2 minutes to read Posted on Thursday April 7, 2022

Updated on Thursday April 7, 2022

portrait of Rafael Montero

Rafael Montero

STEM Teacher , Corazón de María School

portrait of Georgia Evans

Georgia Evans

Editorial Officer , Europeana Foundation

Built with Bits – an educational challenge: the Spain winner

Europeana’s ‘Built with Bits’ programme invited students and educators to combine collaborative learning experiences and digital technologies with the values of accessibility, inclusivity and sustainability at the heart of the New European Bauhaus movement. We speak to Rafael Montero from Colegio Corazón de María (CODEMA), who won the programme's 'Spain' category, about his experience and the value of using digital cultural heritage and immersive technologies in education. 

Inside the Mozilla hub designed by CODEMA students
Title:
Inside the Mozilla hub designed by CODEMA students
Creator:
Rafael Montero
Date:
2021

Congratulations on your success in Built with Bits! Can you tell us about your institution? 

CODEMA is a school located in Gijón in the north of Spain, with more than 1,500 students and 100 teachers. We are one of the biggest schools in our region. CODEMA is a bilingual school specialised in several methodological approaches (active methodologies, collaborative learning, future classroom) and very active in all things European (including Erasmus, eTwinning and EU level projects).  

Why did you apply to take part in Built with Bits? 

We strive to offer our students multiple opportunities for growth, not only academically but also at the personal level. We believe that through their participation in Built with Bits we have fostered their desire to learn, to investigate and to act and their appreciation of the rich history of our school.  

Tell us about your winning entry! 

'CODEMA: A century and beyond' is a project that celebrates the history of our school, Corazón de María, which was founded 80 years ago by Claretian Priests. The project consists of media (photographs and interviews) created by our students that are displayed in 3D models of our school building and assembly hall. All were from 16-year-old students who interviewed key figures of our school's history, digitalised media and created 3D models. This project shows the strong commitment of our school towards learning by doing as the outcomes are the products of our students’ work. 

CODEMA students working on the Built with Bits project in a classroom
Title:
CODEMA students working on the Built with Bits project
Creator:
Rafael Montero.
Date:
2021
CODEMA students working on the Built with Bits project in a classroom

What do you think is the value of using digital cultural heritage and immersive technologies in education?   

Digital cultural heritage plays a significant role in contextualising the content we, teachers, are delivering to our students. It is also key to engaging the students in the learning process as it provides anchors the student can grasp, so they can better relate to the knowledge they are acquiring. 

How did the programme deepen your understanding of the New European Bauhaus? 

Built with Bits gave us the opportunity to reimagine our school, highlighting what we find is its most beautiful asset: the people. The program allowed us to reflect on our dream school but it also made clear that this future school has to be proud of its heritage and its past achievements and that we want this to be digitally available for future generations of students.  

Given that 2022 is the European Year of Youth, have you considered other ways to engage students and young people with your winning project? 

The project has two phases. As detailed above, in the first one, the 16-year-old students of Scientific Culture created a digital representation of our school and our assembly hall in order to display all the media they created. In the second phase, which has just begun, the Modern History Teachers will build upon the phase one work to populate it with additional material created in their lessons so that all in all the over 100 students of Grade 11 from our school will participate in the project. 

Digital representation of the school assembly hall
Title:
Digital representation of the school assembly hall
Creator:
Rafael Montero
Date:
2021
Digital representation of the school assembly hall

We would love to hear from your students directly - what was the most valuable thing that they learned from the programme? 

CODEMA student Álvaro Puebla says, 'In my opinion, this project has opened to many people, both students and teachers, a new vision of the digital world or metaverse. In the project we have learned to create from scratch what is currently being done on a large scale by large companies, and we have also learned to work with other partners as it was group work.' 

CODEMA student Nicolás Oviaño says, 'This project has demonstrated the many things we can achieve when we work together, I believe this is what truly represents this project: cooperative work.' 

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