World War I on Historiana, get involved

In the March Newsletter it was announced that Historiana will be participating in a new project, Europeana Creative. Our involvement is with the pilot project on history education where we are working with our web design partner, Webtic, to develop a range of e-learning activities which will make use of some of the historical sources that can be found on the Europeana database. The development work has now begun and we will be hoping to involve some of you in piloting these activities with your students in the early autumn.

It is intended that these learning activities will be transferable so that we could employ them on Historiana with a wide variety of historical events and developments. However, clearly we cannot develop them in a vacuum so we have decided that in the first phase of the project we will focus on development of interactive learning activities within the context of World War I.

This was an obvious choice for Historiana. First, it is a topic covered in most school history curricula in Europe and, therefore, a development priority for us. Second, there is a lot of source material relating to the war on the Europeana database. This includes many hours of newsreel coverage, photographs, propaganda posters, postcards and letters sent home by members of the armed forces, military dispatches, newspaper coverage, and so on.

Work has also begun on developing a module on World War I to support these activities, including an animated time map, a timeline of key events and evidence-based information on the causes and consequences of the war. One of our main aims here is to provide history educators and their students with multiple perspectives on the war: not just different national perspectives (although that will be important) but also material reflecting the different perspectives and experiences of the soldiers at each front; the different ways newspapers covered the war and how the news was received on the home fronts; how the war was perceived in non-combatant countries; and how governments reacted to events and developments during the war.

To do this we need your help. If you would like to contribute source material relating to any of these perspectives, please contact Steven Stegers at: steven@euroclio.eu