Guard Archaeological Preserve Grand Opening for Public Field Season is June 1st, 2024

ARI Kids: Field Archaeology

Event Description:

The Jr. Field Archaeology experience at the Archaeological Research Institute is designed to provide youth between the ages of 5 and 11 with an immersive and educational introduction to the fascinating world of archaeology. Through a series of engaging activities, young participants have the opportunity to learn about the methods and techniques used by professional archaeologists during excavations.

The experience begins with the River of Time presentation, where the junior archaeologists are introduced to the concept of time and how archaeology helps us understand the past. Through interactive displays, visual aids, and storytelling, the participants gain an understanding of the importance of preserving and studying archaeological sites.

Next, the junior archaeologists are taken to a simulated excavation site of a historic homestead at the Guard Archaeological Preserve, only steps away from a Fort Ancient Village site that is over 800 years old. Here, they have the chance to put their newfound knowledge into practice. Equipped with child-sized tools such as trowels and brushes, they carefully dig in designated areas, uncovering buried artifacts. Under the guidance of experienced archaeologists, they learn proper excavation techniques, including how to carefully remove layers of soil, document their findings, and handle artifacts with care.

Once the artifacts are excavated, the participants move to the screening area. Here, they use screens to sift through the soil, separating smaller artifacts and fragments from the larger debris. This activity teaches them the importance of meticulous attention to detail and the need for patience in the archaeological process.

After screening, the junior archaeologists engage in site mapping. They learn how to create accurate maps of the excavation area, marking the locations where artifacts were found. This exercise helps them understand the spatial relationships between different objects and contributes to their overall understanding of the site’s layout.

Throughout the Jr. Field Archaeology experience, the young participants are encouraged to ask questions, share their observations, and think critically about the artifacts they discover. Archaeologists and instructors provide guidance and explanations, fostering a supportive learning environment that nurtures curiosity and a deeper appreciation for the past.

By participating in this simulated excavation, youth ages 5-11 not only gain hands-on experience in the field of archaeology but also develop important skills such as teamwork, attention to detail, critical thinking, and an understanding of the importance of preserving our cultural heritage. The Jr. Field Archaeology experience at the Archaeological Research Institute is a memorable and enriching journey into the world of archaeology for aspiring young explorers.

How To Prepare:

Wear hiking clothes that can get dirty. Bring plenty of water & snacks. Sunscreen, hats, bug spray, sturdy shoes, or hiking boots are recommended.




Wednesdays & Saturdays 10am or 2pm


ARI Base Camp 126 W High Street Lawrenceburg IN 47025

Age Requirement:


Activity Level:

Active (kneeling, standing for long periods of time, etc.)


1-2 Hours
Book Experience

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