History is a field that gives the teachers enough space to prove themselves. A journey through the ages – from the ancient ones through dark medieval era and colorful baroque to the newest events – it is a great opportunity to organize fantastic and emotional classes. Although, they don’t always have to take the classical form. Here comes a few ideas that might encourage students to deepen their knowledge about past and fill the loops in historical education at any stage.
Going on the movies
The power of cinemas and television is well-known to everybody. The sign of it is popularity of such hits like “The Hunger Games” or Marvel Cinematic Universe. Given this, there is nothing in the way to use the cinematography in teaching history. The key is the choice of a movie. Not all the pictures shown as historical genre will be worth a while. What kind of movies are we looking for then? At best – the ones made by the specialists in the historical field and those where executive producer are well-known historian.
School trips are usually organized to visit important places from Poland perspective – such as Malbork or Biskupin. Apart from those there are also modern scientific centers enriched with imaginative interactive attractions. For example, when going to Cracow, aside of Wawel or Old Town Market it’s worth to include brand new interactive center of discovering the history of Poles and Poland called HistoryLand. It is filled with model showing buildings and events from Polish history made of more than a million LEGO® bricks. Among others, one can find the defense of Jasna Góra, battle of Grunwald, known by students not only from school books but also bestsellers like “Potop” or “Krzyżacy”. Additional audiovisual variations that affect all the senses make a visitor feeling like a participant of on-going events. It makes the guests understand the history better.
The method is most often used during the language classes. It doesn’t mean that it can’t be applied in the history class. But firstly – what is intersemiotic translation? The method is nothing else than translation – or attempt of translation – of one language into another system of signs and gestures. For example: a piece of a novel can be turned into an image, a scene or even a melody. How to use it when it comes to history? At best – by analyzing the source material like laws or letters of known politics. Dismantling historical events to the very basics pieces can help to understand the core, and interpreting with use of artistic methods or gestures can improve memorizing of a text.