Fifth graders headed to the Upper School’s PARK this month for an Outdoor Archaeology Lab as part of their "Science in Action" studies. They’ve been learning about skills that scientists use - observing and inferring, comparing and classifying, and data collection - and had a chance to put them into action at the PARK.
First students visited with guest scientist Nicki Hise, who explained what she does as an archaeologist. Then the students got their hands dirty in a simulated archaeological dig that was set-up by Greg Mele, Director of Outdoor Education, with the help of his Upper School students, the PARKStewards. Greg said, “The PARKStewards and I were able to clear the site of summer growth and prep the Outdoor Archaeology Lab in a couple days. The PARKStewards did a great job getting everything set up for the fifth grade.”
Once the students found their artifacts, they worked as teams to analyze the artifacts, making inferences about what the individual artifacts signified. Fifth grade teacher Heather Robinson noted, “They also learned how perseverance is an invaluable skill to have when studying archaeology.”
Reflecting on the impact of hosting a live dig for her students, Heather added, “The PARK allowed us to have a more authentic experience. Having the tools and space to set-up an actual dig allowed for more direct experience of understanding why certain artifacts mean different things if they are found at different levels, which tests their inferring skills, as well.”
More PARK stories to come as we continue our experiential learning across grades and campuses!
Located in Austin, Texas, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School is a private co-ed elementary, middle and high school for grades K-12. Students benefit from dedicated faculty, a challenging academic program, fine and performing arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.