“Brevity is the soul of wit” is a famous phrase from Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”. Paraphrasing it as “Brevity is the soul of tweet (but what happened to the wit?)”, we emphasize the brevity of today’s information and the lack of interest for deeper learning and understanding, as a result of the accumulation of information in our everyday life.
Aims of the scenario
This learning scenario is used in the subject of Information Technology in Primary Education, with students aged 11-12. It aims at building digital literacy and focuses on aspects of ICT as a social phenomenon. As students have become “addicted” to short messages and have lost the desire to delve deeper into a topic, one of the basic aims of the lesson is to re-introduce students to the “endangered” skill of reading and understanding bigger texts online. It also aims at introducing alternative sources of information other than the commonly used search engines.
Procedure – Europeana in the spotlight
Students navigate in the Europeana Collections and choose the collection that interests them the most. They have to delve into the theme of their choice, creating mind maps and taking notes. Afterwards, they have to create a digital newsletter for the topic they have chosen and enrich it with multimedia and information from Europeana Collections which must be their only source of material. The newsletters created are being published on the school’s blog, one each month.
Skills practiced and learning outcomes
The students focused on assessing and collecting information from an alternative source (Europeana) other than the commonly used search engines. They also had to think critically as digital citizens, summarize a text and distinguish its most important or interesting parts. Finally, they created and shared digital content bearing the responsibility for its quality.
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