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Public Education Committee--

Philadelphia 2000 - A Preview

Teresa L. Hoffman

The activism of PEC members on behalf of SAA will be particularly evident at the Annual Meeting in Philadelphia. The following is a preview of some of the activities you may want to include in your schedule. The preliminary program contains registration information and additional details that were not available when this update was prepared.

New Exhibit is Ready to Travel - The PEC has completed a new traveling exhibit that describes and illustrates the value of public archaeology in the classroom and the community. The portable and easy-to-assemble unit replaces the larger Education Resource Forum, which the committee has displayed at archaeological and educational conferences since 1991. The Forum featured examples of precollegiate educational materialsfrom books and teaching manuals to games and magazinesthat visitors could review. However, as the resource collection expanded, the exhibit became cumbersome and costly to travel.

The new exhibitwhich debuted in October 1999 at an archaeology fair in Alexandria, Virginia, and was displayed at the American Anthropological Association annual meeting in November 1999focuses on the objectives of public archaeology and the mission of the SAA PEC. With built-in space for displaying a small sample of archaeology education materials and distributing related brochures, the exhibit is suitable for use at local, regional, and national conferences. There is no rental fee, but exhibitors must bear some costs for shipping. For additional information, contact KC Smith, Museum of Florida History, 500 S. Bronough St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-0250, tel: (850) 487-1902, fax: (850) 921-2540, email:

New Monograph on Sale in Philadelphia - The first publication in the Teaching with Archaeology series, the PEC's theme-based educational publications designed for educators and archaeologists, will be on sale in the exhibit hall at the SAA booth. History Beneath the Sea: Nautical Archaeology in the Classroom includes six articles, a list of resources, and classroom activities designed to prepare educators for introducing underwater archaeology to students. While the classroom activities are geared for precollegiate audiences, background readings in the 28-page booklet provide an excellent summary for undergraduate survey courses or for those who want to know more about this aspect of the discipline.

In addition to an overview of nautical archaeology, four case studies describing recent or ongoing shipwreck investigations by professional archaeologists help to explain the nature and goals of underwater research. Sites described include the Emanuel Point Wreck, lost during the Spanish effort to colonize Pensacola, Florida, in 1559; Queen Anne's Revenge, flagship of pirate Edward Teach (aka Blackbeard), lost off North Carolina in 1718; H. L. Hunley, a Civil War ironclad sunk near Charleston in 1864; and HMS Titanic, discussed with an eye toward the ethics of modern salvage operations. An article about the conservation of waterlogged artifacts offers further information about the processes that underwater archaeologists undergo as part of the research process.

The next publication in the Teaching with Archaeology series, available in 2000, will address African-American archaeology, and future issues will focus on rock art and Paleoindians. Publications in the series will sell for $6.95 for SAA members and $8.95 for nonmembers, with a $5 shipping and handling fee if they are ordered after the Annual Meeting from the SAA office in Washington, D.C. For additional information about the series, contact Amy Douglass at 480-350-5105 or KC Smith (see above).

Send Us Your Posters! - The Archaeology Week and Network subcommittees of PEC and the Council for Affiliated Societies invite you to participate in "Celebrate Archaeology 1999­2000." If you know of a terrific archaeology poster published to commemorate an Archaeology Day, Week, or Month between April 1999 through March 2000, please send it in. The deadline is March 3, 2000. All posters will be displayed at the meeting, and SAA members will have the opportunity to vote for their favorites. Awards will go to the top three posters. See the 1999 winners on the Web at "" Send two (2) unmounted and unfolded posters to Dan Haas, State Archaeologist, Bureau of Land Management, 2850 Youngfield St., Denver, CO 80215, tel: (303) 239-3647, email: In addition to the poster contest, the Archaeology Week subcommittee also will hold a forum for state archaeology week coordinators to share ideas and strategies.

Developing An Archaeology Teaching Trunk - This workshop will take place on Friday, April 7, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. The teaching toolkit of the archaeologist must become more diverse as audiences become more diverse. Audiences representing a variety of language skills, ethnic and social backgrounds, abilities and disabilities can benefit from a toolkit that includes the use of a well-conceived teaching trunk or resource box. This workshop will address both positive and negative aspects associated with the development of the trunk for a variety of contexts including the classroom, museum, and field. Participants will have the opportunity to examine various trunks and query their creators. Organizers include Renata B. Wolynec (EdinboroUniversity of Pennsylvania), Bonnie Christensen (Mississippi Valley Archaeology Center), and Margaret Heath (BLM Heritage Education Program).

Public Archaeology: International Perspectives, Debate, and Critique - Featuring participants from the United States, Europe, and the Middle East, this symposium explores regional and national styles of doing "public archaeology," aiming towards scholarly debate about the various goals pursued by people calling themselves public archaeologists, archaeological heritage managers, cultural resource managers, archaeological/museum educators, and others. The session organizers are Carol McDavid and John Carman (University of Cambridge), Linda Derry (Alabama Historical Commission, Old Cahawba Archaeological Park), and Patrice L. Jeppson (Center for Archaeology/Baltimore County Public Schools, University of Pennsylvania).

Field Schools for the Next Millenium: Mixing Student Training, Research, and Public Education - Organized by Beverly Mitchum-Chiarulli and Phil Neusius, this symposium examines field school programs based in undergraduate and graduate anthropology programs, agencies, museums, and independent research programs. It will explore examples of field schools that not only train students in field techniques, but also look at the roles these programs play in developing student views and approaches to archaeological fieldwork.

Interest Group in Public Archaeology - The organizing meeting for this new interest group within SAA will be held in Philadelphia and is coordinated by Ruth Selig and Beth Nodlund. The interest group differs from the PEC in that it will not be project-based or work intensive. Its main purpose is networking at the Annual Meeting and it serves as an introduction for those who may be interested in joining the PEC.

In addition to these PEC-sponsored programs, at least two other education-related sessions will be held in Philadelphia. The BLM­Heritage Education Program is sponsoring a Project Archaeology and Heritage Education Program Retreat on Tuesday, April 4, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Project Archaeology is an education program designed for teachers and their students that currently operates in 14 states and is under development in several more. This day-long retreat explores ways to evaluate state and national programs, and includes discussion of educational standards and student assessments. Project Archaeology state coordinators and workshop facilitators, BLM Heritage Education Coordinators, and others interested in the program are encouraged to attend.

The symposium, "Maneuvering the Public: A Simple Site Visit Goes A Long Way," focuses on the results of an intensive and well-planned public relations program at the Hickory Bluff site in Delaware. Organized by Diane Halsall (Parsons ES) and Kevin Cunningham (Delaware Department of Transportation), this session demonstrates how public involvement in fieldwork, analysis, and report writing, adds an important dimension to archaeological research.

Theresa Hoffman, associate editor for Public Education Committee column, is with Archaeological Consulting Services in Tempe, Arizona.

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