The authors of the three activities chose these films as starting points with the following educational goals in mind:
Make the three topics depicted in the videos relevant to broader concepts covered in national curricula. This applies to both the content and the development of historical thinking.
Each time students take on an activity, they will be asked to concentrate on people, their lives, feelings, emotions, hardships, and dilemmas. This approach enables students to exercise historical empathy in the context of the topics under discussion.
Promote historical critical thinking among high school students and teachers by developing new interactive learning activities based largely on audiovisual archival content from the EUscreen and Europeana collections. The films were made and partially edited by the young participants of the study trips. That allows young people not only to build on the previous work, but also to engage more in the “student style” narrative, and, finally, to take a critical approach to the content and production methods.
Develop media literacy, especially by encouraging students to make their own multimedia materials such as animated movies, voice recordings, time-lapse photography, short films, etc. In each activity students are asked to “produce” something and present it at the end of the exercise. To make this task easier, a wide range of maps and other visual materials have been made available. There are also short narratives written in simple English (Information Packages) that provide the necessary contextual knowledge for each of the films and their stories. To make the context even clearer, a short glossary of selected terms has been included.
The activities described are meant to be inspirations. It is hard to predict how much time and how many students a teacher has, or what approach he or she will adopt in these exercises. Therefore we strongly recommend making all necessary adjustments to adapt our ideas to the individual classroom environment and setting. Some alternative scenarios have been suggested to show that there are many ways to achieve the goals of the activities.