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Intrigue of the Past Workshops

Intrigue of the Past workshops bring archaeology to life and ensure optimal use of the activity guide.  Participants discover the science of archaeology and its applications in their classrooms by doing Intrigue lessons designed to teach basic concepts and principles.  Each workshop is led by a facilitator team made up of a teacher/educator and a professional archaeologist.  Participants engage in discussions and activities regarding the ethics of archaeological site protection and Native American perspectives on archaeological site preservation.  Workshops are routinely evaluated for content and instructional quality.

Kentucky Project Archaeology currently offers one Intrigue of the Past workshop annually.  All Intrigue lessons are aligned to KERA learning goals and academic expectations

The Intrigue of the Past activity guide contains 28 classroom-tested lessons that use history and archaeology to teach science, math, history, social studies, art, language arts, and higher-level thinking skills, such as problem solving, synthesis, and evaluation.  Lessons address multiple learning and teaching styles and include many hands-on activities.  All lessons are either self-contained, or require only readily available materials.  Students confront archaeological preservation and stewardship problems and propose solutions through discussion, debate, and problem solving. Each state's content materials provide information about local archaeology and history.

The activity guide is divided into three sections.  The first, Fundamental Concepts, covers the basic concepts needed to understand archaeological inquiry and interpretation: observation, inference, context, chronology, classification, culture, and scientific inquiry.  The second, The Process of Archaeology, simulates the profession of archaeology including data gathering and analysis.  The final section, Issues in Archaeology, presents students with issues surrounding archaeological resource protection and provides opportunities for forming opinions about site stewardship and active citizenship.

State content materials are designed to supplement the Intrigue activity guide.  They include information about local prehistory and history, corresponding lessons or suggestions for classroom activities, and a guide to local resources/resource people.

What Happens at a Kentucky Project Archaeology Intrigue of the Past Workshop?

A Kentucky Project Archaeology Intrigue of the Past workshop lasts two or two-and-a half days. The longer workshops include the option to excavate at a site under the supervision of professional archaeologists for half a day.

Each workshop has either a prehistoric or historic content focus. Workshop content is also localized, playing to the strengths and unique characteristics of each workshop venue and to the surrounding local or regional archaeological resources. By localizing our workshops, we hope that teachers will incorporate into their lesson plans future trips to these places.

A team of two facilitators, an archaeologist and an educator, leads our workshops. They model the hands-on lessons in Intrigue, by first covering the basic concepts needed to understand archaeological inquiry and interpretation. Then, depending on the workshop theme, they cover lessons targeting archaeological process, such as gridding a site, data gathering, and analysis.  During each workshop, they also review Kentucky content related to the workshop's focus; discuss issues in archaeology, such as stewardship and ethics, and the laws surrounding archaeological resource protection; and take attendees on a fieldtrip to a local site.  All Intrigue lessons are aligned to  the Kentucky Core Content/Program of Studies.

Attendees receive a copy of Intrigue of the Past, as well as well as a diverse assortment of other handouts and Kentucky content resources, such as posters, booklets, books, curricula, articles, and lesson plans.  Attendees also automatically become ANTs (Archaeology Education Network Teachers), members of the Kentucky Archaeology Education Network, an e-network developed in 1993 to link interested teachers with the resources and resource people they need to teach about archaeology, Kentucky prehistory, Kentucky history, and the lifeways of past Kentuckians.  The Network also periodically informs ANTs of any news, developments, or events in Kentucky archaeology.

PD credit is available to workshop participants.  In recent years, we have been fortunate that Riverside, The Farnsley-Moremen Landing, has defrayed the costs of workshop registration.