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Dig For History At Home With Talk Of Iowa Summer Camp

Courtesty of Elizabeth Reetz.
During this episode of "Talk of Iowa," Elizabeth Reetz talks with Charity Nebbe about how to think like an archaeologist.

Archaeologists don’t have to travel the world to dig up history. In fact there might be an archaeological dig waiting for you in your trash can. During this episode of Talk of Iowa, learn how to explore history and heritage at home with Elizabeth Reetz of the Iowa Office of the State Archaeologist.

Summer may be a little different this year, but it's still a wonderful time for learning and adventure. Welcome to Talk of Iowa Summer Camp! Every Tuesday, join us for Talk of Iowa episodes that will be fun and educational for learners of all ages.

In this episode, we learn about and explore what archaeologists do. We often think of archaeologists as people who do a lot of digging trying to find bones, pottery and old tools, so that we can learn about our past. Archaeology is so much more than digging! Archaeologists study the world around them, and they also take really good notes called field notes about what they find.

Now you try! Downloador print your very own field notebookto use at home. 

Learn about taking good field notes


In this activity, the Florida Public Archaeology Network teaches you the basics of how archeologists learn about the past by going through your trash can. 

Do an archaeology scavenger hunt at home

Archaeology is about reading human stories through the objects and landscapes of the past. It’s not just about artifacts and digging. Human stories are intertwined with nature and places, and we can look for evidence of these stories almost anywhere. With this scavenger hunt BINGO, you will search for clues about places and objects that were created, used, or changed by people. Take photos or create drawings of your finds and activities to add to your archaeology field notes and record your observations about those clues.

Explore archaeology sites and museums in Iowa

There are lots of places to learn about archaeology right here in Iowa! This map directs you to all the best spots around the state.

Here are links to the three walking tour guides that are discussed during this episode of the Talk of Iowa: 

Lindsey Moon is IPR's Senior Digital Producer
Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa
Matthew was a producer for IPR's River to River and Talk of Iowa