“I bet not many of you were thinking that when looking for treasure we will need to learn about maps. But archeologists need to know many skills, and reading and understanding maps is certainly one of the most important,” said Ed Lawless, an archeologist from the British Museum in London, England to a group of Jefferson Middle School students.
Jefferson, Persell and Washington Middle School sixth grade students had the unique opportunity to learn more about archeology through a distance learning experience with the British Museum. Students were led though a “treasure hunt” and learned more about the Treasure Act that was passed in England. They divided up into teams to do an “archeological dig” and discover the tools archeologist use. They looked at Roman coins and decoded them, determining whether the coin is actual “treasure” or not. Through the knowledge learned about the Treasure Act, students decided who would own the treasure. They learned the process of an archeological dig from beginning to end. Sixth graders study Ancient Civilization in social studies so the distance learning activity with the British Museum fit perfectly into their curriculum.
“It is such a cool opportunity for our students to learn about archeology from an expert at the British Museum,” said Jefferson sixth grade teacher Lisa Offhaus. “Something like this is important because it opens students’ eyes up to the greater, wider world. It makes them aware of other opportunities in other areas. It opens their eyes to different occupations and how the skills they are learning in school can apply to real-life, and to their future.”
JPS Social Studies Curriculum Coordinator Jeff Kresge and JPS Instructional Coach Jayme Genco helped provide technology and academic support for the distance learning opportunity.