Conference Agenda

C36: Workshop: Geschichtomat - How to teach Jewish history with digital aid
Wednesday, 08/July/2020:
2:00pm - 2:45pm

Session Chair: Carmen Bisotti
Location: C - Sessions


Geschichtomat - How to teach Jewish history with digital aid

Carmen Bisotti

Institut für die Geschichte der deutschen Juden, Deutschland

How can history be taught in a modern and everyday-life like way? The student-driven project Geschichtomat which is located in Hamburg, Germany tries to find an answer to this question by using digital aid. The one-of-a-kind program permits students to experience the Jewish past and present life in their hometown. The use of digital technologies plays an important role: Geschichtomat includes a website with a digital map which is being filled and shaped by participating teenagers.

During the project, students explore their neighborhood to understand its historical figures, places, and events. This way they engage with Jewish life. Under the supervision of experts in the disciplines of history and media education the students will: research, perform interviews with cultural authorities and contemporary witnesses, visit museums and archives, shoot and cut films. Finally, their contributions are uploaded to the website. Little by little a digital map of Jewish life from the perspective of teenagers will take shape.

In February 2013, “Geschichtomat” was implemented for the first time. Since then it has been repeated more than fourty times contributing to over 800 student participations and the production of more than 200 short films. Students learned about the lives of persecuted Jews, interviewed contemporary witnesses, and dealt with the “Kindertransporte” or the book burning of 1933. They visited Jewish cemeteries and tasted kosher gummi bears.