Which of the dinosaurs in the article would you most like to see in person? Why?
The article mentions that the dinosaur displays have been updated using current research. Do you think this is important? Why or why not?
According to the article, the T. rex skeleton is the "bold centerpiece" for the new Fossil Hall. Do you think it is the best choice to be featured? If so, why? If not, what do you think should be featured there instead?
In addition to displaying skeletons, what do you think would be the best ways to teach visitors about dinosaurs and other ancient specimens at the National Museum of Natural History's new fossil hall? What features would you include to target different types of visitors including parents, children, and tourists from different countries?
- Invite students to explore the National Museum of Natural History's new David H. Koch Hall of Fossils-Deep Time exhibition site. Make sure they watch the video so they learn what the exhibition includes and why it is different.
- Instruct students to select their favorite aspect of the new exhibit and write a brief summary describing what it is and why it appeals to them.
- Then have students discuss the type of person who would be most likely to travel to the museum to see this exhibit in person. Encourage them to brainstorm ideas about how they could reach that target audience and influence their travel plans.
- Give students time to create a television or social media advertisement that would entice people to visit the NMNH's new fossil hall exhibition this coming summer. Encourage them to incorporate their own favorite part of the exhibit into their promotional campaigns.
CUSTOMIZE THE LESSON:
Hidden among the dinosaurs and megafauna, are these small details that make “Deep Time” all the more impressive. Read this Smithsonian magazine article to learn more about the new Fossil Hall.
In 1988, amateur fossil hunter Kathy Wankel made an unusual and extremely valuable find while on a family camping trip in Montana. Review this Smithsonian site to learn more about her discovery—now the centerpiece of the National Museum of Natural History’s new Fossil Hall.
Before the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. could close its Dinosaur hall for a five-year renovation, the resident dinosaurs needed to be removed. Watch this Smithsonian Insider video to learn how a highly specialized crew dismantled a meat-eating dinosaur called Allosaurus piece by piece.
In this Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum unit, elementary science, library, computer and art teachers can collaborate as students learn about Paleozoic times, conduct research to learn about specific dinosaurs and then capitalize on their computer skills to build a three-dimensional papier mâché model of a dinosaur.
Use this collection of Smithsonian videos, lessons, posters and more to teach middle school students key concepts related to fossils and how they form.
What caused the large dinosaurs to go extinct? Join Kirk Johnson a paleobotanist and Saint Director of the National Museum of Natural History in this Smithsonian Science How webcast as he explores the extinction and recovery stories told by fossils found at the Hell creek Formation in North Dakota. Examine evidence for the causes, the consequences and the aftermath of the mass extinction for life on Earth.
In this video from the National Museum of Natural History, scientist Dr. Nick Pyenson explains how paleontologists get information about what dinosaurs and other extinct animals ate. Comparing modern to fossil dentition, he shows what types and arrangements of teeth tell you about diet.
The question may sound like a “duh,” but it gets to the heart of how we categorize and define nature. Read this Smithsonian magazine article to learn why.