Basic information

The fact that all the countries involved were on the eastern side of the “Iron Curtain” will allow the results obtained to be compared with each other, thus distinguishing what they all had in common from the specificities of each country. The project will include a wide range of activities focused on history, culture and media. Part of the historical research will be the creation of a timeline, mapping the main events in each country from the end of World War II to the fall of the communist regime, a more detailed overview of which will be part of a separate presentation. The knowledge gained in this way will not only bring the students closer to the important events of the contemporary history of their own country and others, but they will also form the background for other activities.

Getting to know the culture of a given period will primarily include the creation of an explanatory dictionary of typical terms in each language with an emphasis on expressions that are often incomprehensible to the younger generation. Students will get acquainted with the life at that time during a thematic day, when they will try out period clothes, see examples of period TV shows and experience the atmosphere of events such as the May Day parades. The intention is also to take advantage of the fact that all the participating ities are UNESCO sites - students will use historical photographs to compare their current status with the development of recent decades.

In the course of media studies, students will learn about the form of contemporary news and shoot their own news session situated in the time of the communist regime and subtitle the recording to the communication language of the project. This area also includes a questionnaire, which the students will create together and let the witnesses from their relatives and acquaintances answer. Students from each participating country will contribute to the questionnaire with questions about their country, which they would expect witnesses from other countries to know the answer. The results will then make it possible to assess the extent to which people in individual countries were aware of developments in other countries and to monitor the ways in which the propaganda was reflected in the awareness of citizens.

In creating a glossary of terms and a questionnaire, students will develop their communication skills and organizational skills, as success in these activities will require effective communication and cooperation of all participating countries. At the same time, individual generations will be connected during these activities. Getting to know the past through primary sources (witnesses' memories, contemporary news and photography) will be an important part of the project. In processing these resources, students will be forced to do their own historical research and interpretation, rather than simply drawing on the conclusions and results that have already been made. This will develop critical thinking and responsible working with information.

An indispensable goal of the project is also to raise students' awareness of the history of their country and others who shared a similar fate after World War II. The focus of interest in this area will be to understand the functioning of totalitarian regimes and their propaganda in such a way that students will acquire the ability to recognize propaganda and its manipulation and will appreciate the importance of a free and democratic society. One of the key elements of the project will be to acquire new skills when working with computer programs necessary for recording and capturing news, organizing a dictionary, preparing a questionnaire or organizing work on individual or joint project activities, both during their planning, knowledge transfer or sharing of the results.