American Anthropological Society (AAA) provides a number of teaching materials on their website. The website hosts a Teaching Materials Exchange whereby instructors can post syllabi, assignments, and lesson plans for a range of topics and grade levels. This material is searchable to the public for implementation in the classroom.
They also provide a link to the eHRAF files. The online Human Area Relation Files are databases containing information on a wide range of cultures past and present. The HRAF is maintained by Yale University. The SAA website links to the Teaching eHRAF webpage which looks to provide “an innovative, interdisciplinary teaching resource for universities, colleges, and high schools aimed at providing faculty with ideas about how to use the eHRAF World Cultures and eHRAF Archaeology online databases in their curricula”. This website provides instructional material on how to use and implement the eHRAF material in the classroom as well as various exercises, assignments, and lesson plans.
The AAA also sponsors an Anthropology Education Committee (AEC). This committee has developed resources to aid instructors in implementing anthropological concepts and methods in K-12, community college, and adult learning settings. This body was formed to identify, develop, and promote high quality anthropology curriculums and effective teaching methods; to promote the relevance of anthropology as a tool for understanding and improving schools and schooling; to use all available methods of media to diffuse information about anthropology curricula and teaching methods; to accomplish this through the support of pre- and in-service programs in anthropology teacher training, encouraging the state or provincial certification of teachers in anthropology, and supporting anthropology as a high school elective with advanced placement status; to work with other educational organizations to accomplish these goals; to identify sources of sustainable funding for the support of education initiatives; and to increase the acceptance of anthropology as a social science major and recognition of anthropology as meeting social science requirements by State Boards of Education. While this body is currently inactive there are online anthropological resources available which provide links to teacher oriented anthropology and archaeology websites, definitions of common anthropology and archaeology terms, and lesson plans.
Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) “works with archaeologists, educators, museum staff, and other specialists to create and compile programs and resources that you can use in your classroom or at home to explain what archaeology is, what archaeologists do, and how sites are discovered, uncovered, and interpreted. Resources include lesson plans and activities that can be downloaded and adapted for your use”. The AIA site contains various lesson plans ranging in scope from an introduction to what archaeology is to various topics on the prehistoric past; links to AIA sponsored archaeology fairs which aim to educate the public on all things archaeology; bibliographies of archaeology related books and articles; a glossary of archaeology related terms; military troop lectures which seek to improve awareness among deploying military personnel regarding the culture and history of local communities in host countries and war zones; and news links to topics related to archaeology.
The Archaeology Channel is an online media outlet which centralizes various news, media, and outreach sources pertaining to archaeology. As part of this effort the site contains a teaching resource page. This page contains online lesson plans, activities, power points, and links to fieldwork opportunities for teachers, teacher workshops, programs for students, and archaeology based websites.
The Colorado Coal Field War Project has sponsored one week summer professional development seminars for K-12 teachers. These seminars use the history and archaeology of Colorado coal mining during the 19th and 20th centuries as a means of educating teachers on the history of the region as well as helping to fostering a greater understanding of issues relating to “social and cultural diversity, with understanding the meaning of democracy, and with reclaiming what has traditionally been excluded from historical analysis”.
Included in this initiative are a series of lesson plans aimed at instituting the ideas and concepts covered in the seminar in the classroom.
History Colorado offers a variety of resources for educators including a range of internet resources and in class activities.
Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center (MVAC), housed at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (UW-L), is dedicated to researching, preserving, and teaching about the archaeological resources of the Upper Mississippi River region. The MVAC provides a wealth of resources for educators. They provide free Education Newsletters which provides content information on specific topics with accompanying lesson plans and other related resources. Themes include Native American Use of the Mississippi, Rock Art, Historic Archaeology, Cultural Resource Management Projects, Plant and Animal Usage, and Architectural History.
The Center also has a wealth of online teacher resources which includes online Classroom Materials and Services, online instructional series documenting the Pre-European peoples of the area and the Process of Archaeology, a glossary of archaeological terms, and a series of lessons and activities that can be used in the classroom.
The National Park Service provides a webpage with links to various teacher resources. They discuss why it is a good idea to teach archaeology and provide online guides to assist teachers and interpreters along this path. These guides include Archaeology for Interpreters, Interpretation for Archaeologists, Archaeology for Kids, Educators: The Public Benefit of Archaeology, and Archaeology Law for the Public.
Project Archaeology is a Bureau of Land Management (BLM) program designed to provide high quality educational materials, professional development programs, and continuing professional support for educators interested in integrating archaeological concepts into the classroom. This is accomplished through the use of a series of curriculum guides available online; the delivery of educational materials through workshops, peer monitoring, and online courses to facilitate professional development; and the use of printed updates, newsletters, networking opportunities, awards, additional learning experiences, and other materials made available through Project Archaeology.
The Project Archaeology site contains videos, activities, and information for students; links to state affiliates for the program; a calendar of events; links to educational material; information on how these materials meet common core standards; and information on the Project Archaeology Leadership Academy and other professional development programs.
Project Archaeology’s educational materials include Investigating Shelter, “a supplementary science and social studies curriculum unit for grades 3 through 5… easily adaptable for middle and high school U.S. History classes. It consists of nine comprehensive lessons guiding students through the archaeological study of shelter including geography, historic photos, oral histories, a toolkit of scientific concepts, and a final performance of understanding. The lessons connect students to the human past through discovery. Students learn how archaeologists study the past and investigate a real archaeological site”; a series of publication on regional archaeology and other site or resource specific texts; and other teaching materials including lesson plans.
This program also provides outdoor educational opportunities for students and educators alike during the summer months. These programs provide opportunities for students and educators across the country to expand on the Project Archaeology lesson plans in a hands on field setting.
Professional development comes in the form of the Leadership Academy which provides training for educators on how to implement the Investigating Shelter curriculum. This is a field based learning experience conducted during the summer months. Lodging, meals, and a travel stipend are provided for those selected for the program. Other professional development opportunities come in the form of online virtual workshops which focus on the exploration of the basics of scientific inquiry (observation, inference, evidence, and classification) using actual archaeological data. This course increases one’s understanding of archaeology while also providing participants with a comprehensive set of lessons that they can use in their own classrooms. These online self-directed courses cost $175, with an additional $60 buying 2 graduate credits, and teach educators how to integrate archaeological concepts into the classroom.
The Smithsonian provides teaching resources for educators across a range of disciplines including Art and Design, Science and Technology, Language Arts, and History and Culture. Focusing on History and Culture they offer a number of lesson plans and professional development opportunities. Lesson plans include topics relevant to anthropology and archaeology. Professional development opportunities include workshops, off and online conferences and instructional programs designed to train educators in the implementation and use of educational items. The Smithsonian also conducts a Scholars in the Schools program which provides custom designed educational programming whereby a Smithsonian Institution scholar will visit individual schools and communities to provide informational programs.
The Smithsonian also publishes and distributes AnthroNotes, “a biannual, free, 20-page publication provides lead articles on current anthropological research, teaching activities and strategies, and reviews of teaching resources”.
The Smithsonian also designed and maintains an Anthropology on the Internet for K-12 program. This program provides general information on anthropology and archaeology and links to resources for archaeology, cultural anthropology, physical anthropology, linguistics, regional studies, museums, virtual exhibits, electronic publications, and anthropological/ archaeological associations.
The Society for American Archaeology provides a number of resources for educators on the SAA website. These include an Archaeology for Educators unit which “provides educators with background information on archaeology as well as hands-on and interactive activities to introduce the fascinating field of archaeology to students of all ages”.
Classroom and instructional resources include lesson plans developed by the SAA as well as links to lesson plans developed by other outlets, links to archaeological resources provided by other institutions, links to student oriented archaeology programs developed by educators, in and out of classroom teacher training opportunities, links to organizations which create artifact study kits, archaeological publications, and classroom dig kits.
The Society for Historical Archaeology maintains a number of resources for students and teachers on their website. These resources include a list of field schools, information related to exploring the topic of historical archaeology, a higher education guide which provides information on graduate programs throughout North America, and an interactive Unlocking the Past website-a public outreach initiative undertaken by the SHA.
Unlocking the Past is an online resource designed to help the public connect with archaeology in a meaningful way in order to help them understand not only what the discipline is and what it does but to help educate the public on a range of topics related to the historic past. This resource is a compendium to a book of the same name.
Texas Beyond History (TBH) is a virtual museum dedicated to the cultural heritage of Texas. The site is run by the University of Austin Texas. “Texas Beyond History (TBH) is a public education service of the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory at the University of Texas at Austin, and in partnership with the Department of Anthropology at Texas State University and 15 other organizations. Begun in 2001, its purpose is to interpret and share the results of archeological and historical research on the cultural heritage of Texas with the citizens of Texas and the world.”
The site contains informational exhibits on various topics related to the historic and prehistoric past of Texas. There are also resources for children and educators as well as a glossary and answers to frequently asked questions about archaeology.
The kids resources include instructional games, fun facts about the archaeology and the past of the area, a glossary, a research tool to help students investigate the past, and a series of activities and games which educate students on what an archaeologist is, what archaeologists do, different scientific principles associated with archaeological investigation, and with other archaeological topics.
Educator resources include individual lesson plans and teaching units for grades K-12 available for download. These resources meet the Texas teaching standards. Lesson plans cover a range of archaeological issues, different aspects of the archaeological past, and many are tailored to be integrated into other subject curricula including math, art, science, social studies, and language arts.
The site also contains links to other online archaeology related education resources.
The US Forest Service developed and maintains the Passport in Time (PIT) program. PIT “is a volunteer archaeology and historic preservation program of the US Forest Service (FS). PIT volunteers work with professional FS archaeologists and historians on national forests throughout the U.S. on such diverse activities as archaeological survey and excavation, rock art restoration, archival research, historic structure restoration, oral history gathering, and analysis and curation of artifacts.”
Passport in Time provides individuals or all ages with little or no archaeological experience the chance to participate in archaeological investigations. “PIT volunteers receive a "Passport" and a PIT Passport number. Each time a volunteer visits a project, the project leader stamps the volunteer's passport and documents.” Passports track where individuals have worked throughout the US and the various levels of training they have received along the way. This program helps to develop a much needed volunteer labor force which are integral in the investigation an any number of sites while simultaneously working to actively involve members of the interested public in the archaeological process.