Huffpost Parents

Table Talk: Scientists Discover New Chicken-Like Dinosaur

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This illustration provided by the Carnegie Museum of Natural History on March 18, 2014 shows the dinosaur Anzu wyliei. The birdlike animal, about 7 feet tall, weighed an estimated 500 pounds when it roamed western North America around 66-68 million years ago. Nicknamed the "chicken from hell," the creature was formally introduced with an official name to the scientific community Wednesday, March 19, 2104 as scientists published a description and analysis of its anatomy. (AP Photo/Carnegie Museum | ASSOCIATED PRESS

This week's Family Dinner Table Talk, from HuffPost and The Family Dinner book:

Topic: The discovery of the Anzu wyliei dinosaur

Story to read: "Chicken From Hell" Dinosaur Discovered In The Dakotas

What to say to your kids: After studying skeletons found in the Dakotas, paleontologists -- scientists who study fossils -- recently discovered a 66-million-year-old dinosaur called Anzu wyliei. They say it's one of the largest North American feathered dinosaurs. Our friends at HuffPost Science report: "Researchers ... determined that A. wyliei likely sported a crest and feathery forelimbs. It also had a long neck, a short, thick tail, and killer claws. The dinosaur was more than 11 feet long and weighed around 440 to 660 pounds." In other words, it looked like a gigantic chicken.

Questions for discussion:

  • Do you have a favorite dinosaur?
  • How do you think scientists are able to discover a dinosaur's age?
  • Why is it important for paleontologists to keep digging for fossils?

In her cookbook, The Family Dinner, Laurie David talks about the importance of families making a ritual of sitting down to dinner together, and how family dinners offer a great opportunity for meaningful discussions about the day's news. "Dinner," she says, "is as much about digestible conversation as it is about delicious food."

We couldn't agree more. So HuffPost has joined with Laurie and every Friday afternoon, just in time for dinner, our editors highlight one of the most compelling news stories of the week -- stories that will spark a lively discussion among the whole family.