Students in 4th and 5h grade dug deeply into their own ancestry within their archaeology unit.
Students used the Torah to learn about their family history through card games, Teva Tuesday and puzzle activities. These hands on projects were an exciting way for the students to be their own archaeologists.
The students examined three essential questions for the assignment. The assignment focused around how they can learn about the past, remember people from the past, and connect back to their Jewish ancestry.
To help learn about the first question students used clue cards to match prominent figures from the Torah with each provided clue. The students made a connection between their ancestors and the Torah.
The investigation continued with a puzzle activity. The students had to guess what the puzzle was with only a few of the pieces. This activity allowed students to become archaeologists by trying to piece together a larger puzzle with only a couple pieces. Students had to make assumptions about what the puzzle was and be creative through research. They gained clues this way to help them come up with what the bigger picture could be.
This assignment continued outdoors where students created monotubes or cardboard tubes used to see out of. “Monotube” is the name that the students creatively came up with for the device. After looking into the “monotube” the students described what they saw. The activity gave the students tunnel vision. They were restricted to only seeing a part of one thing and need to clearly communication with their group members.
Lastly, using the parent and teacher contributions, students looked at “artifacts.” These artifacts were a sample of family photos and memorabilia collected from the parents for students in the class. The students learned a deeper understanding of how to collect information about genealogy. They figured out which student in the class the artifacts connected back to, similar to what an archaeologist would do with the facts they collect. They also sorted and categorized the items to “discover” information such as what the people did for leisure, what kind of food they ate and how they received their education…
The 4th and 5th graders came together and answered the essential questions they were given. They were intrigued by this assignment- learning how to uncover their past like an archaeologist would.