Friday, September 3, 2010

History is alive: Archaeology

Our first week of school has been going great. They are learning. I am whipped.

This first week our history lessons have been about "doing" history. How historians find out what they know. How you can know what happened to your mom when she was little by asking her. And if she doesn't know then you can ask your grandmother, your mother's mother. But to find out what happened to your great-grandmother or her mother? What to do when there is no one to ask. History we've defined as finding letters, journals, and monuments with the stories told in them. If your great-grandmother's mother wrote a friend to tell her about the weather and what that had meant to her and her family, you'd know a lot about your great-grandmother's mother.

But what about people from ancient times? People who didn't know how to write? Archaeologists dig up their broken dishes, tools and toys.

So we became mini-archaeologists.

I buried about 10 items Wednesday night and made a grid from yarn.

We went out to our dig site with clipboards and paper. We drew each item as we uncovered it then came in the house to report on our favorite item and what we might have learned about what archaeologists do. (I learned how to spell archaeology!)

We did not have the correct tools but made do with our God-given diggers (hands) and imaginations.

I told Mr. Wiedz that true archaeologists would likely shake their heads but maybe we learned something.
#2's report of his archaeology lesson

We also discussed that archeologists learned from the animals and bugs that they find too...we had a true experience with that lesson as this guy was part of our dig.

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