games · PROJECTS · realia · RUMBO IN ATLANTA · Sandbox

Dinosaurs. Discovering hidden skeletons (even in the dark!)

Versión en español aquí

This session belongs to Lesson 2. Leotolda

Are you a real explorer with archeologist skills? Then you will have to demonstrate it through the terrific activities that we have for you today. Ready? These skeletons are really hidden under the soil but, that’s not all! This backbone… where should it go? Is it a Tyrannosaurus?! Mmm… ¿Triceratops?.. What a challenge!!

But wait, that’s not all! Will you be able to find them in the dark?

Imagen PicMonkey. Dinosaurs

Our kids are always ready to decipher enigmas. Even more if that means let’s play with sand!! Here you will find a funny activity for our sand box to learn about archeology and dinosaurs at the same time that we develop our fine and gross psychomotor skills, problem-solving skills, team work, logical thinking, verbal skills and thousands more. Ready?? Let’s dig!!

Prepare the skeleton-puzzle

I use this material in my Lesson Plan Rumbo in Atlanta. In this Lesson Plan we learn about diversity through Spanish as the Second Language. That’s why , in the second session, after reading the book of Leotolda, we become an archeologist. Super easy to do and they just love it!! How to do it?

Imagen PicMonkey. Step 1


  • Print the dinosaurs’ skeletons. You can download them here.
  • Stick each of them in a cardboard with different colors.
  • Cut the skeletons making different shapes and laminate them. Take into account the age and number of students you have in your class to make sure that at least each of them have one piece.

Note: The reason why we stick different color cardboards is because while doing the activity, it promotes problem-solving skills in teams. When they have the piece in their hands they will think, mmm, where should I start? The answer will be found in their backside of their piece, by looking for the ones that have the same color. If it is too easy, you can always put the pieces from the skeleton side in the floor, to make them think even more!

Sand box 

It’s time to play! Hide the pieces in the sand box. You will see how they feel real archeologist when putting their hands in the sand. It’s an easy way to stimulate their sense of touch and motivate them to become real explorers!

Imagen PicMonkey. Part 3

Give them the time that they need to solve the puzzle while you are reinforcing their language skills by asking questions during the activity Which color are you? Which part of the body do you have? Let’s find the bones, let’s make a skeleton. 

Guess the dinosaur

When they are so encourage, learning should continue! Introduce dinosaur toys in a bag or under a piece of fabric, one by one, and ask them to touch it, to analyze the main features and see if they can guess to which skeleton that dinosaur corresponds to. This can help them to develop their symbolic thinking and the correspondence image-reality.

Imagen PicMonkey. Paso 3

X-Ray. Dinosaurs in the dark (this is my favorite part) 


  • Color painting
  • Highlighter inks (yellow or orange)
  • UV light. Find it in Amazon in the following link.

Firstly, we are going to paint. In my case, following the story of Leotolda, we are going to paint our dinosaur with three colors (blue, pink and yellow) but you can use anyone.

Once we have finished, give to each child a highlighter ink, yellow or orange. I just want to add that it doesn’t work with normal markers. We are going to ask them to draw a skeleton over their painting. And now…

Connect the light to a lamp… Make a circle around it with your drawings… Close blinds… Turn on the lamp… Turn off the light of the class… and… find the skeletons in the dark!!!!

Uv Dinosaur. Leotolda


Do you have more ideas to work with dinosaurs? Other storybooks? Pics from your kids’ creations and experiences?

Share them! We will love to publish them here!

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