Khaznat al-Faroun at Petra, Jordan. Photo taken by Calvin College professor Bert DeVries

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Experience Experience
Return to the PETRA homepage April 4, 2005 - August 15, 2005
Lost City of Stone

For Educators: Additional Resources

What does cultural research involve? How are objects studied and conserved? What do you do on a dig? This section draws from the Museum's vast anthropological and archaeological resources to answer these and other questions about studying the human past. The curriculum materials and activities, courtesy of the American Museum of Natural History, include an overview with the State of Michigan's framework for teaching and other standards correlations.

Curriculum Materials

Becoming a Cultural Researcher
Curriculum Materials: Grades Kindergarten through 8
What would an anthropologist make of your toothbrush, your school locker, or a Halloween jack-o-lantern? Examine the material culture and artifacts of your life.


The Ancient City of Petra
Article: Grades 3 and up
Petra was built by Arabian nomads who became very rich as desert traders. But why did these nomadic merchants decide to settle down in one place? Explore the mystery while strolling through Petra's ruins.

Up Close with a Zapotec Urn
Article: Grades 3 and up
It's not easy being an artifact! There's restoration work, touring schedules, and all those people to educate. Uncover a civilization that flourished long before the Aztecs in this urn-est interview.

Anthropological Collections Management
Article: Grades 9 and up
Only about 10 percent of the artifacts in the museum's anthropology division are on view at any one time. Learn how the other 90 percent is tracked, used, and stored.


Tools of the Trade
Activity: Grades 3 and up
How do you find a place that's been lost for more than 300 years? Take up this challenge, and learn what it took for archaeologists to locate a lost mission on a 14,000-acre island near Georgia.

Inca Investigation
Activity: Grades 3 and up
It's your turn to do archaeology! As you investigate what daily life was like in the Inca empire, you have the chance to collect Inca chronicles. Do you have what it takes to collect all six?

If Trash Could Talk
Activity: Grades 3 and up
One person's trash is another person's clue. It's amazing how much you can learn about people just by examining what they throw out. Grab a thick pair of rubber gloves, and dig in!

Map Your World
Activity: Grades 3 and up
Have you ever gotten lost in a new place? Chances are you used a map to find your way. Archaeologists use maps to find their way around an excavation site—but first they have to draw them.

Create Your Own Time Capsule
Activity: Grades 3 and up
In the future, if archaeologists were to dig up artifacts from your life, what would they find? What would these objects tell them about how you lived? Build your own time capsule, and send a tailored message to future generations.

Make an Archaeologist's Field Journal
Activity: Grades 3 and up
Sherlock Holmes had his notebook; Christina Elson has her field journal. Find out how it helps her decipher clues from the past. Then find and analyze artifacts from your life.

What Do You Know About Archaeology?
Activity: Grades 3 and up
How much do you know about what it takes to dig up the past? Examine the details in each question closely to ace this interactive quiz on archaeology.

References »

Waves of sand