When Students Rewrite History
A Twistory Project for Schools, Museums, and Archives
Keywords:Twistory, Social Media, Museum, Archive, Academic Writing, Website, Collaborative Projects
Twistory (twitter + history) projects encourage creativity and critical thinking by allowing students to research topics they are interested in and turning them into digital timelines. This article describes a twistory project that was created as a collaborative project between a Swiss public secondary school, a museum, and an archive. The project tries to make history come alive for students by turning them into historians, allowing them to research museum objects or archival documents and writing historical narratives about them. Their findings are uploaded in chronological order onto social media with corresponding blogs on the school’s website, resulting in a digital timeline that consists of historical narratives of museum objects and archival records written by students. The article explains how the project works; how the collaboration between the school, museum, and archive developed; and how each institution benefits from such a project. Twistory projects are exciting new ways for museums to engage with students and participate in digitized culture. They also turn students into storytellers and history detectives. They learn how museums and archives work and how to deal with primary sources, do research, write academic papers, and present their work to a public audience. Furthermore, students realize that “history” is not a definitive story that has already been written but that there is an infinite number of fascinating “histories”—depending on the sources considered and the questions asked.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Ariane Knuesel
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