It was a great day at TMSE. The kids were focused throughout the period and seemed to have fun doing their activity. Also, they appear to have an increasingly better knowledge of the study of anthropology and are continually excited to do new things each week.
This week the lesson was centered on museums. First, we did a bit of review and the class was asked about the four fields of anthropology. They really seem to be learning these as they all gave good answers of what anthropology is. We then discussed different types of museums and I was impressed with the museums they had been to. We talked about museums around the area, many of which had been visited by the kids, and we learned about some museums in Brazil too. Then, we asked what a museum does and came to the conclusion that a museum is a place where objects of cultural, scientific, or historical importance – often old things – are stored and displayed. There are museums about anthropology, and we learned what kinds of things can be in anthropology museums. There can be bones of human ancestors, Egyptian mummies, cultural masks, and many other things in anthropological museums. One of the main items in these museums is artifacts, and that was what today’s activity was about.
After the lesson, each student got to make their own artifact that could be displayed in a museum about their clan. Specifically, everyone made their own mask. The mask could be anything they wanted it to be with one stipulation – there had to be one part of the mask that made it distinctly from their clan. Two of the groups used the same color on all of their masks while each mask from the third clan had ears sticking off of their mask. They made their masks out of construction paper, colored them with markers, and added feathers and other decorations. Overall, it was a fun (but messy) activity that everyone really seemed to enjoy.