Book Open Access
Archaeological science adopts scientific techniques from different fields, such as biology, chemistry and geology, to the study of the human past. Even though there are many books with archaeological activities for children available, these are restricted to archaeological excavation, typological methods and other 'traditional' archaeological approaches with minimal, if any, reference to archaeological science methods. This is the gap that the current guide aims at filling.
The activities presented focus on familiarising students with basic methods in two broad fields: a) bioarchaeology (the study of organic remains such as human and animal bones), b) archaeological materials and material culture (ceramics, glass, metals, coins and graffiti). The proposed activities are intended for students of different age. For each activity, we provide the age range of the children to be involved; however these ranges are only general approximations and it is up to the teacher to determine which students can participate in each activity or parts of the activity.
Basic information that the teachers/instructors should communicate to the students as part of each activity is provided, along with step-by-step instructions for the implementation of each activity, and printout forms. In this way, the proposed activities can be used by any teacher, with minimal preparation and extra required materials. The implementation of most activities takes between less than one hour to two hours. A key to selected activities is given at the end of this guide.
Through the proposed activities, the students are expected to develop:
- an understanding of the various methods available for reconstructing the human past, and
- critical thinking on how approaches from different disciplines can be used in combination in order to elucidate ancient lifeways.