“People in the Past: The Ancient Puebloan Farmers of Southwest Colorado” by Breznau

  • ©Theresa Breznau




    People in the Past: The Ancient Puebloan Farmers of Southwest Colorado



    People in the Past: The Ancient Puebloan Farmers of Southwest Colorado is currently installed as an exhibit at the Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores, Colorado, and was exhibited at the Houston Museum of Natural Science during the summer of 1998. It also won both first and second place in the 1998 National Association of Interpretation Awards (first place for the CD-ROM and second place for its companion teachers guide, “Classroom Activities”).This program is available as a CD-ROM for both Windows and Mac. The “Classroom Activities” guide for grades 4-12 is a 160- page book with lesson plans related to the program contents for language arts, math, social studies, science, and art. The CD-ROM is included with the book.
    The program explores Lowry Pueblo, a prehistoric Anasazi village in southwest Colorado, during the last days of an archaeological excavation. The Pueblo and the entire site have been recreated in 3D. As assistants to the lead archaeologist, users explore the area, the Pueblo, and the archaeologist’s tent, helping out with such tasks as piecing ceramics together, taking photographs, and excavating artifacts. In QuickTime videos, several archaeologists speak to the assistants as they explore. Hopi and Tewa people, descendants of the Anasazi who are the Puebloan people of today, speak throughout the program about their ancestors who lived in the village. They provide insights into their daily lives and culture.
    In many areas of the program, the assistants are able to go back in time, to AD 1125, and see life as it might have been lived through narrated 3D re-enactments and animations. Special features of the program include an animated corn grinding scene, recreations of rooms in the Pueblo, recreations of both the plaza and the fields throughout a full year’s seasons, and a nature walk through the canyons where participants can find the ancient Puebloan’s water source, a rock art panel, and native plants. The archaeologist’s tent is filled with books, maps, a microscope, a computer, a CD player, and a VCR, all of which the assistant can explore to uncover the methodology of contemporary archaeologists.
    “People in the Past” was created for the Anasazi Heritage Center with grants from the Colorado Historical Society. It was produced by Paradox Productions and Living Earth Studios, Inc.

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