Sir John and the Knights of the Long Table

Eleven of us live here at beautiful Schamelot, and we have a small 20 acre farm of chickens, emus, two dogs, 13 or so cats and a cockateil named Sassafrass.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Multi-dimensional Learning Activity

No! These are not dinosaur bones!

Today my husband's sister brought over another archeological find--a mid-nineteenth century bed pan, broken into about 15 pieces, which was found at a Union Civil War camp. Although one cannot say for sure it was probably requisitioned from a local home since it's pretty unlikely that a Yankee soldier would have carried it down here with him.

First we had to try to piece together the puzzel. We used the variations in the color, the irregularities in the glaze (those round splotches) as clues to where each piece went.

It took a little inspecting of each of the pieces but once we got going it was pretty easy.

We used glue very much like Elmer's School glue (this is so that mistakes can be easily undone with a gentle bath of water) to affix the pieces to one another. Then we set them in a bucket of sand to hold them up as they dried.

The tapered front piece proved a bit of a challenge and had to be held together by hand while it dried.

D.P at White Oak Museum photocopied this page from a book that shows several different kinds of bedpans in use during the mid-nineteenth century. The one on the right at the top of the left-hand column is the one we were working on.

We used a soft paint brush to dust the sand off the dried pieces.

This is the finished product. As you can see not all the pieces were there, but how very cool to put back together something that's been buried for more than a century. We did history, archeology and arts and crafts all in one sitting! Amateur archeologists really "dig" homeschooling!

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