An Exhibition about WW1 with Europeana 14-18 (LS-FR-295)

Students love to work with authentic documents. History seems to become real. In this learning scenario, they study letters, diaries, postcards, poems from Europeana 14-18 “stories” in order to prepare an exhibition about WW1. They have to read, transcribe, choose abstracts of the documents to treat their subject and demonstrate that the WW1 is a global war that involves soldiers as well as civilians, children and grownups and exposes them to violence. 

A ”transcribathon run” has also been organized with volunteers on the Transcribathon platform

Europeana 14-18 stories

This learning scenario also aims to improve the methodology of collaborative work. In the first part, the students become experts in their “story”, and in the second part, the groups are mixed and every expert shares his knowledge and skills with others to develop one aspect of the exhibition. During the whole process, each student has to give ideas, details, to discuss the different choices. 

The best moment for me as a teacher is the last part of this learning scenario. The students have to visit the whole exhibition and prepare some questions to ask their classmates. Each group must defend and explain their choices, answer to questions about documents and texts. The students show their interest and their misunderstandings, the errors become obvious and can be explained by the teacher but also often by the other students. 

I used padlet as a tool for the exhibition, but this lesson could be enhanced with a better digital tool highlighting texts and documents.

Screenshot of the exhibition showing a letter from Anna Chabaud (1916), a postcard from Juliette Grapton (1916) and Ernest Coudray’s copy book.

Would you like to know more about this learning scenario? You can download it below:

New: this learning scenario is now available in French. Interested? Download it below:

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CC BY-SA 3.0: the featured image used to illustrate this article has been found on Europeana Collections, in the Europeana 1914-1918 collection.

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