My teens are completely excited over Jurassic World coming to theaters June 12- now whether it’s because of the giant dinosaurs or the huge carnage count, I’m not quite sure. However, it’s a wonderful thing to use to tie in to the Collaborative Summer Reading Program’s Every Hero Has a Story and STEAM programming with science and the stories of the characters overcoming the dinosaurs…or some of them at least….
One of the things you can do is show any of the three Jurassic Park movies, especially as the original was remastered and released just last year. The first goes through how they got the DNA for the dinosaurs and the basis for building the park in the first place, and it’s a good thing to have running in the background.
Now I know what you’re thinking- yea yea, dinosaurs, gotcha.
Nope. Go with DNA. Why?
- Dinosaurs have been done before
- The younger kids can do dinosaurs
- Science is cool
- DNA rocks
With one of the huge themes in Jurassic World being DNA and the creation of new dinosaurs, it’s an opportunity to have a whole program built around DNA and DNA experiments.
- Live Science has a way that you can show teens how DNA tests actually get the DNA out of their mouths with household ingredients- just make sure they don’t chug the sports drinks.
- The University of Utah Teach.Genetics lab has an awesome handout on how to make an edible DNA molecule- you can have a healthy one using fruit or a not-so-healthy one using Twizzlers and marshmallows
- Your Genome has DNA sequence bracelets based on butterflies, chimpanzees, carnivorous plants or flesh-eating bacteria
- Your Genome also has instructions for origami DNA which turn out extremely cool
There are also DNA pattern crafts to go with the DNA theme:
- You can let teens let loose with Rainbow Looms and DNA bracelet patterns
- And there are pony bead patterns
- Double Helix cuff for pony beads
- DNA jewelry patterns using wire
- A School of Fish has a good tutorial as well for necklaces
Have fun with the science aspect of everything, and if you really want to play with your teens’ heads, start talking to them about how Chris Pratt’s character in Jurassic World is really Starlord goofing on Earth for a bit. Don’t believe me?
Here’s Starlord in Guardians of the Galaxy:
See the baby lizard?
Now, here he is in Jurassic World:
Baby lizards are now teens following the Starlord.