As an educational museum, the Museum of Anthropology has developed a series of supplemental teaching trunks complete with artifacts and lesson plans that meet the Utah State Board of Education Core Curriculum standards. These kits can be used by teachers, families and community groups to help inspire curiosity, discovery and learning. Our docents also take the trunks into the community for outreach programs. Please contact us for more details if you are interested in borrowing a trunk or hosting a program on one of our six trunk themes: Great Basin Archaeology, African Culture, Egyptian Civilization, World Music, Ancient Civilizations of Central and South America, and American Weavings.
Information about the resources found in each trunk is listed below. Our brochure may also be downloaded HERE
The trunks have been redesigned in 2013 with generous grant funding from the Utah Humanities Council. Previous support for the teaching trunks was made possible by a grant from Utah Arts and Museums.
Teaching Trunk Topics:
Great Basin Archaeology
Our newly rehabilitated Great Basin Archaeology teaching
trunk, which complements the Museum’s four exhibit displays on prehistoric life
in the Great Basin and Utah, features a wide array of hands-on learning
materials that highlight the lifeways of some of our region’s earliest
inhabitants. The trunk includes replica projectile point, foodstuff, and
pottery displays; a basketry technique display; a portable metate and mano;
faunal and botanical remains comparison cards; and a wide variety of books that
bring to life the experiences of the Shoshone and Fremont peoples. Two lesson
plan binders feature fun, hands-on learning activities that meet state or
national curriculum standards for all grades.
Sample Lesson Plans:
Great Basin Teaching Packet
This packet contains one lesson for each grade level from K-6 on the following topics of Paleoindians, Hunter-Gatherers, Fremont Culture, Native Tribes of Utah, and Utah at European Contact (Mountain Men, Pioneers, and the U.S. Government).
This trunk explores African history, music, and culture, with an emphasis on folklore traditions. The trunk includes: several new DVD documentaries, story and craft activity books, a beautifully crafted mini wood drum, Akan wood mask, wood fertility doll statuette, "Design your own African Masks" activity materials, African animal figurines, and photo teaching cards that illustrate Africa's vibrant material culture. Two lesson plan binders feature fun, hands-on learning activities that meet state or national curriculum standards.
Our Egyptian Civilization teaching trunk complements the
Museum’s Death on the Nile: Afterlife in
Egypt’s New Kingdom
exhibit, and features a wonderful assortment of replica
artifacts that bring to Ancient Egypt to life, including: a mini Rosetta Stone;
sarcophagi; canopic jars; and several figurines and statuettes. Students can
learn about the mummification process with our "Mummify an Apple” activity, and
learn to write their name in hieroglyphics. The trunk also contains a variety
of engaging books, DVD documentaries, and games for use in the classroom. Two
lesson plan binders feature fun, hands-on learning activities that meet state
or national curriculum standards.
This trunk is ideal
for all ages and surveys musical instruments and traditions from around the
world. The trunk boasts a fantastic collection of Smithsonian Folkways musical
compilations from Australia, Jamaica, and Africa, along with accompanying lesson
plans. The trunk features a variety of fun instruments that students can handle
and play, including: a thumb piano; bullroarer; bamboo guiro and shaker;
tambourine; maracas; an African style Djembe; a bamboo rainstick; Andean
panpipe; colorful rhythm sticks; and Peruvian ocarina. Books explore
ethnomusicology, percussion instruments from around the world, the Ukulele, and
ancient Mexican myths regarding the origins of music. Two lesson plan binders
feature fun, hands-on learning activities that meet state or national
Ancient Civilizations of Central and South America
This teaching trunk, suitable for all ages, explores the
ancient civilizations of the Aztec, Inca, and Maya. The trunk includes CDs that
allow students to experience traditional music while engaging with musical
instruments, such as rhythm sticks and cymbals, to develop fine arts skills.
Books highlight the geography, history, and language of the Aztec, Inca, and
Maya. Two replica Mayan ceramic vases and gold statues bring to life material
culture, and DVD documentaries explore Inca mummies and the lost kingdom of the
Maya. Students can learn how to make traditional musical instruments, count
with a quipu, and more. Lesson plan binders feature hands-on learning
activities that meet state or national standards.
Sample Lesson Plans:
2nd Grade: Aztec Music
5th Grade: Masks of the Inca
6-8th Grade: PE Ancient Latin American Games
9th Grade: Ancient Mesoamerican Geography
Ideal for students of
all ages, this trunk highlights principles of folklore through an understanding of how
folkloric figures and themes are woven into Navajo and Peruvian textiles, and how
stories and history were transmitted through quilts constructed by slaves in
early America. The trunk features beautifully illustrated books on early
European, African, and Native American textile traditions, accompanied by DVD
documentaries such as PBS’ award-winning Quiltmakers
of Gee’s Bend, A Century of Quilts, Navajo Weaving,
and Lakota Quillwork.
Students can learn
basic principles behind textile production by dyeing their own wool, examining quillwork
materials, and understanding how silk is produced. A Navajo saddle blanket,
assorted fur pieces, and colorful quilting squares provide an additional
dimension to hands-on learning. A lesson plan binder features a variety of
learning activities that assist in meeting state or national standards.