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Archaeology in Oklahoma


Artifact Activity

Archaeologists study artifacts and objects made or used by people. Artifacts are all around you. They are objects that are used in everyday life. For example, the toothbrush that you used this morning is an artifact. The trash that you throw away is also an artifact. The school that you are in right now is also an artifact, called a feature. The trees outside are not considered artifacts unless you changed them in some way, like made a canoe for example. Have the students participate in the following exercise and share with the class. If there is time, have the students trade pictures and comment about what is in their partner's picture.

Draw a picture of objects you may have on your bedside table, dresser, or your desk. Look at the picture and write down the artifacts that you see.

Writing Extension Activity
Using five to ten complete sentences, what would an archaeologist learn 500 years from now about you by studying these artifacts?

Plate Sherd Activity

Provide each student with a paper plate or a piece of paper. Have them color or decorate it any way they please. Once they are finished, they will cut the plate/paper into several sections. Have the student try and put the plate back together. This is what an archaeologist does after they find pot sherds. Now, have the students give their plate to the person beside them and remove two pieces of the plate. Have the student try and put their new plate together.

Answer these questions

  • How was it putting your own plate back together?
  • What happens when you get someone else's plate?
  • How did you feel when pieces were removed?
  • How does this relate to what archaeologists do in the field?

Writing Extension Activity
In three to five complete sentences, write what you think an archaeologist would say in one hundred years about your plate. How it is important in your culture today?

Researching Influential Oklahoma Sites Activity

There are several important sites in Oklahoma which have influenced the history of the state. Pick one of the important sites here or another site in Oklahoma which made an impact on history. Break the class up into groups of two or three and have them choose a site to research. Be sure to share with the class your group's findings. This is a helpful document: Oklahoma Archeological Survey Highlighted by County (PDF)

Be sure to include the following information in complete sentences:

  • What site is it?
  • Where is the site?
  • What is the site known for?
  • An interesting fact.
  • Why you chose that site.

Stratigraphy Activity and Worksheet

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Archaeology Coloring Page

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Archaeology Word Search

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