The European Union and UNESCO team up for new project

On the occasion of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, the European Union and UNESCO have developed a new project to strengthen the connections between youth, heritage and education. The project has 2 main components: the first one aims to bring intangible cultural heritage into the classroom, while the second one seeks to empower a new generation of heritage professionals through organising a Young Heritage Experts Forum.
Children playing in Textiles Zentrum Haslach

This project places emphasis on the contribution of heritage to empowering children and youth, and on promoting an inclusive and sustainable future for Europe. It contributes to 2 of the 10 European initiatives, which seek to ensure a lasting impact of the year: Initiative 2: Heritage at School and Initiative 3: Youth for Heritage.

Learning about and through intangible cultural heritage at schools

With the support of the UNESCO Associated Schools Project Network, composed of about 2000 schools, teachers across Europe will pilot new initiatives to bring intangible cultural heritage closer to Europe's younger generations. This part of the project will first map existing good practices and detect possible gaps in integrating intangible heritage in education, by means of a survey and an online brochure. In a second phase, a set of guidance materials will be developed in order to support teachers in integrating intangible cultural heritage in school curricula and extracurricular activities. Finally, UNESCO will organise training workshops for a group of selected schools, aimed at integrating intangible cultural heritage in core subjects of educational curricula. Activities can include, for example, the use of traditional bells to explain the expansion of soundwaves in physics, or the use of traditional sauerkraut preparation (fermented white cabbage traditionally produced in Central Europe) to demonstrate the scientific process of fermentation.

EU/UNESCO Young Heritage Experts Forum

UNESCO will organise a Young Heritage Experts Forum in Zadar, Croatia, for heritage experts between 25 and 32 years from the European Union's Member States. The forum will feature hands-on activities that provide skills on heritage conservation, preservation and promotion, as well as workshops and group discussions, site visits, and presentations by the participants on heritage related issues and on the initiatives and projects that they intend to implement in their countries. One of the aims of the meeting is that the participants will be empowered to become and remain advocates for cultural heritage and sustainability in their home countries.

The project's activities are expected to start in January 2019, and will run for 15 months.

You can find earlier educational tools for cultural heritage among the resources of the year, such as the eTwinning book, the Teacher's Toolkit, and the Cultural Heritage Detectives game.

Photo: © 2014 by Textiles Zentrum Haslach, with the permission of UNESCO