Distance Learning

"Excavation and Tools" Midwest Archeological Center Distance Learning Program

Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
Literacy and Language Arts,Social Studies
Common Core Standards:
3.L.1, 3.L.3, 4.L.1, 4.L.3, 5.L.1, 5.L.3, 3.RI.7, 4.RI.7, 3.SL.1, 4.SL.1, 5.SL.1

Activity: Excavation and Tools
Grade Level: 3rd – 5th
Time Requirement: 30-60 minutes

Essential Questions
What do archeologists do after they have located a site?
What methods and tools do they use to investigate the past?

Lesson Overview
Excavations are designed to answer greater questions about the past. Students will review a working excavation and see some of the methods and tools that archeologists employ at active dig sites. Discussions are built around the ethics of stewardship and can expand to topics on the environment, sustainability, and responsibility.

Learning Objectives

  • Students will develop knowledge of the archeological tool kit.
  • Students will analyze the ethics of invasive excavation.
  • Students will assess tool choices and participate in decision-making in archeology.
  • Students will discuss the development of primary data in archeology and how it is used for research.

Contact us:
Phone: (402) 437-5392, Ext. 145
Email: mwac_distancelearning@nps.gov
More information on MWAC distance learning


The “tool match-up” worksheet comes from the MWAC Junior Ranger Handbook. It is to be used in conjunction with discussion in this lesson.


Last updated: May 19, 2021