Conceptualisation of exercises
Opening Exercise – Fossil or Artefact
This exercise can be implemented to introduce children (or anybody) into the first step to cataloguing archaeological artefacts. By identifying fossils or artefacts, the learner can be able to understand that archaeologists focus on the value of the material things, meanwhile palaeontologist focus on the finding of fossil remains.
The activity can start by placing the object (bone or axe) and placing them in the correct character. The dinosaur will react and show that it is a fossil from a living thing. The character representing a caveman or a random human, can show that it was an artefact used for something.
The GUI can present the same procedure but instead of dragging the physical item, it will be a classic drag-and-drop game where you can get a straight response from the game.
I will argue that positioning the bone on the leg of the dinosaur will help relating the object from the ground on to its origin. The same thing will happen to the axe, by placing it in its context, the user will be able to appreciate its use and understand its value.
Value of Artefacts – The Burial
This exercise can be used to help the user understand that there are different values to material culture. These values have been changing through time and they are different for each culture. Different cultures value different things.
This is basically a puzzle game where any given corpse, in this case the mummy, will have to be buried with his valuables. In order for the mummy to reach heaven or ‘eternal life’, the user needs to be able to add a specific score. In this example the puzzle contains the corpse and seven puzzle pieces. Each piece has two representations: one is the valuable item (+10 points) and the other one is the non valuable item (0 points). This way the user will finish the puzzle and find the artefacts that were valuable to that culture.
The TUI can be built with paper and eventually utilise different cultures.
The interface will be very similar to the actions where the use is capable of placing different puzzle pieces on the burial.
By comparing both interfaces, I hope to evidence how they can benefit into the analysis process of children, especially when presenting objects like this. It is not necessary to add the values of the objects, ne numerical value acts just as a method to reach a winning score.