My toddler loves her some dinosaurs. That being the case I am often looking for dinosaur related activities for her. We have been to dinosaur parks, made dinosaur eggs, call broccoli dinosaur trees, but her favorite activity was the time we excavated dinosaurs from a block of ice.
I realize in most of the country it is not warm enough to put your kids in a swimsuit and sit them on the porch with ice and a toothbrush, but that is why I live in Texas. Actually, it is not quite warm enough for this here yet either. Don't let a little thing like weather keep your toddler from excavating dinosaurs. This activity can be done in a bathtub too.
Plastic Dinosaur Toys
Blue Food Coloring (optional)
Excavating Tools (toothbrush, squirt bottle, toy hammer, shovel - whatever you have)
The hardest part about this activity was finding the room in my freezer. It works best if you freeze in batches. The plastic dinosaurs will float to the top if you try and freeze the whole tub at once. I added a little blue food coloring to my water for extra excitement.
Once your block of ice is frozen solid pop that baby in the pool or tub and load your toddlers up with tools.
Tallulah soon discovered that water was the best tool of all for freeing her dinosaurs from their icy prison. We had chats about paleontology, melting ice, cold vs. hot - many a good lesson can be learned with this activity.
Tallulah spent a good hour or more working on getting her dinosaurs out which in toddler time is like days.