Dinosaurs come alive for pupils

(Pretoria) – Grade 10 pupils from three of Pretoria’s historically disadvantaged high schools have relived the age of dinosaurs, thanks to an interactive DinosAlive Exhibition at Forest Hill City shopping centre in Centurion – a first exhibition of its kind for Pretoria.

GOOD NEWS: The age of dinosaurs comes to life at Forest Hill City shopping centre in Centurion with the DinosAlive exhibition from March 10 to April 17.

One hundred sponsored life sciences pupils from Seshegong, Olievenhoutbosch and Steve Tshwete secondary schools were among the thousands of visitors to get up close to these prehistoric creatures during its five-week expo, which wraps at on April 17.

Forest Hill City general manager Annah Moremela said the centre management team was looking forward to hosting this eye-opening exhibition, which featured 25 animatronic dinosaurs that blink, move their limbs and emit lifelike sounds. The moving models include the well-known Tyrannosaurus Rex and Triceratops as well as lesser-known species such as Spinosaurus and Ankylosaurus.

“For us as a mall, it perfectly captures our twin objectives of providing great family entertainment and supporting education in our community.”

Moremela said the Grade 10 pupils had been specifically selected, as the history of the earth formed a core component of the life sciences syllabus.

“For pupils at under-resourced schools, the expo makes learning come alive in a fun, real and interactive way, and there will be special info boards to explain concepts like the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. “Every info board contains a QR code linked to a We Chat application – scanning the code provides access to audio files with more info on each dinosaur.”

A fossil display from the University of the Witwatersrand and a 20-minute movie about dinosaurs roaming the American national parks completed the educational experience, she said.

“But aside from that, it’s an amazing adventure for the whole family – and a great way to spend the day during the school holidays.”

Younger members of the family could look forward to “meeting” a baby dino, riding on a T.Rex’s back and having their faces painted like their favourite species, added Moremela.

“There’s also an excavation sand pit, where kids can dig for ‘dino bones’ like a real palaeontologist.”

The exhibition runs from March 10 to April 17 and is open daily between 9am and 7pm from Tuesday to Sunday. Tickets are available from Computicket or at the door. Family discounts and block bookings for schools apply.