On Febraruy 14th & 15th of 2017, a group of researchers from the Integrated Systems Laboratory (ISL) of NCSR “Demokritos” completed the first pilot of iGuide Knossos in the scholastic environment, aiming to incorporate the digital application into the educational process. Third grade students of Greek-German Educational Schools (Ellinogermaniki Agogi), located in Pallini (Attiki), made use of the new application and technology within the context of their history lesson. iGuide Knossos provided tools with which to deepen and enliven the traditional curriculum, through interactive audiovisual elements and hands-on activities.
Over the course of two days, 180 students used iGuide Knossos to become “virtual visitors” in a digitally reconstructed hypothetical Knossos. Hypothetical, as we ask ourselves what Knossos may have looked like if its reconstitution had continued, based on the work of Arthur Evans and research of many archaeologists and scholars after him. With high definition 3D graphics, animation shorts, interactive points, 3D sound, audio guided narrations and text, iGuide Knossos aims to broaden our imagination around the questions surrounding Knossos today, by animating findings of the excavation of British archaeologist Arthur Evans and his team. iGuide Knossos also features questions about the controversial and highly discussed reconstitution as posed by generations of archaeologists and researchers working today.
The “virtual visitors” had the opportunity to navigate in first person through this “hypothetical Knossos”, learning about the difference between history and mythology, the role of the researcher and questions regarding art and architecture, as well as hypotheses regarding religion and everyday life of the Minoans.
The feedback and impressions of students and teachers on this experimental activity as reflected in questionnaires, are of great interest:
“I was impressed on how realistic everything looked!” She wrote a student in her impressions,
while the educator of the Hellenic Ministry stressed that
“The program was very interesting and helped the students visualize many of the concepts taught, especially with regards to the Knossos architecture”
Of course, we cannot know with certainty what Knossos actually looked like in the past, nor what the reconstitution may have looked like if it had continued. However, we can see how digital technology can provide tools to visualize the multiplicity of archaeological interpretations, triggering lively discussions around the roles of archaeological sites today, inviting students, no matter how young, into this debate.
Maria Bessa, Panagiotis Tsimpiridis
Ino Theodorou, Christina Thomopoulou, Christos Maroglou, Maria Bessa, Giorgos Farazis
Video shooting :
Vana Alexopoulou, Eleonora Doukoudaki
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