American Indian Experience Page Slider

American Indian Experience

Students use and read maps and timelines, handle authentic and reproduction artifacts, and engage in a variety of hands-on activities representative of Ohio’s prehistoric peoples and historic Indians. Following a brief orientation presentation, including a discussion on how historians study the past, students will break into groups and move between six stations where they will learn about topics ranging from crafts to games and clothing to ways of life. Following the program, students will compare the cultural practices and products of Ohio’s prehistoric peoples and historic Indians and draw conclusions. This highly active experience is best set up in a large activity area, gymnasium, or outside. The History to Go Van is available to visit multiple classes at your school for a half-day (3 hours) or a full-day (6 hours).


Primary Objective: Through hands-on activities, students will experience some cultural practice and products of prehistoric peoples and historic Indians.


Location: An Ohio History Connection representative travels to your school.


Availability: Please contact Scheduling and Reservation Office for availability.


Time Allowance: Half-Day – 3 hours

                             Full-Day – 6 hours


Cost: Half-Day -- $200.00 plus roundtrip mileage

          Full-Day -- $350.00 plus roundtrip mileage


The school will be responsible for providing 6 volunteers who can help during entire program.


What will the students do? Activities may include:

What’s It? Table: Students handle authentic and reproduction artifacts, view a timeline, and physical and political maps relating to Ohio’s prehistoric peoples and historic Indians.

Trading Post: Students (Indians) role play with presenter (fur trader) and learn about the fur trade, the practice of bartering, and local and imported resources and goods of the time.

Atlatl Throwing: Students use this innovative technological achievement of prehistoric technology to throw spears.

Life Skills Games: Student play games of skill designed to help prehistoric and historic Indians hone hunting skills.

Food Preparation: Student use bone knives and a mortar and pestle to learn about methods of prehistoric and historic food preparation.

Pump Drills: Students make necklaces to take home by using an historic Indian pump drill to make a hole in a medallion or shell.




Archaeologist: A person who studies ancient cultures through examination of their buildings, tools, and other objects.

Artifact: A material object of a culture such as a tool, an article of clothing, or a prepared food.

Cultural Practice: A pattern of behavior accepted by a society.

Cultural Product: A tangible (e.g. a painting, a cathedral, a mosque, a piece of literature, a pair of chopsticks) or intangible (e.g. an oral tale, a dance, a sacred ritual, a system of education) aspect produced by a cultural group.

Culture: Learned behavior of a group of people, which includes their belief systems and languages, their social relationships, their institutions and organizations, and their material goods such as food, clothing, buildings, tools, and machines.

Physical Map: A portrayal on a flat surface of the physical features of the Earth (e.g. landforms, elevations).

Political Map: A portrayal on a flat surface of the political features of the Earth (e.g. international boundaries, capitals, political subdivisions).

Prehistoric: Belonging to or existing in times before recorded history.

Primary Source: An account of an event by someone who was present at the event.

Secondary Source: An account of an event by someone who was not present at the event.

Shard: A fragment or broken piece, esp. of pottery.

Sinew: A thread or cord made from uncured animal tendon.

Academic Standards:
Fourth Grade:  SS 4.2, SS 4.3
Eighth Grade:  SS 8.1