Friday Casual: Today’s Brushes with Archaeology

Another year, another Day of Archaeology. Kudos and thank yous to the core staff facilitating this blog!

That said, this year provides more ways to connect with my first academic love, archaeology. Today, I’ve spent time culling through links in my social media feed for the latest archaeology reports and news, a practice I do daily. In fact, just yesterday, that practice yielded an article find completely pertinent and timely to my online course’s discussion of past subsistence practices and diets. The students like it when I bring archaeology into the cultural anthropology discussion, because it lets them appreciate how the subfields unite to generate a richer picture and record.

After keeping current on research online, I listened in on a 1.5-hour webinar presentation from an astronomer on Maya calendar studies. It gave me some ideas about a project approach I could use in the design process for a new class activity, and was great insight into interdisciplinary research occurring on the other side of the United States from me.

Tonight, I look forward to reading through the stack of anthropology/archaeology professional organization journals I put to the side during the spring semester and the ones which arrived while I was at a teaching workshop last week. I might also take a look at my schedule and see if I can get to an archaeology museum this summer to visit an exhibit I would really like to see.

While I am teaching one cultural anthropology class online this summer, I use my summers for prepping projects for the upcoming year too. My week included networking with professors at other colleges in my region, including discussing how we can join our students together to learn more about archaeology, and discussing a service learning project with a non-profit director. Moreover, my work included starting to tinker with a conference paper to hopefully have it ready to submit for publication submission soon. I’ve added more sources to my to-read-this-summer book list in hopes of starting plans to design an archaeology course in the next year and activities for a student club which will hopefully be up and running in the next semester. Lastly, my experiences in the midwest last week for a workshop have brought me back to our group website, looking for teaching and anthropology materials I could incorporate into my courses come fall. Although I would like for more hours in each day to be archaeology-focused, I still come back to it often enough for contentment and to enhance my students’ learning experiences.

Even though I wasn’t in a field, lab, or in a classroom today, archaeology hasn’t been far from mind or from the independent workload I’ve designed for myself for this summer. It’s always a pleasure to share a bit of the diversity of work opportunities with those interested in archaeology.