Head to the kitchen for your first excavation. Team
up with a group of friends to exchange bags for analysis. Garbage can
be really gross, but most household garbage is not dangerous. During the
analysis, you may wish to wear gloves, an apron, and a face mask. Check
with an adult to make sure this project is ok.
Every day, for seven days, record EVERYTHING that goes into the bag
on your record sheet. Recycle and compost as
your family normally does, but record this information separately.
After seven days, number each bag to make each family's
garbage anonymous and exchange them. Dump each bag in the yard or on a big
table protected with plastic. Archeologists would call this sloppy mess
an "assemblage." Decide how to sort the artifacts, but have reasons for
your choices. For example, you might sort by material, shape, or smell.
Describe the contents of the bag. What activities does
the assemblage reflect? How did recycling and composting affect your interpretation?
If you collected for two weeks, or a month, what might you expect to see?