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Indigenous Heritage: Teaching and Learning Didactics Experience in Valverde and Montecristi (Dominican Republic), August 2015

This August, the ERC-Synergy NEXUS 1492 Project and the “Museo Arqueológico Regional Altos de Chavón” have come together again to provide the school community of Valverde (13th and 14th) and Montecristi (19th and 20th) with the opportunity to participate in workshops on archaeological indigenous heritage, teaching and learning strategies for teachers of primary and secondary school levels.

The Workshop

The workshop was organized with the purpose to provide school teachers with didactic knowledge on the use of archaeological evidence to teach about the values of the heritage left by the first indigenous people, settlers of La Hispaniola. The teachers were provided with practical examples to be applied in their classes. Also, the teachers found a space in the workshop to discuss and share their thoughts on their own educational practices and to explore opportunities through archaeology as a scientific discipline that can lead to design “hands-on” and cross-disciplinary educational experiences.

The activities were designed using the learning goals of the ERC-Synergy NEXUS 1492 as guidelines:

1) To contribute in rewriting a chapter of Caribbean History before the European Encounters in 1492, by providing scientific knowledge about the indigenous inhabitants, their cultures, and transformations across the time.

2) To revitalize the heritage of the indigenous peoples in pre-Columbian times through Caribbean history using archaeological evidence.

3) Promote the conservation, preservation and value of cultural indigenous heritage in contemporary Caribbean society.

In addition, the “Valija Didáctica” of the Museo Arqueológico Regional Altos de Chavón was included to provide teachers with tools to explore the opportunities that non-formal educational institutions can offer to formal education settings to extend practical teaching-learning strategies in classrooms.

It is our purpose to strengthen and deepen our ties with the educational community as part of the research activities and initiatives of the ERC-NEXUS 1492 set upon a solid base of collaboration with local institutions, as was possible on this occasion thanks to the support of the Ministry of Education of the Dominican Republic, through the School Districts of Esperanza and Montecristi, and the Museo Arqueológico Regional Altos de Chavón.

By Eldris Con Aguilar

Thanks also to Emma Slayton, Eloise Stancioff and Habiba for their contribution in the design of didactic resources for these workshops.

For more information please contact Eldris Con Aguilar or Arlene Álvarez.

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