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in Teaching
edited by

Patricia C. Rice
West Virginia University

David W. McCurdy
Macalester College

Scott A. Lukas
Lake Tahoe Community College

Foreword by Conrad P. Kottak

Introduction by Yolanda T. Moses


Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458

All rights reserved

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


Printed in the United States of America




Editors Preface


Annotated Index by Topic, Learning Outcomes, and Student Activities


Forward by Conrad P. Kottak


Introduction by Yolanda T. Moses


Part 1: General
Listening to Each Other: Quote Cards (Peter Wogan)


Commercial Films (Movies) As Effective Instructional Aids

in Anthropology and Beyond (Lorenzo Covarrubias)


Using Ted Talks in Anthropology Courses (Bruce M. Rowe)

9 11

First Day Demographics (Karen Dalke)

12 13

The use of Essays: Developing Critical Thinking Skills Outside of the Classroom to
Promote a Long-Term Understanding of Anthropological Terminology
(Jessica Einhorn)
14 18
Part II: Archaeology
The Artifact Game: A Warm-Up Exercise For Archaeology (Lynne Miller)

19 20

Comparing Archaeological Sampling Strategies in an Introductory Classroom

(Jane Eva Baxter)

21 26

The End Game: Teaching the Collapse of Complex Societies

(James L. Fitzsimmons)

27 34

Part III: Bioanthropology

The Candy Gene Pool (Lori Barkley)

35 39

Whats So Special About Homo erectus? Teaching Human Origins to a Young

Audience (Louise Tokarsky-Unda)

40 42

Human Variation: Data Collection and Analysis (Patricia C. Rice)

43 51

Zoo Teaching Strategy (Barbara J. King)

52 55

Using Star Trek to Explore Human Origin Models and Human Variation
(Daryl G. Frazetti)

57 60

Using Experimental History of Science in Teaching Biological Anthropology

(Goran trkalj)

61 67

Teaching Evolution (Mark Cohen)

68 71

Slurpee , Silly Putty , and the Lego Killer: The Anatomy of a Crime Scene
(Keith P. Jacobi)



72 76

Part IV: Cultural Anthropology

Nacirema and Ah-Ha Moments (Peter Wogan)

77 81

Economic Monopoly (Pete Brown)

82 86

Teaching Ethics in Introductory Anthropology Courses (Amanda Paskey and

Anastasia Panagakos)

87 90

Myth or Legend: You Decide (Margaret A. Karnyski)

91 95

Opening Up Mic Night: Using Karaoke to Teach Gender (Andrea Freidus and
Linda Whiteford)

96 99

Is Cultural Evolutionism Ethnocentric? Hands-On Introduction to

Guttman Scaling (Robert Bates Graber)

100 103

Worth a Thousand Words? Studying Images on the Covers of Introductory

Cultural Anthropology Texts (Joyce D. Hammond)

104 109

Using Wikis in Anthropology Courses (Mark Moritz)

110 113

Tracking Scripts: Mothers Little Helper and the Value of Old Anthropology
(Michael Oldani)
114 118
Demonstrating Balanced Reciprocity and Fairness (Alexander H. Bolyanatz)

119 123

Friends and Relatives: Using Incest to Make Kinship Memorable

(Robert Fletcher)

124 129

Kula Ring Review Session (Eric Thompson)

130 133

From Sensitivity to Intelligence: A Test of Cultural Constructs

(Richard Robbins)

134 136


Stratified Monopoly and Social Inequality (Deb Rotman and Mona Danner)
Teaching Authenticity (Scott A. Lukas)

137 144
145 148

Like a Fish in Water: Helping Students Identify the Role of Culture in Their Lives
(Amy Hirshman)
149 152
Dobe Ju/Hoansi Kinship and Marriage Game (Eric Thompson)

153 164

Imaging America (Keith V. Bletzer)

165 169

Revisiting the Kula: Understanding the Politics of Economic Networks

(Laura C. Zanotti and Ismael Vaccaro)

170 178

Lori Barkley (Selkirk College)
Jane Eva Baxter (De Paul U)
Keith V. Bletzer (Arizona State U)
Alexander H. Bolyanatz (College of DuPage)
Pete Brown (U Wisconsin Oshkosh)
Mark Cohen (SUNY Plattsburgh)
Lorenzo Covarrubias (St. Louis University)
Karen Dalke (U Wisconsin Green Bay)
Mona Danner (Old Dominion U)
Jessica Einhorn (Caada College)
James L. Fitzsimmons (Middlebury College)
Robert Fletcher (University For Peace)
Daryl G. Frazetti (Lake Tahoe CC)
Andrea Freidus (Michigan State U)
Robert Bates Graber (Truman State U)
Joyce D. Hammond (Western Washington U)
Amy J. Hirshman (West Virginia University)
Keith P. Jacobi (U Alabama)
Margaret A. Karnyski (U South Florida)
Barbara J. King (William and Mary College)
Scott A. Lukas (Lake Tahoe CC)
David W. McCurdy (Macalester College)
Lynne Miller (MiraCosta College)
Mark Moritz (Ohio State U)
Michael Oldani (U Wisconsin Whitewater)
Anastasia Panagakos (Cosumnes River College)
Amanda Paskey (Cosumnes River College)
Patricia C. Rice (West Virginia University)
Richard Robbins (SUNY Plattsburgh)
Deb Rotman (Notre Dame)
Bruce M. Rowe (Los Angeles Pierce College)
Goran trkalj (Macquarie U NSW)
Eric Thompson (National U of Singapore)
Louise Tokarsky-Unda (Somerset Academy For Health and Medical Sciences and
Raritan Valley Community College)
Ismael Vaccaro (McGill U)
Linda Whiteford (U of South Florida)
Peter Wogan (Williamette)
Laura C. Zanotti (Purdue)


Strategies for Teaching Anthropology is now in its 6th edition/volume with a total of 210
strategies for teaching our discipline, 35 new ones in this volume alone. We purposely do not
focus on pedagogy about teaching anthropology, as the 1997 The Teaching of Anthropology:
Problems, Issues, and Decisions, edited by C.P. Kottak, J.J. White, R.H. Furlow, and P.C. Rice
and published by Mayfield, covered pedagogy and specifically what to teach. It had little to say
about how to teach, an equally important topic. The six Strategies books focus on how to teach
If you look at the previous five volumes and compare them with this current volume, there
appear to be several trends. There are similar numbers of cultural anthropology strategies as
opposed to linguistic, archaeological, and biological anthropology strategies at least until this
volume, where there are no strategies specially focusing on linguistics. In all six volumes, the
major trend seems to focus on how to get students involved in classroom activities. Confucius
said it several thousand years ago: Hear and I forget; see and I remember; do and I understand.
Translated into the classroom, it strongly suggests that if all we do is lecture, students will forget
it all as soon as they take that final exam. If we lecture and show some sort of visuals or write on
the front board, they will remember at least part of what we tried to teach them after that last
exam, but if we engage them in activities in the classroom to bring home important concepts,
they will remember the activity as well as the concept far into the future. In this volume alone,
there are 24 strategies that focus on in-class activities.
We know there are times when we must lecture particularly in large classes, but we can
augment lectures with appropriate activities. Some of us are devotees of PowerPoint and some of
us have not had very good experiences with it, but we would probably all agree that at least some
amount of visuals in some form or another is important at certain times. So, too, are activities.
A second, though less obvious trend is the one toward playing games with anthropological
overtones. In this volume alone, there are two quite different games based on Monopoly, and one
based on SMUG. Although not based on organized games, in addition, we introduce you to the
Artifact Game, The End Game, and the Dobe Ju/Hoansi Kinship and Marriage Game.
A third trend sees more and more high technology in the classroom with strategies based on
using Wikis, Ted Talks, and PowerPoint in this volume.
Again, we present these strategies in a how to do it format, in the hope that interested readers
can either duplicate or modify the strategies that successful teachers have found work well in
their classroom. The annotated section before the strategies articles tells you the subject of each
strategy, followed by the expected learning outcomes, and what students actually do in the
classroom. If something catches your fancy, you can read the entire strategy.
Conrad Kottak, former chairperson of anthropology at the University of Michigan and author of
a number of introductory anthropology textbooks, has again written a foreword to the new
edition; he feels strongly that good teachers can be helped by learning how to teach using good
strategies. The same is true of Yolanda Moses, a former President of the American


Anthropological Association and the past President of the American Association of Higher
Education, who has again written our introduction. She obviously values the importance of
teaching and learning our discipline.
We want to thank Nancy Roberts who serves as our editor as well as being a Vice President and
Publisher at Pearson for again agreeing to publish these strategies. As a publisher, she knows that
excellence in teaching means that more and more students will flock to our anthropology
classrooms. And since Nancy has told us on numerous occasions, Keep them coming every two
years until I say stop, if you have a successful strategy to share with fellow teaching
anthropologists, dont wait for two years send an idea for the strategy to one of the editors and
we will go from there. If all three editors agree it is a good idea, it will be accepted for the 7 th
volume/edition immediately and we will work together to get it into our format. That next
volume will be out in 2011 in time for AAA meetings, but with a 2012 copyright. Hope to hear
from some of you.



(In alphabetical order of authors)
The Candy Gene Pool (Barkley)
the processes involved in evolution
how mutations, natural selection, gene flow, and genetic drift alter populations from
one generation to the next
after receiving their population (candy bars), students count individual alleles as the
population goes through the evolutionary processes.
Comparing Archaeological Sampling Strategies in an Introductory Classroom (Baxter)
archaeological sampling
how archaeologists sample using any of 3 strategies
groups use prepared ecological maps and candies substituting for zones and carry out
a sampling on paper.
Imaging America (Bletzer)
a visual image of America by first generation immigrants
how liberty, democracy, and freedom can be visualized and symbolized
in small groups, students redesign the Statue of Liberty to reflect immigrant ideals in a
modern era.
Demonstrating Balanced Reciprocity and Fairness (Bolyanatz)
using SMUG to teach comparative economics
all cultures in the world include fairness, balanced reciprocity, and costly punishment
Player l decides how much $ to give to Player 2 who in turn decides how much he/she
will accept; this results in a discussion of fairness, balanced reciprocity, and costly
Economic Monopoly (Brown)
local and global economics
the rules that govern different economies and what globalization does to each
students initially play Monopoly using the rules of one economic type, but then all
switch to globalization.
Teaching Evolution (Cohen)
teaching evolution via science
understanding science first, then evolution
discussion of science and evolution.


Commercial Films (Movies) as Effective Instructional Aids in Anthropology and Beyond

commercial films in class
depending on topic race, war, prehistory, etc.
students sit and watch appropriate films as if in a movie house and then discuss the
anthropological content.
First Day Demographics (Dalke)
first day demographics
who is in the class and where they are from
first in groups, students answer demographic questions about themselves and then
share with the rest of the class.
The Use of Essays: Developing Critical Thinking Skills Outside of the Classroom to
Promote a Long-Term Understanding of Anthropological Terminology (Einhorn)
outside of class essays
learn new anthropology vocabulary and how to use it properly
specific to the 6 essay topics such as visiting a zoo, going to a religious service
different from ones own, or attempting to identify the function of an artifact.
The End Game: Teaching the Collapse of Complex Societies (Fitzsimmons)
how/why complex societies collapse in game form
how complex societies in the past worked and the connections of economics, society,
and political complexities
students are given a particular role in Mayan society and choose which allowed
actions will give them prestige.
Friends and Relatives: Using Incest to Make Kinship Memorable (Fletcher)
incest, marriage rules, and kinship
that social organization in any culture is based on logical principles
students use an episode of Friends to guide a discussion on kinship.
Using Star Trek to Explore Human Origins Models and Human Variation (Frazetti)
Star Trek and bioanthropology subjects
how to decide what species are, the evolution of modern humans, and race
students watch one episode of Star Trek and enter into discussions on species,
evolution, and race.

Opening Up Mic Night: Using Karaoke to Teach Gender (Freidus and Whiteford)
using karaoke to understand gender
how to do participant observation; the difference between sex and gender; and how it
feels to deviate
using karaoke, students can embody their own gender or deviate into another.
Is Cultural Evolutionism Ethnocentric? Hands-On Introduction to Guttman Scaling
using Guttman Scaling to evaluate cultural evolution
how to use facts about different cultures to construct a Guttman Scalogram
students work individually or in groups to construct a scalogram and use it to discuss
ethnocentrism, cultural relativism, and cultural evolution.
Worth a Thousand Words? Studying Images on the Covers of Introductory Cultural
Anthropology Texts (Hammond)
analysis of cultural anthropology text covers
how to do discourse, content, and semiotic analysis
students analyze 6 cultural anthropology text covers and discuss findings in class.
Like a Fish in Water: Helping Students Identify the Role of Culture in Their Lives
culture in everyday life
that students are greatly affected by their own culture
on the first day of class, students fill out a card asking what they do in the morning;
the collective results are discussed later.
SlurpeeTM, Silly PuttyTM, and the LegoTM Killer: The Anatomy of a Crime Scene (Jacobi)
anthropological analysis of a crime scene
the role of anthropologists in real crime scene investigation using their expertise
students actually do a crime scene investigation, gathering evidence and being
involved in discussing its implications.
Myth or Legend: You Decide (Karnyski)
assessing the difference between myths and legends
how to apply criteria to stories to decide if they are myths or legends
in groups, students read 4 stories and conclude whether they are myths or legends.
Zoo Teaching Strategy (King)
primate observation in zoos


how to go beyond traditional observations (quantitative) and learn about primates

qualitatively; also learn about zoos outreach and animal care
students observe primates quantitatively and qualitatively and compare methods.
Teaching Authenticity (Lukas)
authenticity in culture
what the word means and what in American culture is authentic or inauthentic
in one exercise, groups discuss authenticity in the US; in another exercise, students do
fieldwork to see if one particular cultural complex is authentic or not.
The Artifact Game: A Warm-Up Exercise for Archaeology (Miller)
evaluating artifacts
how to describe and evaluate the function of artifacts
in small groups, students describe and then hypothesize about the function of a single
artifact and present findings to the class.
Using Wikis in Anthropology Courses (Moritz)
using Wikis in class
using a new technological service; reporting individual research
through individual and group assignments, students design Wikis.
Teaching Scripts: Mothers Little Helper and the Value of Old Anthropology (Oldani)
the Rx generation
students see how psychotropic drugs have affected American women
reading articles, observing Big Pharma ads, watching online pieces, and then
discussing the Rx generation.
Teaching Ethics in Introductory Anthropology Courses (Paskey and Panagakos)
ethical dilemmas
what ethical issues anthropologists deal with and how to solve them
reading scenarios about ethical dilemmas from AAA webpage and discussing the
issues in small groups.
Human Variation: Data Collection and Analysis (Rice)
data collection and analysis of human variation traits
the scope of human biovariation today using one group (class members) and how to
take and analyze human variation data
students play the role of both a native giving biological data and a professional
bioanthropologist collecting and then analyzing that data.


From Sensitivity to Intelligence: A Test of Cultural Constructs (Robbins)

evaluating intelligence tests
that any cultural construct is biased
students devise a test of sensitivity and give sensitivity scores to all; this becomes
adapted to intelligence testing.
Stratified Monopoly and Social Inequality (Rotman and Danner)
inequality in America
the perks that come from wealth in American society
students play Monopoly with different rules that mirror American social/economic
Using Ted Talks in Anthropology Courses (Rowe)
Ted Talks
depending on what is viewed, speakers have cutting edge ideas and inspire discussion
in or out of class, students view assigned talks and either write essays about them or
discuss them in class.
Using Experimental History of Science in Teaching Biological Anthropology (trkalj)
experimental and historical bioanthropology on race
how past scientists did their work
students repeat the experiment of Russian biochemist E.O. Manoiloff and compare
methods and results using modern equipment.
Kula Ring Review Session (Thompson)
using the Kula Ring to review for an exam
Kula Ring principles are reviewed as well as materials for the next exam
students exchange both questions likely to be on the next exam and their groups
necklace or armband.
Dobe Ju/Hoansi Kinship and Marriage Game (Thompson)
Ju/Hoansi kinship and marriage
how one group in the world gets its kids married according to their rules
members of 5 families use kinship diagrams, visit other families to find suitable
spouses for their kids, and get them married.
Whats So Special About Homo erectus? Teaching Human Origins to a Young Audience
how to make fire as a Homo erectus


how to use the Internet to make a PowerPoint presentation on fire making by

H. erectus.
in small groups, students research the topic and create a short PowerPoint to
demonstrate how H. erectus may have made and used fire.
Listening to Each Other: Quote Cards (Wogan)
quote cards
students learn that they, as well as the instructor and textbook authors, have something
to say
students write memorable class quotes and read them off as a basis for review session.
Nacirema and Ah-Ha Moments (Wogan)
the Nacirema who the are and why they are important
that American culture is no more or less exotic than any other and sometimes as
difficult to understand
after figuring out who the Nacirema are (that ah-ha moment), students write their own
Nacirema bits and the class has to guess what part of American culture it describes.
Revisiting the Kula: Understanding the Politics of Economic Networks (Zanotti and
the Kula Ring as a complex economic system
how complex non-western economics can be
students are given Kula items and trade items along with Kula instructions and attempt
to increase their original allotment.


Conrad P. Kottak
University of Michigan
We all have our teaching tricks, which we sometimes share, too rarely and usually only
anecdotally, with our colleagues. We may do this at meetings, conferences, or over lunch.
Usually, however, our focus at national meetings and professional conferences is the more
exalted realm of research. As anthropologists, we dont talk about how to teach as much as we
should. The Strategies series, of which this is the sixth independent volume, provides a welcome
forum for seasoned teaching anthropologists (some are repeat authors, but with new tips) to share
pedagogical techniques, knowledge, and observations with their fellows. In a sense, these
Strategies volumes are sequels to the 1997 The Teaching of Anthropology: Problems, Issues,
and Decisions, which I co-edited with Jane White, Richard Furlow, and Patricia Rice. The six
Strategies, how to volumes address the practical side of teaching anthropology.
Anthropologys breadth supports an array of teaching styles, approaches, and techniques,
and it is useful to have several more concrete strategies assembled here. This volume offers
numerous tricks for teaching in three of anthropologys subfields. (Teachers of linguistic
anthropology will have to consult earlier volumes.) As experienced teachers, we know that some
things work while others dont, and that we must tailor our teaching to fit particular audiences.
The strategies we use with undergraduates may or may not be effective with graduate students.
One strategy that can work at both levels, when used properly, is the team project. In a large
class, such projects have the added advantage of reducing our workload, permitting us, say, to
read fifteen papers instead of thirty. Teamwork is a tradition in archaeology and biological
anthropology, but such joint work poses a challenge to the lone ethnographer model that has
long, and probably unfortunately, dominated cultural anthropology. I have found, however, that
joint writing projects, especially involving teams of two students who are allowed to choose their
own partner, enhance the quality of presentation. Students have to get their points across to each
other before trying to explain them to me. Better, clearer writing and higher grades result, along
with the realization that even cultural anthropologists can work effectively in teams.
Among the many useful teaching tips included in this and previous volumes are strategies
that can help us with parts of the introductory course that our students may find particularly
challenging, such as genetics, comparative kinship, or zoological taxonomy. Papers in this
volume offer tricks for making comprehensible several of anthropologys more unfamiliar or
esoteric topics. Examples include archaeological sampling, Guttman scaling, ethics, history of
science, and the kula.
The teaching tricks offered here range from specific to very general applicability. Some
strategies have particular goals, e.g., devising zoo projects, or teaching about Homo erectus,
human variation, or the fall of complex societies. Other strategies can be applied to a variety of
courses. Examples of these more general tips apply to essay writing and critical thinking, using
movies as instructional aids, listening to each other, and using Nacireman examples. Almost
everyone who teaches introductory anthropology has learned the utility of invoking the familiar
to illustrate the novel. Students appreciate American (and Nacireman) culture examples, whether


we are teaching about kinship, genetics, race, gender, rituals, or values. The popular culture
examples here range from karaoke (used to teach about gender), to Star Trek (human origins and
variation), to Monopoly (economic anthropology and stratification), to Slurpee, Silly Putty, and
Lego (forensic anthropology).
This volume enhances anthropological pedagogy by assembling tricks of the trade from
anthropologists working in a wide range of teaching settings. For those of us who value teaching,
which, after all, is what most of us are paid to do for a living, this book, once read, should be
placed on an easily reachable shelf right next to the first five Strategies for Teaching
Anthropology. This sixth edition brings the total number of strategies to around 200. You need
all six volumes.


Yolanda T. Moses
University of California Riverside
The successful sixth edition of Strategies in Teaching Anthropology presents 35 new articles that
explore the teaching of anthropology across three of the four traditional sub-fields of
anthropology. With the four sub-fields, Cultural-Social, Biological, Archaeology, and
Linguistics, there are also two dimensions within anthropology: research and applied studies.
Anthropology in the United States is not usually taught in high schools, so the first time most
students are exposed to the subject is at the college or university level. Consequently, the first
exposure to anthropology and how it is taught is critical.
Anthropology professors of a certain generation, like most classically trained academicians, do
not learn how to teach as part of their training. Teaching assistants also get uneven training in
how to teach anthropology. In graduate school, we learned our subject matter, often in great
detail, but there is a huge gap between the student who is taking an anthropology class for the
first time and faculty members who know their own dense subject matter, but do not know
how to pitch it to their audience, to engage them in anthropological subject matter and its
processes. I have found in my many years of teaching undergraduate students (mostly nonanthropology majors), that they learn anthropology best by doing it. A great many of the
articles in this newest edition are in-class activities in which students are actively engaged in
learning and implementing anthropological concepts.
This sixth edition continues the tradition of focusing on the how of teaching anthropology
across all of its sub-fields, with a wide array of learning outcomes and student activities. For
example, in Part I, the general section, the authors recommend tried and true strategies to engage
students in all sub-disciplines in learning about anthropology. These strategies are particularly
appropriate for students first exposure to anthropology and college classrooms in general. For
example, one exercise finely tunes students ability to observe, hear, smell, touch, and taste a
particular object, a skill that will carry on throughout the term. In addition, there are a lot of tips
about how to teach any anthropology course on-line, as well as how to use all or parts of
commercial films in class to promote in-depth discussion.
In Part II, Archaeology , we are shown how students can play the role of archaeologists when
they have to understand formation processes; how to evaluate and describe the functions of
artifacts; as well as understanding how complex societies have collapsed in the past.
In Part III, Bioanthropology, students learn both macro evolutionary and micro evolutionary
principles by playing genetic games in the classroom with M&Ms and coins; focusing on
human variation data collection and analysis; using Star Trek to explore human origin models
and human variation; using a zoo to observe primates quantitatively and qualitatively and
compare the two methods; and finally equipping students with the tools to do an anthropological
analysis of a crime scene.


Part IV on Cultural Anthropology, continues to have the largest number of teaching strategies,
ranging from students actively discovering what it is like to live in a stratified society, to
promoting the long term use of anthropological terms through essays to once again
understanding who the Nacirema are and how they live; to using Karaoke to teach and learn
about gender analysis, to using the TV show Friends to discuss incest and kinship categories and
to analyze different theoretical paradigms around the notions of relatives. The authors engage
students by recreating real life situations in the classroom based on popular culture as well as
traditional materials.
Several articles focus on research and methods of inquiry and discovery: one has students
looking at cultural evolution through an introduction to Guttmann Scaling; another uses statistics
to show how anthropologists can test certain hypotheses and even attempt to explain causations.
Technology plays a role when one exercise brings the use of Wikis into the classroom as a tool
for students to create their own new knowledge and catalog it. Several articles explore the realm
of symbolic culture: one through looking at the American immigrant experience and redesigning
the Statute of Liberty, and one shows students how to distinguish between myth and legend.
Once again, I wish to thank the editors, Patricia Rice, David McCurdy, and Scott Lukas for
bringing together still another talented group of colleagues to share their best practices with other
teachers, anthropologists, and non-anthropologists. It is dedicated authors like these that make it
possible for all of us to continue to provide our undergraduate students with the best experiences
possible in their discovery of the wonder of anthropology, the most multi-faceted discipline of
the 21st century.