Project Archaeology Makes a Difference: The Next 25 Years

Part of: Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015)

If every citizen understood archaeology and worked for the protection of sites and artifacts, how would it change the profession of archaeology? How would it change education? How would it change the world? Project Archaeology began in 1990 as an anti-vandalism education program for the state of Utah. Since then it has grown to serve 36 states and District of Columbia with archaeology education. More than 12,000 educators have participated in professional development events and used high-quality education materials in their classrooms or learning venues. Project Archaeology has grown far beyond its anti-vandalism roots and seeks to teach a deep conceptual understanding of scientific and historical inquiry, stewardship that is based on deep cultural understanding, and a long-term view of what it means to be human. This symposium traces the history of the program from its infancy to national acclaim and looks forward to a future of broad and deep impact on archaeology, education, and the human condition.

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  • Documents (8)

  • Archaeology and the Common Core: Bay Farm School and UC Berkeley (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Nancy Ely. Alyssa Scott.

    Archaeology provides an amazing vehicle for teaching the Common Core and engaging students in lessons across the curricula, while emphasizing teaching for deep understanding of big ideas or broad concepts. Social sciences, history, and science easily find avenues for collaboration, while students use language arts and math skills to analyze and apply data, as well as to write reports. Archaeological inquiry may be used to understand the human past, employing such tools as observation, inference,...

  • Making History Relevant and Sustainable: Listening to Descendant Communities through Collaboration and Partnership (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Crystal Alegria. Shane Doyle.

    Project Archaeology is a heritage education organization devoted to curriculum development that gives students the tools to better understand the cultural landscape of the world they live in. One of our main goals is to collaborate and partner with descendant communities in all that we do to research, develop, and implement our programs. In this paper we will outline our collaborative theory and practice, and our goals to encourage multiple ways of knowing, validate tribal history, and support...

  • National Network: the Strength of Project Archaeology (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Courtney Agenten.

    We estimate that 275,000 students each year learn about archaeology and protecting the human past through Project Archaeology’s high-quality educational materials. In 2009, I was lucky to attend a Project Archaeology workshop at the Little Bighorn Battlefield, living in a tipi for a week and studying how to engage my students in discovering the culture and history of the Crow tribe. The workshop was taught by a passionate, knowledgeable archaeology educator and I was hooked! The next year, I...

  • Project Archaeology in the Classroom: Aptos Middle School and the Presidio (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Rebecca Pollack. Jules McKnight.

    What happens when teachers and students engage with project archeology curriculum materials in the classroom ? What happens when students investigate archaeological and historical sites using the process archaeological inquiry? Critical thinking, inquiry, and interdisciplinary investigation are the hall marks of Project Archeology curriculum material. students at Aptos Middle School in San francisco, learned archaeological inquiry in their classroom and applied it to a real archeological site. ...

  • Project Archaeology’s Role in the Rise of Heritage Education in the United States (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Margaret Heath. Maureen Malloy.

    Archaeology education has been a part of archaeological practice in the U.S. for the past 30 years and is firmly rooted in the discipline's widely shared belief that public education about archaeology is key to protecting and preserving sites. But archaeology education has broadened to encompass educational goals and cultural heritage values that are much broader than only site protection. The goals of Project Archaeology--which began collaboratively in Utah to combat site looting and...

  • The Times Are Changing: Project Archaeology Makes a Difference (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Jeanne Moe.

    Over the last 25 years, Project Archaeology has had a profound impact on educators, students, and archaeologists. Project Archaeology curricular materials and professional development have shown teachers how to transform their teaching into inquiry learning in all subjects. Students have developed deep cultural understanding of the Native peoples who have inhabited our nation before Europeans came to these shores and are still here today. These students demonstrate a profound respect for all...

  • What Could Archaeology’s Impact Be On Education? (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only A. Gwynn Henderson. Linda S. Levstik.

    Twenty-five years from now, as America’s educators put into place yet another "new" set of standards, and classroom teachers endure yet another pedagogical adjustment, will archaeology be at the table, included as an appendix, or invisible? Predicting the future is risky business, but the intrigue of the past never fails to engage learners. It’s our responsibility as educators to nurture that engagement and channel it toward understanding. Drawing from the preliminary results of a piloting...

  • Where Are We Going? The Impact of Project Archaeology on the Profession, Past and Future (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Eleanor King. Stephen Epstein.

    Over its 25 years, Project Archaeology has helped revolutionize not only how we teach archaeology in pre-collegiate and other settings, but also how professional archaeologists look at public engagement. The program’s original objective was to prevent looting by inculcating a sense of stewardship in children. Its initial success made it the profession’s premier outreach instrument. As various states adapted Project Archaeology to different regional audiences, it became clear that the deep...