Monday, August 2, 2010
Student Megan Anderson in Belize
I was trained in archaeological survey at the site; I used a total mapping station, working its computer, holding prisms, and cutting down vines with my machete for a clear shot (after a day and a few good laughs at my over-enthusiasm, the native workmen taught me how to wield my tool the right way). The best part of this field school was the director's desire to instill in us the importance of using different disciplines to understand the past. For several days I crashed off-trail through the jungle with a pair of biologists and measured trees. The data they collected were used to understand what the forest would have looked like in pre-classic times.
Belize is a beautiful and interesting country, and the archaeologists who work there are passionate about what they are doing and ager to share that knowledge with students and the world. This field school allowed me to take archaeology out of the classroom and experience it in the real world.