Dinosaur Detectives

Books to Share

  • Big Old Bones: A Dinosaur Tale by Carol & David Carrick.
  • Bones, Bones, Dinosaur Bones by Byron Barton.
  • Digging Up Dinosaurs by Aliki.
  • Dinosaur Bones by Bob Barner.
  • Where to Look For A Dinosaur by Bernard Most.

Books to Show and Booktalk

  • Archaeologists Dig For Clues by Kate Duke.
  • Dinosaur Bones by Aliki.
  • Dinosaur Hunters by Kate McMullan.
  • Fossil Factory by Nile Eldredge.
  • Rare Treasure: Mary Anning and Her Remarkable Discoveries by Don Brown.
  • Stone Girl, Bone Girl: Story of Mary Anning by Laurence Anholt.

Bulletin Board

Dig Up A Good Read

Enlarge and copy the dinosaur bones using the patterns here. List titles and call numbers of dinosaur books on the bones. Place the bones randomly on a brown background and add plastic shovels. Center the slogan, "Dig Up a Good Read", on the bulletin board.


Ask a local group to display fossils.


As children enter the storytime area, give them a nametag in the shape of a dinosaur.



(Adapted by Leila Raven Parrish)

Do you suppose a dinosaur (Reach toward ceiling on tiptoe)

Who is tall-tall-tall-tall,

Could ever be a little child

Who is small-small-small? (Crouch down)

But the little child who is tiny

Will try-try-try

To reach up to the dinosaur (Reach toward ceiling)

Who is high-high-high.


Read poems from Tyrannosarous Was A Beast by Jack Prelutsky.

Puppet Play

"The Mysterious Egg" in One-Person Puppet Plays by Denise Anton Wright.


Paper Plate Dinosaur


  • Dinosaur patterns
  • Large paper plate
  • Green construction paper
  • Glue
  • Stapler


Pre-cut the dinosaur legs, tail, and body from patterns. Fold the paper plate in half. Staple the body inside the folded paper plate with the head at one end and the tail on the other end. Glue or staple the two legs to the bottom of plate where it is folded.


Dinosaur Dig

Photocopy the dinosaur bones pattern (body and arms, legs, tail) on card stock. Cut them out and place one set in a shallow container. Cover with small pebbles, sand, or rice. Give children paint brushes and/or plastic spoons and let them uncover the bones. After finding them, children can reconstruct their dinosaur. For a large group activity, enlarge the bones and copy several sets on different colors of card stock. Place only one or two bones in numerous containers, bury as above, and let the children find them. The children then reconstruct the dinosaurs as a group.

Guest Speaker

Invite a paleontologist or a member of a local rock and mineral society to bring fossils to show to the preschoolers and give a simple talk about fossils and prehistoric plants and animals.

Audio Recordings

  • "When I Was A Dinosaur" on Big Trouble by Trout Fishing in America.
  • "If I Had A Dinosaur" on Singable Songs Collection by Raffi.

Web Sites

Dinosaur Game

Dinosaur Maze

Professional Resource

Tyrannosarous Was A Beast by Jack Prelutsky.


Texas Reading Club 2003 Programming Manual / Mission Possible Spy Book!

Published by the Library Development Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Page last modified: June 14, 2011