From Yawn to Yarn – Writing Presentations that Engage Audiences (FULL - REGISTRATION CLOSED)

Holly Martelle, Timmins Martelle Heritage Consultants Inc., London, ON

Paul Racher, Archaeological Research Associates Ltd., Kitchener, ON

Alicia Hawkins, University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, ON

Have you ever wondered why some people are able to give presentations that pack rooms and inspire great questions, while other people’s presentations leave you confused or possibly snoring? Whether you are preparing a talk for a community group or for an academic audience, the basics of effectively communicating your message remain the same.

This will be a “hands-on” workshop. Participants should bring presentation ideas and be willing to discuss them with other group members in small breakout sessions.

Topics to be discussed include: finding the core idea that drives the story; structuring the narrative; performance and the use of authentic voice; tools to support the story, including clear data presentation (maps, tables, graphics); how to acknowledge those who contributed; and tips for finishing touches (tech and timing).

Building a Model of the Future:  An Argument for Dioramas and Immersive Learning

Erin Baxter, Royal Canadian Military Institute, Toronto, ON

Museum dioramas sometimes get a bad rap as being out-dated, static, and guilty of promoting colonialist mindsets. However, with a bit of careful consideration and planning, I argue that dioramas offer a strong basis for developing Quality Education, Community Engagement, and Industry Innovations. Dioramas can create insightful, immersive educational experiences for visitors of all ages and backgrounds, not just in the natural history galleries, but in ancient history and world culture exhibits as well. Further, when paired together with Augmented Reality, another valuable tool, dioramas can inspire independent, exploratory learning, increase accessibility of exhibits for the physically disabled, and extend exhibit experiences beyond the physical limits of museums.

For this workshop, participants will be encouraged to share their own experiences involving museum dioramas and discuss what makes them effective or in need of improvement. They will then take part in a group-based, case study exercise to design an interactive diorama based on our discussion.

Presenting Truth: Modelling Respectful Engagement with Indigenous Neighbours & Partners

Dr. Terri-Lynn Brennan, Inclusive Voices Inc., Wolfe Island, ON

Laura Phillips, Cultural Studies, Queen's University, Kingston, ON

I want to talk a little bit now about Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg history. The ones that think they are smart from the university say that we came to this part of Ontario 9,500 years ago… Archaeologists, the ones that suffer from the disease of archaeology, [now] came up with a site at Burley Falls which they dated as 12,000 years ago. They fight amongst themselves as to whether or not that is true. They argue if they got the date right, if they sent it to the right lab. To me, it doesn’t really matter. I’ll show you the way I see it.                                                                 

                                                                                                         ~Gidigaa Migizi (Doug Williams)

This workshop will take participants through a process of learning new approaches to archaeological research, survey, collection and reporting/exhibit presentations as collaboratively demonstrated through Archaeologist and Inter-Cultural Professional Dr. Brennan (Kanien'kehá:ka of Six Nations of the Grand River/British) and Museology/Cultural Studies Scholar Ms. Phillips (Anglo/European Settler).

We will examine how, why, and what types of archaeological information is shared, who the authorities are, and what different perspectives need to be present. Connecting one to (re)Indigenized land, space, and worldview in exercises of de-colonial interpretation of ‘artifacts’, ‘archives’, and ‘history’ will inspire colleagues to think more deeply about what it is they do based on what they are and represent.

This workshop intends to leave participants with actionable methods and approaches to changing, adapting and redesigning how they define archaeological ethics and standards with a clearer vision to reciprocity and reconciliation.

*Pre-event readings will be shared with registrants a week before the event.

Workshop Outline:

Thanksgiving Address


Thinking, Knowing, Doing

Overview, Break Out Room Discussions:

1. Archaeological Research

2. Archaeological Survey

3. Archaeological Collection

4. Archaeological Reporting / Exhibition

Discussion, Q & A

Closing / Wrap Up

Using Projectile Point Trait Clustering in Relative Temporal Dating Techniques

Darci Clayton, Parks Canada

This workshop will provide an overview of how trends in projectile point technology changed throughout the past 11,500 years in Ontario with a specific focus on the benefits of recognizing more general trait clustering for relative temporal dating rather than relying on specific point typologies. While certain projectile point styles can be clearly recognized and prescribed to a specific set of cultures and temporal dates, others often overlap significantly in morphology, materials, and manufacturing techniques. The workshop will discuss how to use these characteristics effectively for relative temporal dating using images of projectile points from archaeological sites across Ontario as examples. The discussion will reinforce the fact that projectile point manufacture is inherently variable and explain some prominent influencing factors, both environmental and cultural, and how this contributes to different projectile point style variations that vary over both time and geographical areas.

Rural Historical Farmstead Sites: Approach and Technical Methodologies

Meagan Brooks, Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, Toronto, ON

All rural historical farmstead archaeological sites have some degree of cultural heritage value or interest (CHVI). However, they are also one of the most common types of archaeological sites in Ontario, as well as one of the most productive in terms of artifacts. Following consultation with licensed archaeologists, in 2014 the ministry released the Archaeology of Rural Historical Farmsteads: Draft Technical Bulletin for Consultant Archaeologists in Ontario. The bulletin was intended to help licensees more effectively assess rural historical farmstead sites. This workshop will discuss this guidance and the evolving approach to and technical methodologies for the archaeology of this specific site type.

Pre-Contact Pottery of Ontario

Steven Dorland - Dept. of Anthropology, University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, ON

Brad Hyslop - Vesselquest, Hudson, ON

David Smith - Dept. of Anthropology, University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, ON

Jill Taylor-Hollings - Dept. of Anthropology, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, ON

This educational workshop will combine both a northern and southern perspective to provide an overview of and discuss relevant issues about pre-contact, contact and contemporary indigenous pottery within the province of Ontario. Modern demographics, geographical variations and the vast area encompassed within the boundaries that define Ontario have resulted in a north-south divergence of research and understanding with respect to the pottery produced by cultural groups during the Woodland period and later times. Representatives from both the northern and southern parts of the province will present a general outline regarding pottery research that has been carried out within their respective area and discuss some of the current issues that require attention.

Contact us
Address: 1444 Queen Street East, Suite 102, Toronto, ON M4L 1E1

Phone: +1 (416) 406-5959

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The Ontario Archaeological Society is a registered charitable organization that promotes the ethical practice of archaeology. The general public, students and professional alike are encouraged to become members of the Society and to support its co-ordinating role in helping to record and preserve our non-renewable cultural heritage. Click here to view membership details.

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