Awesome Archaeology

 

Bones, stones, gold doubloons, mummies, and a chance to grub around in the dirt…what’s not to like about archaeology?

 

BOOKS: All About Archaeology

 imgres In Kate Duke’s Archaeologists Dig for Clues (HarperCollins, 1996), one of the Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out Science series, three kids and their pets accompany Sophie, an archaeologist, on a dig, asking questions every step of the way. A nice introduction to archaeology for ages 4-8.
 imgres-1 Mark Dubrowski and Cathy East Dubrowski’s Ice Mummy (Random House Books for Young Readers, 1998) in the “Step into Reading” series is the story of the 5000-year-old man found frozen in Alpine ice by a pair of hikers in 1991. Dubbed Otzi, this is Europe’s oldest natural human mummy. For ages 5-9.
 images-1 For older readers, see National Geographic’s Last Hours of the Iceman and NOVA’s Ice Mummies.
 imgres-2 Also for young archaeologists in the “Step Into Reading” series, see Edith Kunhardt Davis’s Pompeii…Buried Alive (1987), Judy Donnelly’s Tut’s Mummy: Lost…and Found (1988), and Mark Dubrowski’s Discovery in the Cave (2010).
 imgres-4 Jane O’Connor’s Hidden Army (Grosset & Dunlap, 2011) is the story of ancient China’s fabulous army of 7000 life-sized clay soldiers, discovered by farmers in 1974. For ages 5-8.
 imgres-5 Anne Millard’s A Street Through Time (Dorling Kindersley, 1996) is a series of wonderful panoramic drawings of the same riverside European location in fourteen different time periods, from 10,000 BCE – a Stone-Age hunters’ camp – to modern times. (An additional feature for readers: find the Where’s-Waldo-type hidden time traveler.) Archaeology in a nutshell, for all ages.
 imgres-6 Philip Steele’s A City Through Time (Dorling Kindersley, 2013) might better be called Cities Through Time – the idea is the same, but, unlike Anne Millard’s Street, these are clearly different cities. Readers progress from a Greek colony in 550 BCE to a Roman city, a medieval city (with detailed castle), a 19th-century industrial port, and finally a modern metropolis (with cutaway view of skyscraper). Included are annotated timelines with historical info. For ages 7-12.
 images Peter Kent’s City Across Time (Kingfisher, 2010) tracks an imaginary European city from the Stone Age to the present, with detailed drawings of what’s going on both above and below ground. As time moves on, today’s buildings and people become tomorrow’s rubble and bones. For ages 7-11.
 imgres-7 By Fran Hawk, The Story of the H.L. Hunley and Queenie’s Coin (Sleeping Bear Press, 2011) is the story of the Confederate submarine H.L. Hunley, sunk during the Civil War, and recovered by marine archaeologists in 2000. For ages 7-12.
The Friends of the Hunley website has histories of the submarine and its crews, maps, photos of artifacts, a Hunley simulator, lesson plans and activities (K-college), and more.
 imgres-8 In the Eyewitness series, Archeology (Dorling Kindersley, 2000) is organized as a series of double-page spreads, covering such topics as “Preservation and decay,” “Looking at the landscape,” “All kinds of documents,” and “Buildings of the past.” Gorgeously illustrated with photographs of archaeological artifacts. For ages 8 and up.
 imgres-9 Other Eyewitness books of potential interest to young archaeologists include Ancient China (2005), North American Indian (2005), Mesopotamia (2007), Ancient Greece (2007), Ancient Rome (2008), Ancient Egypt (2008), and Aztec, Inca, and Maya (2011). (Check out a reasonably complete list here.) For ages 8 and up.
  imgres-10 Susan E. Goodman’s Stones, Bones, and Petroglyphs (Atheneum, 1998) is a photo-illustrated overview of southwestern archaeology and the ancient Anasazi (or Puebloans) for ages 8-12.
 imgres-11 By Peter Lourie, The Lost World of the Anasazi: Exploring the Mysteries of Chaco Canyon (Boyds Mills Press, 2007) is a photo-illustrated account of the ancient Pueblo people of the American southwest, their mysterious disappearance in the 13th century, and the clues left behind at Chaco Canyon. For ages 9-12.
 imgres-12 Anthony Aveni’s Buried Beneath Us: Discovering the Ancient Cities of the Americas (Roaring Brook Press, 2013) begins with the discovery – by startled electrical workers – of the fabulous Aztec capital, Tenochtitlan, beneath the streets of Mexico City. An information-packed and interesting read for ages 9-12.
 imgres-13 James Deem’s Bodies From the Ash: Life and Death in Ancient Pompeii (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2005) is an enthralling account of what was once one of the largest cities in the Roman Empire, destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79. The book describes what happened in the wake of the eruption and how archaeologists rediscovered the city. Illustrated with many photographs of excavations, artifacts, bones, and plaster molds of victims. Starred reviews. For ages 9-13.
 imgres-14 Also by Deem in the same format, see Bodies from the Ice (HMH, 2008) and Bodies from the Bog (HMH, 2003).
 imgres-15 Ilene Cooper’s The Dead Sea Scrolls (HarperCollins, 1997) is the story of what has been called the “greatest archaeological discovery of the twentieth century:” a collection of over 900 ancient texts, discovered in the Qumran Cave on the shore of Israel’s Dead Sea.  Cooper discusses the history and significance of the scrolls, and how they were found and reconstructed by archaeologists. For ages 10 and up.
 imgres-16 Digital Dead Sea Scrolls has images of the scrolls online with historical background information.
 imgres-17 The National Geographic Investigates Ancient Civilizations series is a collection of 64-page books on the archaeology and history of ancient cultures worldwide, each with maps, timelines, interviews with researchers, and gorgeous color photographs. Titles include Ancient Maya, Ancient Pueblo, Ancient China, Ancient Africa, Ancient Celts, and more. For ages 10 and up.
 imgres-18 Marc Aronson’s If Stones Could Speak (National Geographic Children’s Books, 2010) is an award-winning account of the archaeology of Stonehenge, demonstrating how archaeologists work to solve ancient puzzles.  A recent hypothesis is that Stonehenge was a memorial to honor the dead, with a sister complex made of wood for the living. A fascinating read, illustrated with color photographs, for ages 10 and up.
From Smithsonian magazine, New Light on Stonehenge discusses the site’s history and summarizes recent research.
 imgres-19 David Macaulay’s Ship (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1993) begins with a crew of underwater archaeologists recovering a sunken 15th-century ship from a reef near the Bahamas, then leaps back in time to follow the building of the ship and its eventual demise. Fictitious, but historically accurate; illustrated with terrific detailed architectural drawings. For ages 10 and up.
 images-2 Similar and equally wonderful books by Macaulay include Pyramid (HMH, 1982), Castle (HMH, 1982), Cathedral (Sandpiper, 1981), Mill (HMH, 1989), Mosque (HMH, 2008), and City (HMH, 1983) – this last “A Story of Roman Planning and Construction.”
 imgres-20 By Simon Adams, Archaeology Detectives (Barron’s Educational Series, 2009) is the story of great archaeologists and archaeological discoveries worldwide, illustrated with color photographs. Among the sites featured are India’s Mohenjo-Daro, the tomb of Tutankhamun, China’s terracotta warriors, Pompeii, and the palace of Knossos. For ages 10 and up.
 imgres-21 Annual Editions: Archaeology (McGraw-Hill Higher Education, 2012) is one of the extensive Annual Editions series, each of which is a collection of reader-friendly articles from popular magazines, newspapers, and books related to a specific topic. The Archaeology volume, for example, contains 38 articles on a wide range of archaeological topics, among them “All the King’s Sons” from the New Yorker, “Lost City of the Maya” from Smithsonian, “Uncovering America’s Pyramid Builders” from Discover, and “Lost Cities of the Amazon” from Scientific American. An excellent resource for teenagers and adults.
 imgres-27 By Johannes Loubser, Archaeology the Comic (Altamira Press, 2003) is an introductory archaeology text in the form of a graphic novel. The book follows the adventures of Squizee, a teenager and would-be archaeologist, and her mentor, a museum archaeologist named Dr. Holmes. Various chapters cover excavation techniques, dating methods, artifact cataloging and analysis, and a host of archaeological studies and controversies. A nice presentation for teenagers and adults.
 imgres-23 C.W. Ceram’s archaeological classic, Gods, Graves, and Scholars (Bantam, 1976), is an information-filled tale of adventure, romance, history, and science. The book is divided into four main sections: “The Book of the Statues,” which covers Pompeii, Troy, Mycenae, and Crete; “The Book of the Pyramids” (Egypt); “The Book of the Towers” (Assyria, Babylonia, and Sumeria); and “The Book of the Temples” (Aztecs, Mayas, and Toltecs). Chapters have such irresistible titles as “Evans: Crete and the Minotaur,” “Champollion: Treason and Hieroglyphics,” and “Layard: A Dilettante Outwits a Pasha.” A great read for teenagers and adults.
 imgres-24 Michael Wood’s books – chatty and addictive mixes of archaeology and history – include In Search of the Dark Ages (BBC Books, 2007), In Search of the Trojan War (University of California Press, 1998), In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great (University of California Press, 2001), and In Search of England (University of California Press, 2001). Wood’s titles have all (or almost all) been made into excellent film documentaries, available on DVD.
  images-3 James Deetz’s In Small Things Forgotten (Anchor Books, 1996) surveys the archaeology of early American life as revealed through such small and often-forgotten artifacts as doors and porches, chairs, grave markers, and pottery shards. A classic for teenagers and adults.
 imgres-25 Ivor Noel Hume’s Martin’s Hundred (University of Virginia Press, 1991) is a fascinating account of the excavation of Martin’s Hundred, a 17th-century English settlement in Virginia. Hume, for many years director of archaeological research at Colonial Williamsburg, is a terrific writer and the author of many excellent books on archaeology. For teenagers and adults.
 imgres-26 Brian Fagan’s Time Detectives (Simon & Schuster, 1996) is a detailed account of how modern archaeologists use technology. (“Today archaeologists can identify Chinese silk from a single fabric strand, conjure up ancient landscapes from handfuls of tiny seeds and pollen grains, and use carbon isotopes to reconstruct prehistoric diets.”) The science behind the archaeology for teenagers and adults.

INDIANA JONES AND CO.

 images-4 Isabel Soto – dauntless archaeologist and world explorer – is the star of a series of graphic novels published by Capstone Press’s Graphic Library. Titles, variously by Terry Collins and Agnieszka Biskup, include Egypt’s Mysterious Pyramids, Uncovering Mummies, Escape from Pompeii, The Mesa Verde Cliff Dwellers, and Exploring Titanic. (Isabel also occasionally goes farther afield, as in Tracking Bigfoot and Searching for UFOs.) For ages 8 and up.
 imgres-28 In Caroline Ludovici’s The Obsidian Mask (Infinity Publishing, 2011), Natasha and Alex join their archaeologist mother at a dig near Medinabad, where the researchers have just unearthed an obsidian mask, once owned by an ancient Mesopotamian warrior queen. The story begins in 3000 BCE, then leaps to the (adventure-crammed) present day. The first of a trilogy for ages 10 and up.
 imgres-29 In David Macaulay’s Motel of the Mysteries (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1979), the year is 4022 and archaeologist Howard Carson is excavating what he believes to be a sacred burial chamber, lying just past a crumbling DO NOT DISTURB sign hung on an ancient doorknob. A clever spoof for ages 12 and up.
 imgres-30 Elizabeth Peters’s Crocodiles on the Sandbank (Grand Central Publishing, 2013) is the first of an extensive mystery series set in the late 19th century and starring feisty Egyptologist Amelia Peabody. (The author knows her stuff; she herself has a doctorate in Egyptology.) Among the subsequent titles are The Curse of the Pharaohs, The Mummy Case, and Lion in the Valley. Fun and exciting reads for teenagers and adults.
 imgres-31 Several of Agatha Christie’s mysteries have archaeological themes. (Christie’s husband, Max Mallowan, was an archaeologist.) See Inspired by Archaeology for information and book descriptions. Christie’s Murder in Mesopotamia, for example, is set on an archaeological dig in Ur.
 images-5 “Dr. Indiana Jones is worse at recovering precious items than a magpie stuffed with explosives.” 8 Famous Fictional Archaeologists Who Suck at Their Job is a snarky overview of archaeologists in the movies for teenagers and adults.
 imgres-32 Michael Crichton’s Timeline (Ballantine Books, 2003) is a fast-paced thriller that pairs archaeologists, excavations of 14th-century French castles, the Hundred Years’ War, and a time machine. For teenagers and adults.
 images-6 Future archaeology. In outer space. Check out this list of 10 Space Archaeology Novels You Must Read.

MAGAZINES

 imgres-33 Dig, Cobblestone Publishing’s terrific archaeology and history magazine for kids, is packed with informational articles, illustrations, news, and activities. Sample issue titles include “Dogs: In the Beginning They Were Wolves,” “America’s First Cities,” “Amazing Earth Paintings,” and “Digging in the Valley of the Kings.” An annual subscription (nine issues) costs about $30; individual back issues are available for $6.95 apiece. For ages 9-14.
 imgres-42 Calliope, Cobblestone’s 52-page magazine of “World History for Young People,” also often features archaeological or ancient civilization themes. Sample issue titles include “The Aztecs,” “The Assyrians,” “The Babylonians,” and “Buried by Vesuvius.” An annual subscription (nine issues) costs about $30; individual back issues are available for $6.95 apiece. For ages 9-14.
 imgres-35 Archaeology magazine, published bimonthly by the Archaeological Institute of America, is aimed at adults and has a fairly sophisticated text, but the pictures – all in color – are great for persons of all ages. Each issue includes several feature articles about archaeological discoveries worldwide. An annual subscription costs about $15.

ARCHAEOLOGY ONLINE AND ON SCREEN

 images-7 In the Science Museum of Minnesota’s Maya Adventure, kids explore prominent Mayan archaeological sites.
 ruins-chaco-canyon In Annenberg Learner’s Collapse: Why Do Civilizations Fall?, students explore the fall of four major civilizations – the Maya, Mesopotamia, Chaco Canyon, and the west African kingdoms of Mali and Songhai. Included are interactive activities and an extensive resource list.
 imgres-36 In the PBS series Time Team America, archaeologists race to excavate historic sites around the nation. Visitors to the website can watch full episodes and access lots of helpful supplementary information.
 imgres-37 The idea for Time Team America came from the BBC’s reality TV series Time Team. For example, check out Time Team: Unearthing the Roman Invasion, a 12-part archaeological adventure on DVD.
 imgres-38 The History Channel’s Digging for Truth series, starring Josh Bernstein, deals with unsolved historical and archaeological mysteries, and each episode – after site visits, interviews with researchers, and investigation – ends with a working hypothesis. Titles include “Hunt for the Lost Ark,” “Secrets of the Nazca Lines,” “Mystery of the Anasazi,” “The Real Temple of Doom,” and “Roanoke: The Lost Colony.” Available on DVD or as Amazon Instant Videos.
 imgres-39 From PBS, the Secrets of the Dead series is an exciting mix of forensic science, archaeology, and history. Episode titles include Bones of the Buddha, Ultimate Tut, Caveman Cold Case, and Blackbeard’s Lost Ship. (View online or available on DVD.) Click on “Educators” at the website for lesson plans to accompany the episodes, aimed at middle- and high-school-level students.
 imgres-40 NOVA’s five-part Secrets of Lost Empires series includes “Medieval Siege,” “Pharaoh’s Obelisk,” “Easter Island,” “Roman Bath,” and “China Bridge.” The website has online teacher’s guides, background information, and creative activities.
 imgres-41 NOVA’s Mystery of the First Americans explores the discovery and controversy surrounding the 9000-year-old skeleton of Kennewick Man. The website has a teacher’s guide, supplementary information, and “The Dating Game,” an interactive explanation of radiocarbon dating.
Romancing the Stones is an interesting article from the European Journal of Archaeology on “Archaeology in Popular Cinema.” (There are problems.)
 images-8 Dig-It Games, founded by a professional archaeologist/middle-school teacher, makes archaeology-themed video games for kids, designed to promote puzzle- and problem-solving skills (and some history learning). Titles so far include Roman Town and Mayan Mysteries. For Mac, PC, and mobile devices.

ARCHAEOLOGISTS AND TREASURE HUNTERS

 imgres-43 Mike Venezia’s Mary Leakey: Archaeologist Who Really Dug Her Work (Children’s Press, 2009) is a delightful introductory biography of one of the foremost contributors to the history of human evolution, illustrated with photographs and clever little cartoons. For ages 5-9.
 imgres-44 By Laura Amy Schlitz, The Hero Schliemann: The Dreamer Who Dug for Troy (Candlewick, 2013) is a great 80-page biography of the problematic amateur archaeologist who found the ancient city of Troy. For ages 9-13.
 imgres-45 Paul Bahn’s The Great Archaeologists (Southwater, 2009) is a 96-page composite biography of 47 famous archaeologists, illustrated with color photographs.
 imgres-46 Vandal, thief – or undeservedly neglected archaeologist? Ivor Noel Hume’s Belzoni: The Giant Archaeologists Love to Hate (University of Virginia Press, 2011) is the biography of the early 19th-century Italian circus strongman Giovanni Belzoni who became one of the first Egyptologists. (Certainly he was the largest – 6’6” tall – and the most flamboyant). For teenagers and adults.
 images-9 The Great Belzoni is a great 50-minute film version of Belzoni’s life.
Who Owns Archaeological Artifacts? Just because you dug it up, doesn’t mean you get to take it home. Read all about it.
 imgres-47 Sharon Waxman’s Loot: The Battle Over the Stolen Treasures of the Ancient World (Times Books, 2009) pairs trips to famous museums with visits to the countries where some of their most famous exhibits originated, dealing with the thorny question of who owns what. (Should the Elgin marbles go back to Greece?) An interesting topic for teenagers and adults.

ALMOST LIKE BEING THERE

 imgres-48 Stefania Perring’s Then & Now (Macmillan General Reference, 1991) is a collection of photographs of twenty famous ancient sites as they appear today paired with overlays of an artist’s reconstruction of what each site looked like originally. Included are the Parthenon, Machu Picchu, Pompeii, Angkor Wat, the Minoan palace of Knossos, and more. For all ages.
 imgres-49 Odyssey Online is a beautifully designed museum site in which visitors can explore the Near East, Egypt, Greece, Rome, Africa, and the ancient Americas. Learn about people, mythology, daily life, death and burial, writing, and archaeology; click on artifacts to discover their histories; access maps; and find lists of books and helpful websites. A terrific resource.
 imgres-50 National Geographic’s Archaeology site has a gorgeous slide show on the history and practice of archaeology. See Machu Picchu, the Sphinx, Minoan art, Pompeii, and much more.
 imgres-51 Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur is an account of Leonard Woolley’s excavation of the ancient Sumerian city of Ur with a slide show of some of the fabulous artifacts found there.
 images-10 Teotihuacan: City of the Gods is an online photographic tour of the famous Mexican first-century religious center, featuring Pyramids of the Sun and Moon.
 imgres-52 The Anasazi Heritage Center website has an artifact gallery, an overview of Anasazi archaeological sites, and detailed info on the history and culture of the Anasazi.
 imgres-53 The Ancient City of Athens is a photo archive of ancient Greek buildings and archaeological sites. Check out the Acropolis.
 imgres-54 In this interactive game at Montreal’s Pointe-a-Calliere Museum website, visitors can become virtual archaeologists, digging through history to Montreal’s Stone Age past. (In English or French.) (Click on “Explore.”)
 hsc00a At Smith College’s Museum of Ancient Inventions, visitors click on color photographs of (many) artifacts to learn all about them. For example, check out a Sumerian lyre, a cuneiform cylinder seal, and an Aztec calendar wheel.

PROJECTS, PUZZLES, LESSON PLANS, AND ACTIVITIES

 imgres-55 Richard Panchyk’s Archaeology for Kids (Chicago Review Press, 2001) is a survey of archaeology, variously covering how archaeology works, human evolution, the Ice Age and the Neolithic, the first civilizations, ancient Greece and Rome, the New World, and historical archaeology. Included are maps and diagrams, photos, a timeline, and a helpful bibliography. There are also 25 hands-on projects, among them calculating height from a footprint mold, analyzing soil, practicing dendrochronology by counting tree rings, playing a seriation game (with photos of old cars), and making an ancient-Greek-style oil lamp. For ages 9 and up.
 imgres-56 John White’s Hands-On Archaeology (Prufrock Press, 2006), an informational collection of “Hands-On Activities for Kids,” has a wealth of projects based on site research, excavation, field records, artifact preparation and cataloging, and more. Included are a lengthy appendix of teacher resources and reproducible forms and worksheets. For ages 9 and up.
 imgres-57 By Steve Daniels and Nicholas David, The Archaeology Workbook (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1982) is a collection of thirteen detailed fictional archaeological puzzles intended to accompany an introductory college archaeology course.  Challenging for older teenagers and adults with some archaeology background.
 imgres-59 From the University of Minnesota, Archaeological Methods has detailed background information, illustrations, instructions, and activities for introducing preschoolers and early-elementary-level kids to archaeology. Kids discover “What Bones Can Tell Us” (in detail; find out all about pelvic bones and skulls and assemble skeleton puzzles), and practice stratigraphy with chocolate pudding, gummy worms, and Oreos.
 imgres-58 From teacher Mr. Donn’s website, Archaeology for Kids is packed with kid-friendly information (What is an archaeologist? How do archaeologists find sites to explore?), along with short biographies of famous archaeologists, games, quizzes, and interactive activities.
 imgres-60 What to do with pottery shards? In Archeology Game, kids decorate clay flower pots, smash them (gently; you don’t want smithereens) in a paper bag, and then re-assemble them with glue, archaeologist-style.
 images-11 For kids, the Colonial Williamsburg Archaeological Research page has general information about archaeology, a couple of archaeology-based hands-on activities, and a gallery of children’s artifacts.
 imgres-61 Archaeology and Mysteries Activities has projects, puzzles, and simulations for young archaeologists of a wide range of ages. Titles include The Great Cheese Mystery, The Mystery of Tollund Man, and Discovering Richard III.
 imgres-62 From the Guardian Teacher Network, Archaeology Teaching Resources is a collection of free downloadable lesson plans and projects. Sample titles are “How to mummify an orange,” “How to make and excavate fake poo,” “Investigating historic buildings,” and “The Roman box.”
 imgres-63 The Archaeological Institute of America has a great series of AIA Lesson Plans, variously for grades K-12, with complete instructions. Sample titles are Aztec Codex, Greek Vase Painting, Layer Cake Archaeology, and Shoebox Dig.
 imgres-64 From the Smithsonian, Decoding the Past is an illustrated, printable, three-lesson introduction to archaeology in which kids learn to identify and interpret artifacts, and date soil layers. For ages 9 and up.
 imgres-66 Dirt Detective in an animated interactive game in which kids learn about archaeological techniques with the help of a mole in an Indian-Jones-style hat.
 imgres-67 From the BBC, Archaeology is an information-packed and reader-friendly site, covering various subtypes of archaeology (including battlefield, aerial, and marine), archaeological techniques, artifacts, reconstructions, and excavations. Work through it all and test your knowledge with interactive quizzes.
 imgres-68 The Investigate Archaeology Files are a collection of free downloadable lessons and projects, among them Greek Writing, Make a Roman Sandal, Crop Marks, Historic Poo, Rot or Not, and Maths in a Monastery.
 images-12 The Society for American Archaeology has lesson plans, simulated archaeological dig projects, online archaeological adventures, and more for a range of ages. (Click on “For the Public.”) For example, Archaeologyland is a collection of hands-on archaeology-based activities for ages 5 and up, in which kids replicate pottery designs, make a pot puzzle, create petroglyphs, make a cordage bracelet, and more.
 imgres-69 Interact – a division of Social Studies School Service – publishes simulations that encourage kids to learn by doing. Click on “World History” to find simulations of interest to young archaeologists, among them Dig, in which participants divide into two groups, invent a civilization, and then fabricate artifacts and create a “dig” for the opposing team to excavate. Diggers then attempt to re-create the civilization of the opposite team from the archaeological evidence. For ages 12 and up.

COOL KITS AND GAMES

 imgres-70 With the Archaeology Pyramid Dig kit, kids use hammer, brush, chisel, and sponge to excavate a model pyramid containing a sarcophagus (with mummy) and an assortment of canopic urns. Included is an illustrated informational manual with additional activities. About $20. For ages 8 and up.
 imgres-71 For the outdoor archaeologist, the Coleman Kids Archaeologist Kit has the basic tools of the trade – magnifying glass, sifter/trowel, tweezers, brush, and notebook – all packaged in a handy bag with pockets and a shoulder strap. About $24. For ages 6-10.
 imgres-65 Use the Archaeology Adventure Dig Activity Kit from Nature Watch to set up a complete (simulated) native American dig site, equipped with pottery shards, arrowheads, beads, and animal bones. The kit includes a good-sized screen for sifting and sorting findings and a detailed instructor’s guide. (Extra dig components can be ordered for larger group digs.) About $70. Can be used for a wide range of ages.
 imgres-72 In Archaeology: The Card Game, players take on the role of archaeologists – well, treasure hunters – competing to complete collections of pots, parchments, and artifacts to sell to museums (while combatting thieves and sandstorms). For 2 to 4 players, ages 8 and up.
 imgres-73 From LEGO, archaeology-themed games – which players first build with Lego blocks, then play – include Ramses Pyramid, Ramses Return, and Minotaurus. Each comes with blocks and instructions, microfigures, and a buildable Lego die. For ages 8 and up.

REAL DIGS AND CITIZEN SCIENCE

 imgres-74 Finally, for those eager to get out in the field, armed with trowel, teaspoon, and paintbrush, and dig, the Archaeological Institute of America publishes the Archaeological Fieldwork Opportunities Bulletin (AFOB), a detailed list of digs, field schools, and programs with positions for volunteers or students. (The bad part: You don’t get to keep anything you find. The good part: It’s the finding that’s the most fun.)
 images-13 From the USDA Forest Service, Passport in Time is a long list of volunteer archaeological fieldwork and historical preservation opportunities at Forest Service-sponsored sites around the United States. (Cool family vacation.)
imgres Ancient Lives is a citizen science project in which participants help decode ancient Greek papyri. An online tutorial shows you what to do.

Also see ANCIENT EGYPT.

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One Comment

  1. Kristin Polston
    Posted August 29, 2013 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    This is great! Thank you from me and my budding archaeologist!

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