Europeana has launched its first Multi-Touch book and iTunes U course for use in classrooms, an important step forward in its goal to bring history to life for learners through the use of digital cultural collections in education.
The book and accompanying course, World War I: A battle of perspectives, were developed jointly with EUROCLIO and Gwen Vergouwen, an Apple Distinguished Educator (ADE) and Belgian history teacher as part of Apple’s ADEs in Residence programme, which pairs selected teachers with some of the world’s leading cultural organizations.
Available in both Dutch and English, the book and course introduce students and history enthusiasts to different interpretations of what caused the First World War. Together, the linked materials demonstrate the ways in which digital cultural content can engage students and support traditional learning.
Learners are encouraged to map their own path through diverse historical sources from Europeana 1914-1918’s collections and learning resources from EUROCLIO, and independently develop an understanding of events leading to the outbreak of war in 1914. Using Multi-Touch technology, they are able to analyse and explore a fascinating array of material, from postcards to propaganda, handwritten letters to satirical cartoons.
The education sector is a key market for Europeana, and the project with EUROCLIO and ADE Gwen Vergouwen is a groundbreaking achievement in this field. It successfully builds on Europeana’s commitment with experts, member state and EU policy-makers in a recent White Paper to open up digital cultural heritage for use in education and develop digital learning resources fit for the classroom using Europeana’s collections. With over 45 million records, Europeana has huge potential as a valued resource for learners at every stage of their education, and at pan-European level.
Jill Cousins, Executive Director, Europeana, said: “The WW1 Multi-Touch book and iTunes U course are a great example of digital cultural content being used in education, and as such, they support our efforts in this strategic market. The ADE programme provides an excellent framework connecting cultural heritage institutions and teachers and enabling them to share expertise, content and new technologies for the benefit of both educators and students. Looking ahead, we hope this will be the first of many similar projects for Europeana.”