Dinosaur Bones

We can learn about different dinosaurs by looking at their fossilised remains from millions of years ago. Build your own dinosaur skeleton to make a realistic fossil design.

Dinosaur Bones

Skill Level


Time to Make

2 hours + drying time for glue and paint

Adult Supervision Needed


How to Make

  1. Cut a piece of thick card from a cardboard box, approximately A3 size. Cut off the corners then cut the sides into an irregular or zigzag shape for the rock background.
  2. Roughly draw out the position of the bones in the middle of the background. Draw a curve for the spine then add the position for the legs and head.
  3. To make the 3D spine, tie a double knot one the end of a 40cm piece of string. Start threading beads onto the string until you have a 20- 25cm threaded length. Place the beads over the pencil spine to check the size, adding or remove beads if you need to, then glue the beads onto the background by applying the glue onto the card and pressing the string on top. Leave to dry.
  4. Draw a simple dinosaur head onto a polystyrene sheet, cut it out then glue onto the background.
    Cut more polystyrene pieces for the hip and pelvic bones then glue in place on the background. To make thicker bone shapes, add another layer of polystyrene.
    Poke an eye hole into the head with the end of a brush.
  5. Glue more pieces onto the background to build up the skeleton shape. Glue short bamboo pieces for the thinner bones on the legs, ribs and the end of the tail. You could also use pieces cut from a drinking straw or macaroni and other pasta shapes. Use plenty glue for sticking the pieces in place. Leave to dry.
  6. To add more levels to the rock, cut out some simple shapes from the left over background card. Glue the card pieces around the dinosaur. Leave to dry.
  7. Brush PVA glue over the dinosaur and background then press some dark coloured tissue paper over the top. Use the glue brush to press the tissue down over the raised dinosaur and rock shapes. If the tissue paper splits, this can easily be covered with paint in the next step. Leave to dry. Fold and glue any overhanging tissue paper pieces over the edges of the background.
  8. Mix some grey paint for the background using mainly white with a small amount of black. Brush the paint around the dinosaur shape to cover the rock background. Use a small brush to paint in between he bones then leave to dry. Mix up a darker grey paint, quickly brush it over the rocks then rub off with some paper towel, leaving some of the paint to highlight the rock texture.
  9. Lightly brush grey or white paint over the dinosaur to highlight the bones.
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Top Tip

Look at some different dinosaur shapes to create a collection of fossil designs for a class project.

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