Discover the past through evidence from an archaeological site in Alaska!
This book incorporates authentic archaeological and historical research paired with oral histories to teach students about the use and importance of the Ivrulik in the past and present lives of Iñupiaq people. In this investigation students will use Alaska geography, history, and archaeology to learn about a North Slope Ivrulik (a sod house) and the Iñupiaq people who lived in them. Examine an archaeological site near Barrow, Alaska. Your students will read an oral history from an Iñupiaq elder, analyze historic photographs, “uncover” a real archaeological site, and make a toggle harpoon!  Explore the use of traditional Iñupiaq architecture, and the benefits of using indigenous technology to solve problems today.

SKU: pa-ivrulik Categories: , ,



"I feel Project Archaeology curriculum is very rich and provides opportunities for real teaching. One of the things I like about Project Archaeology is the material is interesting and engaging. I am excited when I am teaching the lessons and the students are too." - 5th Grade Teacher, Craig, AK

Instructions for the Teacher
The teacher’s document is 29 pages, consisting of background information, and four sections corresponding to the student notebook. It includes archaeologists’ interpretations of the Ivrulik site and details about the artifacts found. Quadrant maps and artifact cards from the archaeological site are provided for the students to study and use.

Student Archaeology Notebook
The student notebook is 39 pages of data collection sheets about a North Slope Ivrulik. It contains all of the data sources and analytical tools the students will need to investigate an ivrulik from historical, archaeological, and cultural perspectives. Mr. George Leavitt, an Iñupiat elder, guides students through the investigation. Through archaeology students analyze historic photographs, discover artifacts left behind, make a toggle harpoon, and infer how the geography of the North Slope of Alaska shaped the ivrulik.


When you buy Investigating a North Slope Ivrulik you will also receive the essential companion products: Project Archaeology: Investigating Shelter and access to online introductory videos.

Project Archaeology: Investigating Shelter provides teachers and students with seven fundamental lessons on shelter and archaeology. With this pre-requisite, students are ready for Lesson Eight, an investigation of a shelter from the past, such as the Crow Plains Tipi. Finally, in Lesson Nine of Investigating Shelter students learn the enduring understanding that stewardship of archaeological sites and artifacts is everyone’s responsibility. Taught together, Investigating Shelter and Investigating a North Slope Ivrulik is a complete, comprehensive unit that truly allows for a deep understanding of shelter and archaeology. More information

Investigating Shelter videos are a professional development experience for educators in lieu of attending a Project Archaeology workshop. Watch Project Archaeology lessons in action! See a professional development workshop and a teacher guiding a 4th grade class through Investigating Shelter. Instructors model Understanding by Design and archaeological inquiry. Plus, see interviews with teachers and students! The videos are also available on our Teacher Page.

    1. Introduction – Why archaeology matters
    2. Investigating Shelter and Understanding by Design
    3. Lesson Two: By Our Houses You Will Know Us
    4. Lesson Four: Observation, Inference, and Evidence
    5. Lesson Six: Context Game
    6. Lesson Eight: Being an Archaeologist