Welcome to UA-TMSE Anthropology Spring 2014!

Welcome to the blog of the Spring 2014 partnership between the University of Alabama’s Department of Anthropology and the Tuscaloosa Magnet Schools – Elementary (TMSE)! Over the next 12 weeks, this blog will follow our exploits as we teach an Introduction to Anthropology class to a group of 3rd and 4th graders from TMSE.

The goals of the TMSE-UA partnership are manifold, but our primary goal is to introduce elementary students to the exciting world of Anthropology through discussion, directed learning, and goal-oriented instruction. The students will learn about the four fields of Anthropology through classroom activities that will focus on Archaeology, Cultural Anthropology, Linguistic Anthropology, and Physical Anthropology.  An important part of this experience will also offer an opportunity for us (as educators) to gain experience sharing our world with elementary age children. The Spring 2014 TMSE partnership uses many of the activities that have been tested in previous iterations of the class, but we also hope to develop a few new activities and contribute to a growing body of outreach activities.

While the partnership has been a success for many years, this semester will bring a few new faces into the program. The TMSE partnership will be under the direction of Dr. A. Brooke Persons, an anthropological archaeologist and recent Ph.D. graduate from the Department of Anthropology. The TMSE will also benefit from the assistance of a select few upper-level Anthropology undergraduate students, including Sophia Fazal, Rachel Miller, and Sally Skelton. Throughout the semester, we will also be coordinating with Dr. Christopher Lynn, a Department of Anthropology professor, founder of the partnership, and developer of many of the classroom activities. Each of us will be blogging throughout the semester to share our experience of teaching anthropology inside of an elementary classroom.

By creating a digital presence for the Department of Anthropology-TMSE partnership, we hope to contribute to a broader dialogue about anthropology outreach and to confirm the place of anthropology in modern education. We will be posting a weekly update of our activities, including the lesson plans and classroom aids.

We look forward to receiving your comments and questions!

2 thoughts on “Welcome to UA-TMSE Anthropology Spring 2014!

  1. Hi! Thank you for creating this curriculum! I teach 3rd and 4th grade in Hawaii at Innovations PCS and I’m thinking of doing an anthropology unit this year. As I began my research and curriculum planning I stumbled upon your website. Is there any way I could get the other lesson plans that you have created for your 12 week curriculum? I have already downloaded weeks 1,3 and 8. Also, were did you get your artifacts for the primary sources used in your lessons? Thank you again. I look forward to hearing back from you.
    Aloha, Ashley

    1. Hi Ashley, Apologies for the long delay in replying! I supervise this program but had not looked in on the blog in a few months. We are working to post all lessons plans as they are developed to the blog site but have gotten behind. If you are still looking, I’d be happy to share anything else we may not have posted as I come across it. The artifacts belong to the University of Alabama Anthropology Department & were collected or purchased as part of research or for teaching university students. Depending on what you’re interested in, I would be happy to point you in the right direction if I can.

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