Kick-off meeting “History that connects the Balkans. Rethinking History Education?”

From 2nd to 5th of April 2015 the first Kick-off meeting in the EuroClio project “History that connects the Balkans. Rethinking History Education? 21st Century Approaches” took place in Skopje, Macedonia. Members of History Teachers Associations from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia were invited to participate in order to discuss organizational issues with the development of regional website and with preparations for the summer school in Mrkonjić Grad. EuroClio was represented by Jonathan Even-Zohar (director), Judith Geerling (project manager) and by Ivan Markovic (trainee). Organizer of this meeting was Macedonian History Teachers Association headed by its president and EuroClio board member, Mire Mladenovski.

During the meeting two successful workshops were organised. The topic of the first workshop was the programme of the upcoming summer school. After a fruitful discussion, it was agreed that summer school will be heavily focused on topics such as cultural history, remembrance and glocal history (global and local history). In addition to this, there will be several on-site learning activities such as visits to archaeological sites, museums, former concentration camps and memorial sites. Following day, another productive workshop was held. The workshop topic was the development of a regional website for history, citizenship and cultural heritage education. Following a series of discussion participants presented the initial concept of the website and agreed to further discuss via Skype challenges such as language.

Overall, the meeting in Skopje was successful in reaching its aims, as well as it provided the capacity to continue with the presented projects. The participants know that there is still work to do and they will work actively in the coming period to overcome necessary challenges before the summer school in Mrkonjić Grad.

Learn so you can be understood – a video on the state of educational system in the Balkan region

The Joint History Project – an initiative of the Centre for Democracy and Reconciliation in South East Europe, has made this well informed short documentary entitled Uči da bi te razumjeli (‘Learn so you can be understood’) where international experts at the region analyze the current situation in the schools and the needs that has to be faced in the near future. Moreover the video counts with the participation of many partners and members of EuroClio in the region, including Director Jonathan Ever-Zohar.

A great resource to learn about the current state of the educational System in the Balkan region as well as to know CDRSEE programme Joint History Project.

To see the video click here.

“Once Upon A Time…We Lived Together” Language Editions Available

The latest EuroClio collaborative educational publication “Once Upon A Time … We Lived Together: Joint Work in a Multiperspective Approach” is now available in 8 languages, for free in full, downloadable PDF Book format.

‘Once Upon A Time … We Lived Together’ was publically launched by Chief Editor Bojana Dujkovic-Blagojevic at the 21st EuroClio Annual Conference in Ohrid, Macedonia, and is the main outcome of the History that Connects project ‘How to Teach Sensitive and Controversial History in the Countries of Former Yugoslavia’ (2011-2014). It contains 23 innovative exemplar workshops focusing on some of the most sensitive and controversial topics of regional history between 1900-1945, with contributions from educators of all seven project countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia).

Over 500 History Educators Trained with New Resource “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together”

In the period between July and mid-October, over 500 History Educators from all countries of former Yugoslavia were able to participate in Public Launch and Teacher Training Seminars organised in Mavrovo (4-5 July, Macedonia), Prizren (12-14 September, Kosovo), Ljubljana (17 September, Slovenia), Zagreb (18-19 September, Croatia), Belgrade (25-26 September, Serbia), Podgorica (6-7 October, Montenegro) and Sarajevo (12-14 October). At every event EuroClio Director Jonathan Even-Zohar together with the Country Coordinators and the Country Editor presented the new Resource Book “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together” in the different language editions – following small technical edits, all these versions will be made available online in the coming month.

The seminars all had strong regional dimensions with Trainers coming from other countries, and the remainder of the time together was spent to do active training on using the material. A full report of all events will be availble in one month time. Lot’s of input and pictures have already been shared on the EuroClio Facebook Group.

EuroClio Has a Say on Cultural Heritage Rehabilitation in South-East Europe

A EuroClio delegation took part in the High-level Regional Conference Cultural Heritage Rehabilitation as a Key to Sustainable Development, held on 27-28 October 2014 in Dubrovnik, Croatia. The event was organised by the Regional Cooperation Council Task Force on Culture and Society which promotes cooperation between the countries of South-East Europe with the support of the European Commission.

Members of the Croatian History Teachers Association Denis Detling and Kiti Jurica-Kodra – and of the History Teachers Association of Montenegro HIPMONT Milos Vukanovic together with EuroClio Senior Manager Blandine Smilansky met with representatives of Ministries of Culture from the region as well as various institutions and organisations dealing with cultural heritage in the SEE. The aim of the Conference was to present the achievements of the project Ljubljana Process II – Rehabilitating our Common Heritage, and pave the way for future cooperation and endeavors in this field.

At the Conference EuroClio had the opportunity to present its mission and work related to cultural heritage, and advocated for an increased recognition of the contribution of high-quality history, heritage and citizenship education to a development-driven approach to cultural heritage rehabilitation through innovative and responsible on-site learning.

History Educators in the Western Balkans Participate in New Training with “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together. 1900-1945”

The series of seminars organised at national level by EuroClio and its member Associations in the Western Balkans in September and October are the platform for the launch of EuroClio’s new multilingual teaching tool entitled ‘Once Upon A Time … We Lived Together’. Attended each by 50 to 100 participants on average, the seminars are a unique opportunity for history educators in the region to discover exemplar material for the history classroom. An almost Live Report of the series of Training can be seen on the EuroClio Facebook Group or for example the report on the Croatian National History Portal.

This publication is the main outcome of the History that Connects project ‘How to Teach Sensitive and Controversial History in the countries of former Yugoslavia?‘ (2011-2014), which was officially introduced at the 21st EuroClio Annual Conference in Ohrid. It contains 23 innovative exemplar workshops focusing on some of the most sensitive and controversial topics of regional history between 1900-1945, with contributions from educators of all seven project countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia).

Between 11 September and 5 October, 6 national launch and training seminars will take place in the project countries. In particular, Kosovo (Prizren: 12-14 September), Slovenia (Ljubljana: 19 September), Croatia (Zagreb: 20-21 September), Montenegro (Podgorica: 3-5 October), Bosnia and Herzegovina (Sarajevo: 10-12 October).

The programme and reports of the training seminar can be shared upon a request. Contact for queries.

EuroClio Publication Addressed by German World Service DW

EuroClio history publication Once Upon A Time … We Lived Together is described as a good step to encouraging students to think about multi-perspective stories and reflect on differences between representations throughout history, according to DW report on “South Eastern Europe: The First World War in Textbooks”. It will enable education to “try to bring into balance the various interpretations in order to arrive at a common European history.”

The report discusses the questions students are faced with when the first world war in South Eastern Europe: Was the assassin of Sarajevo a hero or a terrorist? What are the reasons for the outbreak of the First World War? And notes that students in Southeast European countries get different answers in their textbooks. For example, in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the textbooks are divided along ethnic lines: There’s own history of Serbian, Croatian and Muslim Bosnians. Thus is where EUROLCIO’s publication illustrating the events in the former Yugoslavia from the period 1912-1945 from different angles is useful. “There is an attempt to shed light on the assassination of Franz Ferdinand with various sources.”

Read the full article here.

Successful Launch of Macedonian Language Version “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together”

On 3-5 July 2014, in Mavrovo, Republic of Macedonia, nearly 70 History Educators from all over the country and from different backgrounds came together for the launch and teacher training seminar within the EuroClio Project “History that Connects”. Over the two days, participants engaged with the material through active workshops provided by local and regional trainers, including the Project Editors Bojana Dujkovic-Blagojevic, Milos Vukanovic and Mire Mladenovski, as well as one of the module author Iljo Trajkovski. In addition, an active group discussion was held on the future plans for the Association of History Educators in Macedonia, including Study Visits abroad, national projects and new themes to develop. A full report will be made available after the summer. The Macedonian-language version of the book “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together” can be requested free of charge via e-mail (due to filesize). Unfortunately it was not possible to finalise the Albanian-language version on time for the event. This is expected before September.

Teacher Training Seminars on New EuroClio Publication “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together”

Following the succesfull launch of the English Language version of the collaboratively produced Teacher Resource Book “Once Upon a Time…We Lived Together” in Ohrid, Republic of Macedonia, the plans are finalised for National Teacher Training Seminars in the local languages. In July the first of such events took place in Mavrovo, Macedonia. These seminars include open discussion on implementation of the new material as well as active workshops on different modules of the book. The seminars will be held between 23 August and 12 October and are organised by EuroClio together with the Member Associations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia. If you are interested to attend or learn more about these events, please contact Jonathan Even-Zohar.

New Free Teaching Resource by EuroClio, English Language Version Available

On 3rd April 2014, during the EuroClio Annual Conference in Ohrid, Chief-Editor Bojana Dujkovic-Blagojevic had the pleasure to publicly launch the first English-language edition of the teaching resource “Once upon a time…We Lived Together. Joint work in a multiperspective approach. 23 Workshops on 1900-1945”. The language editions are now receiving their final edit in Albanian, Bosnian, Croatian, Macedonian, Montenegrin, Serbian and Slovenian, and those will be distributed to history teachers associations during national teacher training events in August-October period. The book can be freely downloaded from this location.