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About The Program

What is it?

  • An educational program based on anthropological and biological research designed for students and adults of all ages.
  • A program that educates visitors about the origin of humans on earth and the importance and significance of both biological and cultural diversity.
  • A program based on current scientific knowledge.
  • For educators, it provides the science base for inclusion and integrative lessons.
  • For students it provides an opportunity to handle fossil casts and to interact with university faculty, graduate and undergraduate students.

How does it work?

  • The CHOCD program operates two learning laboratories: The Human Origin Lab (HOC) and the African Cultures Lab (ACL).
  • In the labs, visitors have hands-on involvement with fossil casts and artifacts.
  • Visitors work in small groups and have the opportunity to dialogue with staff.
  • Visitors go through a series of learning stations. Each station experience lasts approximately 30 minutes and groups are rotated throughout an entire lab program.

Who has come to the labs?

  • To date, over 12,000 visitors have come through the labs.
  • We have hosted 3rd through 12th grade students, collegiate students, OASIS, Academy of Science and other adult groups. 
  • This population includes ESL students, youth enrolled in alternative education, incarcerated youth, deaf and hard of hearing, and learning and behaviorally disabled students.

Who runs the program?

  • Operated by the Academic Affairs.
  • It was designed and is implemented by faculty, graduate and undergraduate students from both the College of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences.

With what other programs is CHOCD involved?

  • Ferguson Florissant 21st Century Out-of-School Program for 4-6th grades (After school and Summer programs 2001- 2010, 2011-2013)
  • St. Louis Arts Works High school video program (2013)
  • Ferguson Youth Initiative, youth service program (2011-present)
  • College of Education pre-service and graduate teacher education (2000 -2013)
  • Heart of our Community (Wellston and Normandy) middle school, (Summer and after school programs 2000, 2001).
  • CBHE Eisenhower Professional Development Programs for teachers (Summer 1997, 1999, 2000 and 2001).
  • IN-Gear for Careers teacher enrichment programs for teachers and middle school students (St. Louis Public, Wellston, Normandy, Maplewood/Richmond Heights).
  • High School Science Lessons: Anthropological Human Forensics and Earth Science (Normandy).
  • Middle School Summer Science Camps (Normandy NSF Summer 1998,1999).

What's planned for the future?

  • "The Story in Your Genes" a new genetics-based digital game station for middle and high school students.
  • Computer based activities in the Human Origin Lab Program. 
  • Curriculum materials and lesson plans on the CHOCD website.
  • Research seminars for faculty and classroom teachers.
  • Collaborative ventures with the Missouri Arts Council, St. Louis Art Works, Ferguson Youth Initiative the St. Louis Science Center and the Missouri Historical Society.