Ötzi the Iceman Field Trips

We offer stand-alone guided tours, and packages that include a tour with additional hands-on, Ötzi-inspired labs. These multidisciplinary activities are appropriate for a variety of classes, including: social studies, anthropology, biology, life science, and forensics.

For information for a middle school (grades 5-8) tour package, visit Middle School Program.

For information for a high school (grades 9 and above) tour package, visit High School Field Trips.

Our Human Inheritance, featuring Ötzi the Iceman

Tour the museum exhibition on human evolution, including the first-ever Neanderthal skeleton reproduction and an exact replica of a 5,300 year-old man found frozen in the Ötztal Alps in 1991–Ötzi the Iceman. Hear Ötzi’s story and find out what we have learned about Neolithic times by studying his body, clothing and equipment.

  • Lab time: 1 hour
  • Grades 5 and above
  • Offered only at CSH DNALC location

DNA Extraction from Wheat Germ

DNA evidence has confirmed the presence of wheat in Ötzi’s digestive tract. Use a simple procedure to isolate DNA from wheat germ and learn more about the development of agriculture and domestication of wheat during the Neolithic Period.

  • Lab time: 1 hour
  • Grades 5, 6, 7, & 8

Pollen Tells a Story

Analysis of the contents of Ötzi’s intestinal tract revealed background pollen that was used to place his whereabouts over the last 36 hours of his life. Using compound microscopes, combine pollen identification with digestive timing to deduce where he may have been prior to his untimely demise.

  • Lab time: 1 hour
  • Grades 5, 6, 7, & 8

Human Family Tree

Tour the Our Human Inheritance exhibit, then go to the lab and explore the fossil record to investigate the evolutionary relationships among early human ancestors. Using skull casts, students examine a series of traits to determine whether each is phenotypically archaic or modern. Phylogenetic trees are built using compiled class results.

  • Middle School: Grades 6–8
  • Lab time: 2 hours
  • High School: Grades 9 and above
  • Lab time: 3 hours
  • Offered only at CSH DNALC location