Today was our first full day at Dinosaur National Monument. Truth be told, I didn’t even know Dinosaur National Monument was here before we started planning for this road trip. Holy smokes, everyone should visit this place!
We started out the day by sleeping in. (YUSSS!) After quite a few really busy days with late nights, we all slept in until about 10 o’clock. Amazing.
After prying myself out of bed, I took a few photos around the campground. Here’s our site.
We talked about dinosaurs and history over breakfast, packed lunches, then went to the National Monument. We picked the entrance near Jensen, UT because that’s where the wall-o-dinosaur bones is at the quarry near the Visitor’s Center.
After doing some learning at the Visitor’s Center, we took the tram up to the quarry. I was expecting it to be cool, but the 150 million year old, football-field-long wall of dinosaur fossils blew everyone’s minds.
The designated area where you could touch real dinosaur fossils still embedded in rock was one of the many great learning areas for the kids.
Did I mention that the wall of fossils was amazing?
There were plenty of teaching exhibits that the kids loved and that worked great for teaching them about life at various stages of earth’s history.
One thing I haven’t been good at so far in the trip is teaching the kids photography. However, today they both spent lots of time today capturing things they thought were interesting with a couple different cameras while I gave them pointers.
The National Park Service Junior Ranger Program is a really great learning program. They had workbooks and lessons for the kids that they loved doing.
After finishing the Junior Ranger program, they even got sworn in as Junior Park Rangers. (“….and I promise to eat all of my green vegetables.”)
The Visitor’s Center was a great place to start – especially this homeschooling field trip.
After leaving there, we started on the road tour of the area. There were plenty 1000 year old petroglyphs and pictographs (of weird alien-lookin’ things….what were they smoking?).
The views from the drive were great. Several of the turn offs had info boards that worked to reinforce teaching points for the kids. (Also, don’t fall off the edge, kids.)
We spent quite a bit of time down by the Green River near Split Mountain. It was amazing to be able to see more than 150 million years worth of history all at once.
The photography lessons continued throughout the day…
Today was jam packed with learning for Cameron and Sophia, but we’ll be back tomorrow for lots more!