Field Trips

Simulated Archeology Dig

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Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
State Standards:
See attached Teacher's Guide for a list of educational standards.


Grades 3–5, 60-90 minutes

Students engage in archeological field techniques while learning to measure, map, and identify artifacts of the ancestral Puebloan culture.

Group size is limited to 25 students.

In this lesson students will:

  • develop an understanding of the science of archeology by learning the skills and concepts involved
  • be introduced to a broad overview of the archeological time periods represented at the park
  • explore an aspect of archeology through participation in a field exploration
  • become aware of the importance of preservation of cultural resources
  • understand the role of the National Park Service in preservation and protection of cultural and natural resources.

Learning Objectives

By the end of this module students will be able to:

  • describe archeology as the study and interpretation of past human cultures
  • list archeological time periods represented at the park
  • use the scientific methods adopted by archeologists
  • recognize that archeological resources are nonrenewable
  • document threats to archeological resources and suggest ways to protect them
  • describe at least one thing they learned about Petrified Forest National Park and/or the National Park Service.

Programs are available between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday.

To request this program, please contact the education program coordinator at least three weeks before your visit. 

Phone: (928) 524-6228 ext.276

Educational Fee Waivers
School groups, including home schools, may apply for an educational fee waiver several weeks before a visit. Without an approved application, school groups will be considered a noncommercial group and charged entrance fees accordingly.

Travel Grants 
Each year Petrified Forest National Park offers funding to help schools cover transportation costs to the park for educational field trips. Travel grants are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. School groups unable to visit the park without financial assistance are encouraged to apply, however, any school group is eligible to apply and can send in an application at any time.



This teacher's guide contains background knowledge for your students, pre-visit lessons, education standards associated with the field trip, and student assessment questions.

Download Simulated Archeology Dig Teacher's Guide

Download Educational Fee Waiver Application

Download Travel Grant Application

Last updated: October 22, 2018