Rock Art in the National Parks

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Link to Resource: http://www.earthsciweek.org/classroom-activities/rock-art-national-parks
Resource Type:Classroom Activities; Curricula and Instruction
Grade Level:
3 4 5 6 7 8
Language:English
Organization:American Geosciences Institute (AGI); Earth Science Week (ESW); National Park Service (NPS)
Summary:Human beings have been linked to earth materials since prehistoric times. They used caves for shelter, shaped rocks into stone implements, and later refined metals to make tools. Beyond practical purposes, Earth materials also were used to make pigments for paint. Rock walls became canvases where ancient artists expressed themselves. In this exercise, we will explore the link between Earth materials and art. Rock art — including petroglyphs (designs chipped into rock) and pictographs (designs painted on rock) — may be found in many national parks of the United States. These petroglyphs and pictographs consist of painted or chipped symbols resembling people, animals, plants, natural features, and abstract images. We can learn much about ancient peoples by studying the art left behind on rocks. Archaeologists have discovered cave drawings as ancient as 30,000 years old in parts of Europe and Asia. Rock art is a priceless part of our geologic heritage that must be protected — so please do not touch the art and do not deface the paint or rock “canvas.”
Earth Science Big Ideas:Big Idea 7; Big Idea 9
NGSS Crosscutting Concepts:Scale, proportion, and quantity
Subjects: 6-8; earth science week; elementary school; geology; k-3; k-4; k-5; k-5 geosource; k-6; k-8; middle school; nps; rocks
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