European Heritage Days 25-27 September 2020 «Heritage and Education: Learning for life»

The Natural History Museum of the Lesvos Petrified Forest will participate in the European Heritage Days 2020 by implementing educational activities for its young friends.

Inspired by this year’s theme for the European Heritage Days“Heritage and Education: Learning for Life” – the Natural History Museum of the Lesvos Petrified Forest designed the educational activities “Young Explorers: Let’s discover our Natural Heritage” and “Shadow Puppet Theatre starring the animals of the Lesvos Petrified Forest”, that will take place at its premises in Sigri, on Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th September at 10:30 p.m.

The educational activity “Young Explorers: Let’s discover our Natural Heritage” is inspired by the important place that once had the school learning excursions in nature, during which the students had the chance to discover their natural environment, observe the local flora and fauna and then search information about what caught their curiosity. The lesson was often transferred to outdoor areas and the students were in constant contact with nature. The museum’s young friends will have the opportunity to live an experience like this on Saturday 26th September by exploring the island’s natural environment in the museum’s outdoor spaces and in Sigri Petrified Forest Park. The young explorers will create their own binoculars and nature diaries, where they will record all their observations, draw details of the natural landscape and collect plant specimens. At the end, they will share their observations and discuss the present-day natural environment of the island, comparing it to the environment that prevailed 20,000,000 years ago and coming to conclusions about the climate changes that shaped the island’s landscape.

On Sunday 27th September the educational activity Shadow Puppet Theatre starring the animals of the Lesvos Petrified Forest will take place. For years, shadow theatre has been a form of entertainment for children with many pedagogical parameters, combining play with learning and cultivating the imagination and creativity of young children. In this educational activity the children will create their own shadow theatre with the animals of the Petrified Forest. After constructing the stage and the puppets-paper figurines, they will let their imagination free, travel 20 million years ago and try to recreate the animal life in the subtropical forest that existed in the area, as well as the history of the creation of the Lesvos Petrified Forest.

The theme for this year’s European Heritage Days celebration, “Heritage and Education: Learning for Life“, focuses on the role of education in understanding and promoting our common European heritage, but also on the contribution of heritage to education. From the beginning, education has been a core part of the European Heritage Days initiative and it is woven through all its activities and events that take place across Europe each year. This year, the aim is to explore and expand the potential of heritage as a tool for learning, as well as inspiration for the future. Furthermore, the heritage and history of Education itself open a window to our common European heritage and past, to knowledge and traditions that have been inherited from previous generations. By studying and reviving past educational practices, we discover ways to gain knowledge about the local environment and the local fauna and flora, but also to understand local problems that need local solutions. For #EuropeanHeritageDays 2020 we seek to find a reconnection to the knowledge, skills and traditions of the past, and in so doing reimagine what education could mean for the 21st century.