Teacher's Guide for DIG TM Catacombs: Hidden UndergroundJuly 2004
Teacher Guide prepared by: Peggy Epstein, Language Arts Teacher, 25 years experience from Hickman Mills School District, Kansas City, Missouri. Epstein has a Master's Degree in Instruction and Curriculum from the University of Missouri at Kansas City.
For the issue as a whole:
- to increase historical perspective and understanding about both the gathering of artifacts and the preservation of historic sites
- to increase understanding of geography and the relationship between cultures
- to improve comprehension through the use of organizational activities
- to practice writing skills through a variety of activities, both practical and creative
- to develop and enrich vocabulary
- to participate in an activity with a partner
For each student, enlarge and reproduce a copy of the map at the bottom of the first page of the table of contents. Ask students to number a sheet of paper and enter the names of the countries next to each number.
For "Fairy Chimneys" (pages 6-9)
As the various articles in the issue are read, instruct students to enter the following information:
NOTE: This activity is a little trickier than it sounds; you might ask students to compare answers when they've finished and then recheck articles if necessary. Or you might have the entire class fill in the information together as you work through the articles.
- Give the name of one site which can be found in this area.
- Tell whether this site is one from which artifacts have been gathered or one that is being kept intact - just the way it was found.
Question: What was it like to be a troglodyte 1000 years ago?
For "Cover-Up" (pages 10-13)
Answer: Time travel to Cappadocia and write a one-page first person diary entry which includes the following information:
- You interview a man making a rock-cut house. How does he do it? How long will it take him?
- You visit Derinkuyu. Describe what you see there.
- Tell about an experience you have with a rolling stone door.
- What pleasant and unpleasant characteristics of the Underground Cities did you find out about?
- End your diary entry by telling why you would or would not like to visit Cappadocia in the present day.
For "Back to the Ice Age" (pages 17-19)
- With entire class discuss reasons why the water supply in Megiddo needed to be hidden.
- Pair students and provide each pair with drawing paper.
- Ask students to sketch the location of the spring. Then, starting from two different spots, draw the tunnel indicating how the two teams of diggers worked separately until they eventually came together to complete the tunnel.
For "A House for All Seasons" (pages 20-22)
- Ask students to imagine that it is 1000 years in the future. Archaeologists have just come upon a new find, one that is incredibly well preserved. That site is each student's room. The archaeologists have decided that, like La Garma, ordinary persons will not be allowed into this site, and the items will not be removed and taken to a museum. Instead the site will
remain just as it is and people will view it on a screen from a remote location.
- Ask students to write a report on what they see on that screen - from the perspective of someone who knows very little of our culture today. Include information on the size and structure of the room as well as at least a dozen objects found in the room. NOTE: This activity would work especially well as a homework assignment because it can best be completed "at the site."
For "Bones into Ashes" (pages 24-26)
- Begin this activity by reading together the "Dig Data" on page 23.
- Then ask students to match each item on the following list to the correct language or culture (choices: Roman, French, Greek, Arabic, Latin). Give the meaning or translation for each as well.
Maison de la Péche
Maisson de la Chasse
Study Guide for this article:
For "Forgotten Tunnels" (pages 28-30)
- Cremation was the most common form of burial used in Europe long before ________________.
- Where did the wood for the fires come from?
- What happens to bones when they are burned?
- At this time bones from cremations were buried in _____ with _____-_____ lids.
- What was one of the cheapest way to bury someone?
- Who was most likely to be buried in one of these (#5)?
- What is comminution?
- How were most servants buried?
- How were their masters buried?
- Briefly describe a catacomb.
- Suggest that "Disasters Waiting to Happen" could be an alternate title for this article. Ask students to choose one of the two titles and write it on their papers.
- Students who chose the original title will be completing their assignment using the Civil War tunnels as a basis for their work; students who chose the alternate title will be using the World War I tunnels.
- Ask students to create a "prose poem" by choosing eight sentences in the article to copy, in list form, under their title, deleting any words they wish. To get students started, you might want to suggest the following possible first lines for each:
- The original sentence (WWI): "From the end of 1914 to the beginning of 1918, the war in Europe was almost at a standstill, with neither side gaining the advantage."
The "poetic version": "War in Europe at standstill, neither side gaining."
- The original sentence (Civil War): "At Petersburg, men of the 48th Pennsylvania Regiment, who were coal miners in civilian life, volunteered to dig tunnels deep beneath Confederate lines and pack them with explosives."
The "poetic version": "Men of the 48th dig tunnels and pack them with