Family Reading and Science Program

Life through the Ages

FREE Family Science Workshops and Reading program!

Each year the University of Michigan Exhibit Museum of Natural History and the Ann Arbor District Library coordinate their efforts to offer a Winter Family Reading and Science Program. This year’s theme, Life through the Ages, provides families with opportunities to read and learn together about the fossil record and geological time, with an in-depth look at many fascinating organisms. In addition to Winter Family Reading Programs with incentives for participation, and the acquisition of new books related to the history of life through time, many libraries in Washtenaw and Wayne counties will host free family science workshops led by Exhibit Museum educators.

Research shows that children learn more about science when a parent or adult companion participates in their science explorations, and these workshops are a great place to learn! Thanks to the generous support of Pfizer and local libraries, these workshops are free for participating families. This program is ideal for children ages 6-11. Hope to see you there!

Workshop 1- Phenomenal Paleozoic: Out of the Water

Did you know that some of Earth’s most ancient life forms lived under the sea? Make your own jellyfish, one of the oldest sea creatures. Don’t worry, it won’t sting! Excavate aquatic fossils from different rock strata, then date a fossil the way scientists do. Finally, sculpt one of the first four-footed land animals just from its skeleton.

Workshop 2- Magnificent Mesozoic: Into the Air

Did dinosaurs have feathers like birds, or scales like reptiles? Explore the world during the Mesozoic, when dinosaurs roamed the land, and birds first took to the air! Create a rubbing of an archaeopteryx fossil. Discover how a dinosaur might have used feathers, and how different feathers can be. Also, explore the development of dinosaur headgear—how did Triceratops get his horns? Join us and get yours to wear home.

Workshop 3- Sensational Cenozoic: Back to the Sea

What kinds of animals populated the earth after dinosaurs went extinct? Find out how land animals went back to the sea. Discover which animals have changed since the Mesozoic, and which animals still look the same. How does that change happen? Learn how birds are still changing today. Also, create your own whale or whale ancestor, and explore the use of its features: its tail, size, and perhaps even legs!

Workshop Times, Dates, and contact information are available here as a PDF*. Workshops are free, but advance registration is required. Please call the location of your choice directly to register.

* NOTE: You will need Acrobat Reader 6.0 in order to view and print PDFs. All Campus Computing Site computers already have Reader installed.


Calendar of Events

About the Theme

For the Media


Teacher Training Workshops

Youth Group Leader Workshops

School Visits to Explore Evolution Exhibit

Family Reading and
Science Program