Hands on Ancient Civilizations Archaeology Activity Hands on Ancient Civilizations Archaeology Activity is a post from Bekki @ A Better Way to Homeschool where we learn to train our children to become lifelong learners. If you have enjoyed this post, be sure to follow Bekki on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+! Up until a few weeks ago, I honestly couldn’t spell archaeology. I would get lost as soon as I typed that “ae” in the middle. As an introduction to ancient civilizations with our boys we decided to do an introduction unit on archaeology. We had so much fun I wanted to share it with you. 1. I gathered about a dozen random items from around the house. They were everything from plastic bottle caps to a vegetable peeler. I tried to keep them hidden from the boys as I collected “future artifacts”. 2. We went to the library and checked out some great archaeology books. My favorites in this batch were Eyewitness Archaeology and Digging up the Past. 3. We watched the Young Indiana Jones on Netflix and some of Indiana Jones. We wanted the boys to glean the mystery and adventure behind the “finds”. (They did) 4. When they were not watching, I buried our artifacts in a shallow tub and placed it on the side of the yard. 5. I casually mentioned they needed to get shoes, socks and a hat. “I had just received news that an artifact was discovered in our yard” and they were going to conduct the dig. 6. We gathered tools: a screen sifter (we have one for gold panning, but you could make one with screening material. It is important to sift through the dirt so you do not miss anything), hand shovels, ribbon to make quadrants in our dig site, paper and pencil to record our finds, and a camera. Oh, I almost forgot. Real walkie-talkies. These were the highlight. 7. I sent them out to locate the dig site. Ok, at first they were devastated that there was a staged tub of dirt. The youngest almost cried because he was ready to get a back hoe and tear up the grass!! 8. Once they embraced the activity: we split the tub into quarters. I had them divide their papers into quarters. We numbered and labelled each quarter on our data sheet and then divided the dig site. the oldest chose the deepest dirt of course. 9. The rules. The kids would carefully remove dirt until they uncovered something. Then they were required to switch to toothbrushes. They had to carefully brush away dirt until the artifact could be seen. Next they had to sketch the item on their data sheet in the position it was found, then they could remove it and continue digging. They LOVED this activity after they recovered from the fact that mom staged it. Follow up activities that we are still completing. 1. They need to catalogue their finds. We will take a picture of each artifact and carefully describe (in writing) everything about the item and indicate exactly where it was found. 2. We will review the 7 aspects of culture. Arts and Literature, Customs and traditions, Economic Systems, Forms of Government, Language, Religion, Social Organization. The boys will then create an educated guess about each artifact (ignoring its true life purpose they will create a new one) and create a chart that has each artifact fit into one of the 7 aspects of Culture. What did we cover? Math: Charting Reading History: 7 Aspects of Culture, Intro into Ancient Civilizations Science: Archaeology Writing: descriptive and creative writing Art: sketching real life objects This is a very full project. We spent 2 weeks so far and will take another week to wrap up the writing portion (maybe 2 weeks depending on life). (If I had a chance to do it again I’d get theses two books: How about you? Have you done any amazing hands on archaeology projects? Free Notebooking Pages Product Sampler from NotebookingPages.com. Preview of the Heart of Homeschooling God’s Way Master Class. We need to STOP measuring success by grades, achievements, awards, and worksheets.