Friday, March 24, 2000

School goes prehistoric

Pupils create 'museums' as part of dinosaur course

Enquirer Contributor

        LIBERTY TOWNSHIP — Jordan Griffin's “dinosaur” was an amalgam of household junk: an empty box for the body, toilet paper rolls for feet, an empty wrapping-paper roll for a neck and a 2-liter bottle for the head.

        His was one of 40-plus “junkasaurs” put together by second-graders at Heritage Elementary School. Each child built a dinosaur using household items that might otherwise have been thrown out.

        The “junkasaurs” are part of a display in the school hallway that includes murals depicting the lives of the plant- and meat-eating giants, made by the second-graders with assistance from their sixth-grade buddies. Their work was part of a month-long study of dinosaurs that culminates today with museums in three classrooms.

        “I chose a brachiosaurus because he's tall and so am I,” Jordan, 7, said about his creation.

        “I like studying dinosaurs. It's really fun,” said Blakely Stretch, 8, who used the nozzle of a squirt bottle for the head and an empty syrup bottle for her pteranodon. “The easiest part was the painting and buttons for eyes.”

        On Thursday, students in Alyson Coffman and Pamela Hudson's classrooms opened their museum to parents and other students. Groups of kids in each classroom manned hands-on stations that included a puppet show, Web pages on dinosaurs, games and experiments.

        Mishele Breen, Andy McClure and Nick Gerardi were part of a group in Mrs. Hudson's class that created seven Web pages on dinosaurs that will soon be posted on, Lakota Schools' Web site, and entered in competition at Miami University.

        “We thought it was going to be kind of hard with seven pages,” Andy said. “But it wasn't.”


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