# Lesson Plan

## Coin Archeology

Main Subject Area: Mathematics

Duration of Lesson:  Other minutes

Keywords:

• Coins
• Logical Reasoning
• Patterns
• Problem Solving

Brief Description:

In this multiple day lesson, students will search for coins with a metal detector, and will plot their discovery location on a grid. Students will using coordinates to represent locations of coins found.

National Standard(s):

• Data Analysis and Probability
• Measurement

• Science as inquiry
• Science in personal and social perspectives

Objectives:

Students will be able to create a grid on graph paper representing the search area and use coordinates to represent locations of coins found with a metal detector. Students will be able to record the locations, depths, and other information about coins found with a metal detector on their grids and in a group "catalogue of finds." (Older) Students will be able to compare the dates of all of the coins found to determine if a correlation exists between their relative depth in the soil and the length of time they have been buried.

Materials (online):

Materials (offline):

Coins - various denominations of 20th century coins (the number buried will vary depending upon group size and search area)

2 Metal Detectors

Clipboard / graph paper / pencil(s) (one set per team)

75 to 100 Flag markers (either commercial or sections of hangers with flagging material tied to each)

Metric Rulers (one per team)

Overhead Projector Transparency (with matching graph paper grid)

Sharpie Markers (8 color set)

Coins Used in Lesson:

U.S. coins of all denominations with dates spanning the 20th century (if possible, include Mercury and Roosevelt silver dimes, Standing Liberty silver quarters, Walking Liberty, Franklin, and Kennedy silver half dollars among this selection)

Procedures (online):

Procedures (offline):

In the field: Success at metal detecting is never guaranteed. There are many variables, and the teacher will benefit by preparing the search area months before the lesson in order to ensure that students will acquire data which is reasonable for the allocated lesson time.

1. Using 2 metal detectors (pre-checked for compatibility), locate coins in the search area and have a team of students place small flags representing "hits" for subsequent digging.

2. Students are pre-assigned a part of the search area to dig up and record information (date, depth, precise location) about each coin found. All finds are catalogued by the teams and the locations are marked on their graph paper.

In the Classroom:

1. Each team's search grid is placed under the transparency and identifying symbols for each type of find are transferred to the grid with different colored Sharpies (during the data transfer, students compare their finds with others in the class).

2. Hypotheses can be made at this time and analysis of the data follows.

3. Analysis takes place on different levels; social/ geographic: patterns of coin loss in an area, circulation/economics: wear on coins versus time in the ground, soil science: depth of coins versus date, etc.

4. Conclusions can be drawn after small group and whole class discussions - each student is responsible for his or her own written conclusion and the conclusions can be assembled into a poster which provides an overview of the project.

Assessment / Evaluation:

To determine if the basic objectives have been met, the students will be given graphing exercises which demonstrate their ability to set-up and use a graph to represent a search area and show proficiency with the use of coordinates on their graphs. Lesson evaluation may be in the form of post project surveys and discussions.

Differentiated Learning Options:

n/a