On Friday April 20th, Charlotte and three of her school friends travelled to London to sleep at the Natural History Museum’s DinoSnore as part of Charlotte’s 10th birthday (sponsored by KinderHotels). We were entertained from the moment the doors opened until lights went out at midnight then from breakfast until the museum opened. The fun (and learning!) never stopped. There was about 150-200 children and occupying adults.
Charlotte named her group the Skull and Crossbones and after setting up camp directly under Dippy we were assigned several activities throughout the night. First, we had to find the green dinosaurs in the Dinosaur room. Each Green dinosaur had a clue and we need to add the clues together to find the answer to the riddle. Sounds easy, until we were told it was in the dark and we only had torches to help us! It was VERY Night at the Museum especially when one of the animatronics dinosaur roared when we walked by it! While the kids did their thing, I was doing everything to hold back tears of joy for FINALLY be in Natural History Museum at night.
After snacks, we were sent on our second mission: to make our own fossil! This was done in the Palaeontology lab that isn’t normally open to the public. We used an ammonite to create an impressed into Plasticine which we then poured plaster over. We used the Latin name to label them and we got to take them home with us. Having a hands on task was perfect timing after the running around from the first task. During this session, we not only learned about fossils and how they are made, but we also made plaster of paris ourselves in a plastic bag – real science!
The evening didn’t stop there though! We then went to Monster of the Deep show where a scientist showed us the wonders that live in the sea/ocean (and more reason for me never to go on a cruise!). We were shown interesting and amazing creatures that leave in the waters and learned how they survive (or not). The most impressive was the Giant Squid which the Natural History Museum has one in their collection. The kids then got to see exactly how big a Baby Giant Squid is when they were asked to help hold a stuffed version of one! I personally was impressed with the vocabulary and knowledge coming from the kids when asked questioned from the presenters.
It was soon lights out. However, waking up in the Central Hall with Dippy was brilliant! We had our breakfast then were entertained with Stu the Animal Man who had a wide assortment of animals and reptiles that they were allowed to touch/hold.
Currently, Natural History Museum is fund raising to update Central Hall with I Love Dippy Campaign (which you can see Charlotte and myself claming our love for the Dippy and NHM on the video. ) We were able to tweet (and donate) a message to Dippy to see on the screen under Dippy. Sleeping RIGHT next to Dippy, this was something we had to do.
Charlotte, 10 said ‘It was something that I’ll always remember. My favourite part was when we got to make our own fossil in the Palaeontology lab. I also loved seeing my name on the I Love Dippy screen!”
It was certainly a dream come true for me!