Kids Dig Reed
Kids Dig Reed is a highly interactive site that will introduce students from grades 4 through 8 to the daily life of West Virginia’s Reed Farmstead’s 19th-century inhabitants. A complete history of the Reed Farmstead and its inhabitants provides the background about ownership from the purchase in 1803 to the sale at auction in 1882. Students will learn through games, deductive reasoning and exploration, not just about how people made a living on a mountain farm, but also about the process and daily work of archaeologists.The Discovery Zone is billed as a tour of the farm, but as the farm is in ruins, the tour is essentially a reenactment of the steps taken by the archaeologists to reconstruct the lives and events of the farmstead’s inhabitants. Surveying, shovel test probes, metal detection, screening of soil for artifacts… each step taken by the archaeologists is demonstrated with audio and visual enhancements; the student selects the process and then views results. In addition to the map of the finds, there is also a graphic linked from the site, an artist’s reconstruction of the farmstead. If you don’t care to “uncover” items one by one, simply select the Artifact Gallery link to see personal, farm, household, and Civil War items. For each item there is an image plus a description of the material, origin and use for the item.
There is the usual assortment of mazes and word scrambles in the Games and Puzzles area, but in addition to these there are some unique and valuable educational activities. Then and Now allows students to match the 19th century household object with its contemporary equivalent. The Stratigraphy activity shows a cross-section of the areas below the soil surface and challenges the students to determine the order of the layers from oldest to most recent.