical dinosaur journal is opened. Dylan’s Amazing Dinosaurs: The Tyrannosaurus Rex is an exciting story written by a real palaeontologist with some genuine dinosaur facts. An added bonus is the pop out dinosaur which comes with the book; great fun for story play
Share the story
As you read the story aloud pause to talk together about the illustrations and what is happening. Pause again when Dylan meets the dinosaur; what can he do? Ask your child what they would like to happen next. Read the rest of the story to see what happens.
When you read the story again children will enjoy joining in with parts of it, for example:
Off to the land where the dinosaurs roar!’
They can also join in with the sound effects (‘Roooaaaarrrrgghhhhh!’ and ‘Whooooshhhh!’)
Talk about the story
Talk about all the things you can see in Dylan’s tree house.
Find dinosaur facts in the story and talk about any unfamiliar words, for example ‘habitat’.
Talk about how many teeth your child has and if this is more or less than a Tyrannosaurus Rex!
Tell the story
Using the pop out Tyrannosaurus and perhaps a puppet or prop for Wings the pterodactyl, (see below) children will enjoy retelling the story in their own words.
Things to make and do
Make a dinosaur journal
Give children a small notebook to be their dinosaur journal or make one for them. Click here to find out how. Younger children could draw dinosaurs they ‘spot’ and have a go at writing about them. Older children could create fact file pages.
Make a pterodactyl puppet like ‘Wings’
Use the template and instructions to make a pterodactyl puppet with your child. Tell the story together with the puppet and the pop out Tyrannosaurus.
Make a hide or tree house
Create a tree house/hide using blankets over a table or a play house. Make sure there is a ‘window’ for dinosaur spotting!
Your child could keep their dinosaur journal there, binoculars (made from cardboard tubes taped together), dinosaur books and pictures could be taped on display.
Create Roar Island
A small area of garden, sandpit or large container with sand or earth could become Roar Island. Collect twigs, grasses, real or plastic plants and shiny foil or blue fabric for the river. Your child can help create the setting and arrange their pop out Tyrannosaurus and any other toy dinosaurs they have and play with them there.
Find out more
See lots of dinosaur activities here
Find out about palaeontologists and fossils
See a video clip for budding experts here
For more fun with the idea of being a palaeontologist here is a video clip of a Sesame Street song: