Digging up history

23rd January 1998 at 00:00
ARCHAEOLOGY IN THE ENGLISH NATIONAL CURRICULUM. Edited by Don Henson. Council for British Archaeology #163;3.95

TEACHING ARCHAEOLOGY: A UNITED KINGDOM DIRECTORY OF RESOURCES. Edited by Don Henson. Council for British Archaelogy #163;9.95

All history teachers know that pupils respond positively to archaeology, both in the classroom and in the field. Whether they are studying artefacts from a Roman villa or measuring a local Second World War pill-box, archaeology brings history alive. These two books produced by the Council for British Archaeology are a must for any history co-ordinator or head of department who wants to include more archaeology in their schemes of work.

Archaeology in the English National Curriculum sets out to help teachers use archaeology in planning study units. The book shows how archaeologists work and suggests ways in which teachers can use archaeological evidence and skills inside and outside the classroom.

There are fascinating case-studies - excellent guidance before, during and after visiting a site. What comes across strongly is the cross-curricular nature of archaeology and how it can help deliver many curriculum subjects, not just history. The book also contains a useful glossary and reading list.

Teaching Archaeology: A United Kingdom Directory of Resources is a gem. It tells you everything about archaeology at all levels of education, but most importantly it provides a wealth of regional contact addresses, interesting sites and resources. The resources section is particularly useful, with a section on replica manufacturers, comprehensive book-lists and a superb section on computer software. The list of videos is a treasure trove and it is amazing to see exactly what is available. Future editions will need to include a section on the Internet - a number of excellent archaeology websites are already available.

Peter Hicks teaches history and archaeology at a south London comprehensive

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