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Brookfield PROJECT

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The children of Brookfield in helping to design their own local history learning used "free-choice" planning and "object-orientated" classroom activities. Based on the previous choice selections we set up three separate investigation stations all with corresponding activity and question sheets. (Available upon request) The class was broken into three teams that rotated through all investigation stations.

The three stations were:

Station #1- Archaeological Grid

Carol Ferris Liasson explains mapping, site maps, and field logs.
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Mapping, measuring and writing field notes on objects in the grid.
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Using masking tape we created a grid system on the floor of the classroom. Objects were then placed in the grids, and we asked the children to find and place on their grid activity sheet the objects from the grid floor squares. Placement on the sheets—required measuring, recording their "finds", using a compass to figure out direction. Also field notes were written to describe when rocks, minerals, or soils (which were placed in grid beforehand) added any valuable information.

Station #2- Object Mystery-Where You Get To Be The Detective!

Having chosen their mystery object, children are asked to identify what they think the object could be.
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A table is filled with mysterious objects, most of these objects would be difficult to identify based solely on their looks. Using an activity guide and sheet, prompt questions are asked to make the children think about material types, function, and most importantly the ability to place the object into a contextual framework. Such questions as:

  • What do you think this is made of?
  • What could it have been used for?
  • Who may have used this?
  • Measure your object for: Length? Width? Height?
  • Now weigh your object.
  • Now —answer and explain on your sheet "who and how" you think this was used. What happened to get it into the ground? Where is this from? Hold old would you guess this object to be?

STATION #3- Pottery Puzzle Pieces

Ruth Elzey helping children piece back together 19th c. pottery fragments.
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Each child was given a bag that contained broken shards of pottery. Using broken plates and bowl pieces, the children wearing gloves, and working with glue and masking tape had to re-piece the pottery pieces back into their original form.