In the last week of August, over 80 S1 pupils took place in a community excavation at Newhailes in Musselburgh. They joined archaeologists from Archaeology Scotland and the National Trust for Scotland as they were looking for the lost cascade and pool from the 18th century pleasure garden at Newhailes.
All pupils had training supplied by archaeologists – how to measure out the site to be excavated; how to excavate a piece of ground; how to record finds and the opportunity to handle, and clean , finds which had been buried for .300 years. The archaeologists were most impressed when some pupils uncovered the side of the pond –buried for 300 years- and shells which came from the Caribbean 300 years ago.
Pupils also visited a full scale Viking encampment. They saw displays of armoury and had the opportunity to handle replica axes , swords and spears . They also visited workshops, a smithy and saw displays of Viking violence !!!
This visit provided pupils with the opportunity to participate in a range of other activities – ‘Poos from the Past’ and CSI Musselburgh – how did he/she die ?
Pupils had many opportunities to develop their skills of enquiry and analysis.
The archaeologists also commented on the excellent behaviour , attitude and enthusiasm of the pupils ! Well done to everyone – a great day out which was enjoyed by all.