Simulated archaeological excavation

The workshop of archaeological excavation is aimed to provide students, especially those from primary and secondary schools, a better understanding of the historical-archaeological research’s world through the implementation of the main stages that characterize the profession of archaeologist and researcher.

It is a specified practical activity that comprehensively meets the purpose of developing the students’ aptitudes and relational skills, their “investigative” spirit and their visual and tactile perception, as well as their manual skills through the correct methodological support that subordinates the activity, meanly recreational, to precise rules in line with the current excavation techniques. The central idea of the activity is the precise awareness that the archaeological excavation is a research, an investigation, mostly destructive (for example during the removal of soil), aimed to discover and understand something that doesn’t belong anymore to our everyday reality. For this very reason, as it happens in a current “police” investigation, the documentation in each stages assumes a central importance, since a find, if suitably treated, can transform itself from silent witness into revealing element of a fundamental part of the collective memory.

The workshop entails two phases:

the first theoretical part takes place in classroom where the archaeologist will show the archaeological site of La Cuma, the archaeological excavation, the excavation techniques, the data recovery and treatment, and she will also give a brief historical overview of the study and interpretation methods of the data from the excavation itself, as well as explaining the bibliographical research of the sources.

The second phase is practical and will takes place in the site. It is a simulation of a real excavation: the students will be immersed in a space that reproduces an archaeological site, inside of which they will carry out the techniques of stratigraphic excavation, graphic and photographic documentation of the finds, and of first treatment of the finds themselves (washing, cataloguing, first interpretation, and restoration).

Before starting the activity, the students will be accompanied in a guided tour to explore the archaeological site.

Preferably intended for primary and secondary school students.

Duration: 4 hours (visit of the archaeological site, workshop, break).