Friday, July 27, 2012

Archaeology Quest 2

We have had tons of fun this week exploring various archaeological topics, from ancient games to interactions between humans and prehistoric animals!

Looking at the stratigraphy of a site.
On Monday, we did two activities to help us understand how Archaeologists date artifacts. We talked about stratigraphy and cross dating, two archaeological methods in which scientists determine how old an object is, using comparisons with other objects found nearby. We also made time capsules, where we had to analyze the characteristics of another person based on some objects they drew that define their lifestyle. 

Drawing items for our time capsules.

Classifying artifacts.

On Tuesday, we took a field trip to the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology and learned about Rome. We saw a presentation about Roman soldiers, where we even got to try on an ancient Roman helmet! We played a game of knucklebones, and then made our very own Roman Shields.  We looked like quite a troop walking back to the Museum of Natural History with our colorful pieces of  “armor“!
Our Roman Shields!

Our knucklebones score board!

On Wednesday, we got to talk to two Archaeologists who work here at the Museum of Anthropology! John showed us some bull skulls and showed us how people used to hunt them by chasing them off cliffs. Lisa showed us some pieces of pottery, and we talked about how they were made and what we can learn about ancient cultures by studying their artifacts. We also looked at “grave goods”, which are items buried with people in their graves. We tried to determine what type of person was buried based on the goods buried with them.
John talking to us about animal bones.

Lisa talking to us about pottery.

Measuring how big the bowl was that this piece of pottery came from.

Looking at grave goods.

Todd from the Kelsey showing us ancient writing.

On Thursday, we went back to the Kelsey Museum, but this time we talked about writing in the ancient world. We took a tour of the galleries and made cylinder seals and stamps out of clay. We even got a chance to play with some ancient toys and look at Roman code sticks!

Making our cylinder seals.

Making rock art!
We ended the week with some exciting activities about the Ice Age! We learned about human interactions with mammoths and mastodons, and made casts of a Clovis Point, a type of tool used by the Clovis culture to hunt mastodons. We saw some stone tools, including rope axes and a mano and metate, and talked about how civilizations used them.Then we made rock art, mimicking how ancient civilizations made cave paintings!

We even got a little messy!

We had so much fun this week and hope your children did too! We look forward to seeing some of you back for Ecology and Science Sampler camp starting  next week!

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