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Arkansas Archeology Week 2000

Theme: A Necessity of Life: Clothing

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Downloadable Documents
The following .pdf documents provide background information on this year's Archeology Week theme, as well as references for further information. You may download these documents for your own use and make copies to distribute in your classes or programs.

Download the free Acrobat ReaderYou will need the free Adobe Acrobat reader to view and print the following items. Abobe Acrobat can be downloaded here.

PDF A Necessity of Life: Clothing - Background information on this year's theme.

PDF References on Native American Clothing

Lesson Plan: Sock Moccasins

Lesson Plan: Fabric Impressions

Archeology Week 2000 Bookmark

Ideas for Programs or Classrooms

Draw a Shirt
Bring in pictures from books and magazines showing different Native American dress, or native costumes from throughout the world. Using butcher paper or art paper, cut out two pieces for each student to be the front and back of a shirt or dress. Poke holes around the edges and sew with yarn. Let students decorate their clothing in a traditional style and then wear them.

Write a Story
Bring in a variety of buttons of different styles and sizes. Let each child choose 1-3 buttons, then write a story about the person who would have worn them on their clothing.

Make an Exhibit
Make a display of various clothing-working tools, both prehistoric and historic. Prehistoric tools could include knives, awls, scrapers, spindle whorls, and needles. Historic tools could include tatting shuttles, needles, pins, knitting needles, crochet hooks, spools of thread, thimbles, darning eggs, lace-making tools, and weaving tools.

Offer a Craft Class
Teach a class on a clothing-making skill. Indian crafts can include fingerweaving, moccasin-making, or beading and quillwork. Older children can easily learn fingerweaving using dowels and yarn; see the References for a book on this craft. Historic crafts can include knitting, crocheting, or tatting. Contact your county Home Extension Office to find an instructor.

Research Traditional Clothing
Have students research clothing styles of Native Americans from different parts of the country (or different cultures worldwide). Use books, magazines, and the Internet to find pictures and information. Write a report on how climate, gender, age, and culture may be reflected in clothing styles.

Think like an Archeologist
Discuss what an archeologist would learn from the clothes you are wearing. Which clothing items might survive thousands of years; which would not? Can you tell from what remains which are girls' or boys' clothes? What can you say about climate, technology, or status differences reflected in the remains.

Collect Fasteners
Young children can bring in samples of clothing fasteners to compare, such as buttons, shoelaces, ties, belts, zippers, velcro, snaps, hooks-and-eyes.

You can also review activity ideas from past Archeology Weeks:


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Copyright 1995, Arkansas Archeological Survey, Revised - April 24, 2006