Museums and the Web 2005
Demonstrations: Description
Photo Credits

See museum applications demonstrated by the people who created them.

Arctic Peoples and Archaeology CD-ROM

Collene Armstrong, Points North Design Services, Canada
Lynn Peplinski, Inuit Heritage Trust Inc., Canada

Demonstration: Demonstrations - Session 2

The Arctic Peoples and Archaeology CD-ROM is a unique product that was designed to summarize, in plain language, much of what is known (or surmised) about the societies that have populated Northern Canada.

The Inuit Heritage Trust initiated this complex project in 2001 and expects the CD-ROM, complete with Teachers' Guide, to be in Nunavut schools in 2004-5. The project is a result of painstaking collaboration between arctic archaeologists, Inuit Elders (who illustrated some sections, and provided their interpretations about artifacts and their voices), the Department of Education at the Nunavut Government and many others.

The CD-ROM in English, Inuktitut and French, though originally designed for grade eight social sciences students, will also be of value to any student of Arctic prehistory; museum guides/interpreters, university students and so on.

The CD-ROM begins with an introduction to the Arctic Environment, the climate, the land, the flora and the animals. Moving on, after setting the scene, the viewer is introduced to the peoples who lived and traveled in Nunavut beginning with the earliest societies, moving up through time until the historic Inuit, or Thule. Contemporary Inuit Elders provide their insights throughout the CD-ROM. Included in this section is a haunting interactive activity that requires decision-making on the part of the viewer to help a family decide where they should move their seasonal camp; the consequences of which are a matter of survival.

The third section of the CD presents the study and science of archaeology, and the current rules and regulations in Nunavut. There are short embedded movie clips of Inuit students participating in archaeology field schools and journal entries describing their learning.

Finally, in the fourth section, viewers are invited to participate in an archaeological dig of Brooman Point in the High Arctic where both Thule and Dorset people were known to have spent time. Archaeological evidence is introduced and viewers are expected to make a range of decisions based on their interpretations of this evidence.

The CD-ROM is a remarkable product, of value to all with an interest in arctic prehistory.