Experimental Archaeology: Learning about Craft and Technology in the Past

The Experimental Archaeology: Learning about Craft and Technology in the Past project ran from October 2017 to 2019. It had three strands:

  • A series of 13 monthly workshops and school visits where craftspeople demonstrated and explained different technologies in the past. Where possible, there were opportunities for hands-on experience by participants. The workshops were filmed and blogs were contributed reflecting on the day and including links to other resources.

Click here for links to the workshop videos and blogs.

  • Workshop leaders were asked to donate one object from their workshop to be assembled into a loans box. In fact, they were so generous, that in the end four boxes were created.
  • Past experience has shown that teachers sometimes find loans boxes difficult to incorporate into their lessons. We also wanted the boxes to be used by all ages, children to adults, and not just in schools. A teacher (Dave Peers) worked with two archaeologists (Lachlan and Lynne McKeggie) to produce information sheets and lesson plans in a fruitful collaboration. The lessons are written at multiple levels to allow a wide use, and include specific resources to go along with the information sheets. The lessons, lesson resources and information sheets can be downloaded from the website, and top copies of lessons and information sheets are also included in the boxes. The information sheets may be useful to other groups, eg museum volunteers, and the learning materials transferable to other loans boxes or collections.

Click here for information and links to the learning resources.

The boxes are freely available to borrow - by schools, youth groups, libraries, community groups, adult education groups, care homes etc. They do require someone to take responsibility for supervising their use, ensuring care is taken when handling and that all objects and sheets are returned. Contact info@archhighland.org.uk if you are interested.

We welcome feedback on the boxes and the learning materials, or links to other good resources, via the Experimental Archaeology blog.  In addition, the Resources Page has a form which allows you to contribute additional lessons and activities to use with the boxes.

Acknowledgments and copyright

The Experimental Archaeology Project: Learning about Craft and Technology of the Past was generously funded by Historic Environment Scotland and the Heritage Lottery Fund (now National Lottery Heritage Fund). Project coordinator was by Susan Kruse of ARCH. Alasdair Cameron filmed workshops and helped extensively with logistics at events. Charlotte Douglas of AOC Archaeology created the loans boxes. James McComas edited the videos and posted them on YouTube. Iain Sarjeant designed the information sheets and photographed the objects. Thanks also to all the workshop leaders who provided the objects for the boxes, and additional donations by North Kessock & District Local History Society, Pam Draper and Anne MacInnes.

All information sheets are ©Lachlan and Lynne McKeggie, and teaching resources © ARCH. Materials can be copied for teaching situations, but may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means electronic or mechanical for publication unless written permission is obtained.



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Archaeology for Communities in the Highlands (ARCH), The Goods Shed, The Old Station, Strathpeffer, Ross-Shire, Scotland IV14 9DH
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