Educational Resources

Educational Resources provided by the Tate Geological Museum:

Museum Outreach

A group tour makes a great field trip for any class. Be it at the end of a unit, or as an introductory look into what students will be studying in class, a tour of the Tate Geological Museum is a wonderful addition to any lesson plan. We have a wealth of specimens and fossil casts that students can handle and examine during their visit. Open access at the Fossil Preparation Lab window gives students a chance to see some of the “behind the scenes” operations you don’t always get to see at every museum. If you’d like a more interactive visit to the museum, we also have scavenger hunts for students. We can also incorporate an educational activity, such as determining the weight of dinosaurs, learning how fossils form, and fun with plate tectonics and food  into the visit, giving students a chance to get more involved with their museum visit.

It is best to schedule your tour or classroom visit as far in advance as possible to ensure you get the day and time that best fits your schedule.

Not sure if you will be able to make it to the museum? We can bring the museum to you! Tate staff can bring rocks, fossils, minerals and dinosaurs into your classroom and present on whatever topic best fits your curriculum. Museum staff arrive with a number of materials, from fossil casts to the real thing, and always have plenty of hands-on items to be passed around the room. Our Education Specialist can also accompany you on a variety of field trips including guided trips to Casper Mountain, Alcova and other geology or fossil focused destinations. We also have a selection of Teaching Trunks filled with a great variety of specimens, fossil casts, books, posters and many other resources that can be checked out for use in the classroom.

Call today to make your appointment!
800-442-2963, ext. 2447

Scavenger Hunt

Do you want your visit to the Tate Geological Museum to be more interactive? Try to answer all of these questions while you’re here!

  1. During which epoch did Dee live?
  2. Were mammoths herbivores, omnivores, or carnivores? How do we know this?
  3. Who has a bigger brain, humans or Tyrannosaurus rex?
  4. What product mined in Wyoming is used in kitty litter?
  5. Where was Wyoming located during the Cambrian period?
  6. Describe the climate in Wyoming during Eocene time. How do we know this?
  7. On the touch table is a fossil that might be described as the “Milky Way.” What kind of fossil is this and what part are you seeing in the rock?
  8. Name the three types of meteorites. Which is most common?
  9. Name the two types of jade.
  10. Which Oligocene animal has a tooth shaped like the Greek letter pi?
  11. Name one Triceratops bone on exhibit.
  12. What is a theropod? How many toes do they have?
  13. What shape are the scales on a gar?
  14. Where was Dee’s skull found? Describe a hypothesis as to why the skull was not near the rest of the skeleton.
  15. What was Ben’s BIg Turtle’s last meal?
  16. What is the chemical formula for Stibnite? Is it a silicate or non-silicate mineral?
  17. What was one of the largest predators of the White River badlands?
  18. What marine animal had the largest eye of any vertebrate?
  19. What kind of animal is “Twinkle Toes?”
  20. During what era was the granite that makes up the core of Casper Mountain formed?
  21. What kind of teeth does a whale need to eat a mixed diet? Use the whale wheel to help answer this question. Can Basilosaurus eat a mixed diet?
  22. What type of animal is Oomtar? Where was he discovered?
  23. What do the dark gray circular areas on Dee’s skull indicate?

Print a version of this scavenger hunt (with spaces for answers) for your Tate Museum visit. (PDF)

We encourage you to come on in to the museum and try the scavenger hunt, but if you must know the answers… (PDF)

Teaching Trunks

The trunks are currently under construction to better meet the needs of current curriculum. The old trunks are still available for check out, though. Please call the museum at 307-268-2447 to reserve your trunk today!

Virtual Field Trips
Prehistoric FAQs
Here are some of the most Frequently Asked Questions at the Tate Museum.
If you have a question that isn’t on this list, feel free to email it to: Russell Hawley, Education Specialist,

  1. Was Tyrannosaurus rex a predator or a scavenger?
    Answer to question #1
  2. Why did the dinosaurs become extinct?
    Answer to question #2
  3. Did birds really evolve from dinosaurs?
    Answer to question #3
  4. Were dinosaurs warm-blooded or cold-blooded?
    Answer to question #4
  5. How fast was Velociraptor?
    Answer to question #5
  6. How big was Velociraptor?
    Answer to question #6
  7. How smart was Velociraptor?
    Answer to question #7
  8. Is it true that if you don’t move, a Tyrannosaurus can’t see you?
    Answer to question #8
  9. Why isn’t a plesiosaur a dinosaur?
    Answer to question #9
  10. What was the biggest dinosaur?
    Answer to question #10
  11. Why did they change the name of Brontosaurus to Apatosaurus? Is it because they had attached the wrong head to the wrong skeleton?
    Answer to question #11
  12. What’s the difference between an ammonite and a nautiloid?
    Answer to question #12
  13. How big was a pterodactyl?
    Answer to question #13
  14. How can you tell real gold apart from fool’s gold?
    Answer to question #14
  15. What was the fastest dinosaur? It was Velociraptor, right?
    Answer to question #15
  16. How can we tell what dinosaurs ate?
    Answer to question #16
  17. What’s the difference between Allosaurus and Tyrannosaurus?
    Answer to question #17
  18. What kinds of sounds did dinosaurs make?
    Answer to question #18
    Listen to an example of a Parahorn
  19. What color were dinosaurs?
    Answer to question #19
  20. Wyoming used to be under the ocean, right? When was that?
    Answer to question #20
  21. Where did the fossils in the Tate Museum come from? Are any of them from Wyoming?
    Answer to question #21
  22. Did Dilophosaurus really spit poison?
    Answer to question #22
  23. How can we tell how old dinosaur bones are?
    Answer to question #23
  24. Why don’t you have the real Tyrannosaurus rex skull on display?
    Answer to question #24
  25. What was the smallest dinosaur?
    Answer to question #25
  26. Which state has the most dinosaur fossils?
    Answer to question #26
  27. Is it true that Spinosaurus was really bigger than Tyrannosaurus rex?
    Answer to question #27