The following modules are designed for students in preschool-3rd grade. Scroll down to see lessons for grades 4-8.
Bones in ancient Ashkelon:
Animal bones are often found during archeological excavations. Small fragments of bones, intact bones, and complete skeletons of various animals are found in Ashkelon. This module addresses what type of archeologist looks at the bones found, what types of bones are being found and why they are important to understanding life in ancient Ashkelon.
Floors in ancient Ashkelon:
Finding the floor of an ancient building is a crucial step in archaeology. This module focuses on the types of floors found at Ashkelon, how a floor is identified, and how the floors may be different depending on the type of room they belong to.
Jewelry in ancient Ashkelon:
Pieces of jewelry are frequently found in Ashkelon. Beads, pieces of ivory, and metal fragments that were used as jewelry are found when excavators dig through dirt in a room, or even in a collection of ancient garbage. This module teaches about the types of jewelry found, what it tells us about life in ancient Ashkelon, and how it differs and relates to modern day jewelry.
Loom weights in ancient Ashkelon:
Loom weights were used in ancient civilizations to hold thread straight when making cloth or fabric. The loom weights found in Ashkelon were usually made out of clay. This module describes how cloth is made-a common activity in ancient Ashkelon.
Oil lamps in ancient Ashkelon:
Ancient oil lamps are simple pieces of pottery that were used to provide light and heat in homes. How oil lamps were used, decorated, and how they changed over time are discussed in this module.
Oil lamps in ancient Ashkelon (Pt. 2):
Philistine homes in ancient Ashkelon:
This module introduces houses of the Philistine period. The presence of preserved building foundations allows archeologists to determine what Philistine homes looked like and how they arranged different types of rooms in their homes.
Pottery in ancient Ashkelon:
Pottery is the most common item archeologists find in Ashkelon. While broken fragments of pottery are most commonly found, archeologists also dig up intact vessels. This module will discuss what archeologists can learn from a single piece of broken pottery, what types of pottery are found in Ashkelon, and what that teaches us about the lives of people in ancient Ashkelon.
Rocks in ancient Ashkelon:
Rocks, and the ways ancient people used them, is an important part of archeology. With the help of staff geologists in Ashkelon, this module focuses on the types of rocks that are found at Ashkelon and how they were used in ancient Ashkelon.
Toys and Games in ancient Ashkelon
The following modules are designed for students in grades 4-8
Using the Scientific Method in Archaeology:
How do archaeologists determine where in Ashkelon they are going to dig? They use the scientific method! This module will show you how the scientific method is used in practice while in the field.
Carbon Dating and Infrared Light:
Many times in the field, archaeologists find things that they don't know what it is. Scientists come in to test the soil and use an infrared light to determine what that object is! They also can take the soil samples back to the lab to determine the age of the object using carbon dating. This module has you examine the concept of half life and how to find pre or post mass of an object.
Float Sampling, Soil Composition, and Seed Extraction:
Knowing what the soil we collect is composed of can tell us a lot about a location. One example of what we can learn is seeing what the people in that area might have eaten based on the seeds collected. Another thing we may learn is what the area on top of the soil was used for, such as cooking or metal working, if we find charcoal or metal sherds. This module has you examine the soil around you to see what you can learn from it.
Erosion, Deposition, and Lithification:
Being near the coast can cause problems for people living there who depend on a stable coast line. Water is very powerful and can change the way rocks appear in a process called erosion. After the sand has been washed away and deposited in other places, lithification can occur and new rock is formed. This module has you examine the process of lithification.
Law of Superposition:
As rocks and sand are eroded from one area and carried to another, they settle in a process called deposition. Over time, these layers of sediment are compacted to form new layers of sedimentary rock. In this module, you will learn about the Law of Superposition which tells scientists the order these layers have formed over time.
Coastal Erosion and Deposition:
When you have large moving water sources, such as the Mediterranean Sea, the water can erode the shoreline and cause damage to landscapes in the area. In this module, you will learn about man-made and natural ways to slow this process.
Physical Anthropology and Bioarchaeology:
Archaeologists don't just look at artifacts to piece together how a civilization used to live-they also sometimes look at the skeletons found in the area to see what people ate and if they had any body modification customs (like head elongation). In this module, you learn about how archaeologists look at bones to help create a story, and how this information can be used to find out about civilizations around you!
One of the most important things that archaeologists want to know about a civilization is what they ate. In Askelon, they different foods during different time periods because of the influence from different cultures. In this module, you will learn about how zooarchaeologists look at bones found in the dig site to determine the diet of the people who lived there.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Triangulation:
Archaeologists spend lots of time in the field collecting location data of objects so that maps can be built and time periods can be mapped. (This is especially true when different depths can mean we are in different time periods!) In this module, you will learn the basics of how GIS information is collected in the field and how you can collect location data in your own home.
Photo: 3D Image of Grid 51 Made with GIS Cameras (Hint, in order to see this, you need to right click and drag down until the grid is in the scene. If you want to zoom in, right click and drag up. You can left click to rotate your view)
Archaeology Near You:
Archaeology isn't just something that happens far away from you, there are dig sites all over the United States! In this module, you will hear one of our volunteer archaeologists tell you about his job in Colorado and you will research archaeology sites near where you live.
Many students use microscopes in their classrooms, but why? How can they be used outside of school? This module explores how microscopes can be used in the field to help determine more information about the populations that used to live there.
Pottery Rim Sizing and Geometry:
Did you know that archaeologists can tell a lot about a pot by just finding part of a rim? They are able to see how big the rest of the pot might be and if it is a closed or open vessel. This module will have you look at the circumference of circles and how they relate to other measurements within that circle.
Using calendar dating in Ashkelon:
There are many ways that archaeologists record years. Did you know that when talking about the calendar, AD does not stand for "after death"? In this module, you will learn about how dates are used in Western calendars, as well as examples of dating from other calendars in different counties.
Learning about where pottery came from is very important to a dig site because it allows us to see who people traded with and what they ate and drank. In Ashkelon, we are studying Greek pottery to see when the earliest trade began with Greece and how that trade took place throughout the rest of Israel. In this module, you will learn about the different types of Greek pottery and how you can make your own!
Bronze and Iron Ages:
In Ashkelon, time periods can be represented in two different ways: who lived there at the time, and what their available technology was at that time. In this module, you will be looking at the Bronze and Iron ages in Ashkelon, as well as comparing major technological advances to your own life.
Tools used in Ashkelon:
If you look in the previous module, different technology existed in the different time periods. In this module, you will look at tools used in Ashkelon throughout different time periods made from rocks and bones.
Did you know that magnetic north is not always in the same location? It shifts through years, and scientists are able to take readings to help date objects and compare these magnetic north fields to the current north field. In this module, you will be looking at how rocks that contain these magnetic components are made and how convection currents move plates, causing the shift in the magnetic reading.