Hand axe

Students and Teaching and Archives, Oh My…

Unusually mixed day here – started by doing an archaeology handling session with a school group – not something I usually do. With any mixed group, there are always some who want to be there, and some who don’t care, and some who really are not fussed. Two of the boys in the group were really keen – all the questions and quite a few good answers! Real highlight though was seeing the look on ALL the faces, when I pulled out a Bronze Age sword….(which they didn’t handle, as I assumed the teacher wanted to take all of them home again).

You can tell if a young student will get the archaeology bug, when you hand them a palaeolithic hand axe, and tell them it was made 200,000 years ago. Watch that sink in, and see the reaction 🙂

Got a placement student from UCL with me at the moment, and she’s doing very well – happy to lift heavy boxes, and good with kids…useful combo!

Day ended showing the placement student our painfully slow database, and stores environmental monitoring systems. Then, of course, the network came crashing down around our ears….perfect way to end a week…time to go home…

A New Day

Morning in York. A new day. A day doing archaeology. Not that many would recognise it as archaeology. I’ll be going through a pile of references on engaging young people in archaeology to help complete a report for the CBA. Do most archaeologists spend most of their time digging? No! We spend most of our time reading.

Just read on the BBC News website that some pot sherds from Xianrendong in China have been dated to 20,000 BP. The oldest pottery yet discovered. That puts British Neolithic pots into perspective.

Also just received a nice photo of an Acheulian hand-axe from Prof. Bae in Korea to help illustrate an article I’ve written for the Young Archaeologist magazine. The hand-axes at the Jeongok-ri site are made of quartzite. It’s very hard and tough to knap – I tried when I was out there last month. I have my poor attempt at a my very own hand-axe on my desk as a paperweight.