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2 minutes to read Posted on Thursday January 25, 2018

Updated on Monday November 6, 2023

portrait of Annapaula Freire de Oliveira

Annapaula Freire de Oliveira

Former Community Editor , Europeana Foundation

Europeana #EdTech Challenge: inspirational tips and tricks (Part 1)

Openly licensed content to get your creativity going.

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Vanitas Still Life
Edwaert Collier

The Europeana #EdTech Challenge has been launched! We’re offering €30,000 for the best idea(s) using technological processes and resources to inspire learners and educators with digital cultural heritage. This blog is part of a series featuring openly licensed datasets and content picks. This week, we look at the topics of natural and modern history to pique your imagination for a winning application.

Natural History Art from the Rijksmuseum

Does the natural world fascinate you? Discover a collection of paintings and drawings of flowers and animals from the Rijksmuseum. Science has relied heavily on illustrations to document natural elements. Take a look at one below by Flemish artist Jacob Hoefnagel. Part of the Archetypa studiaque patris book, the image is an engraving that depicts plants, insects and small animals.

Dieren en planten rond een sprinkhaan en een artishock; Insecten, bloemen en vruchten; Archetypa studiaque patris GeorgiI HoefnageliI. Hoefnagel, Jacob. 1592. Rijksmuseum. Public Domain.

Sounds of nature

If sounds of nature are also an inspiration for you, discover our collection of almost 1,500 audio files of bird songs. Recorded in the United Kingdom, during the late 20th century, this material presents the audio recording of garden sounds and of common birds in Britain. Check out below the Nightingale and Canary animated short video by Australian artist Andy Thomas. The artist created beautiful abstract shapes that react to bird song recordings from the archives of the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision.

Nightingale & Canary - Bird sounds visualized by Andy Thomas

Butterflies from the Museum of Natural History in Berlin

Colourful, beautiful flying insects, butterflies can teach us about natural life-cycles - the metamorphosis these winged creatures undergo is impressive! Take a look at our collection of over 400 photographs of butterflies, including additional scientific information. Known as triangle birdwing, the Trogonoptera trojana (shown below) is a butterfly native to the Philippines.

Trogonoptera trojana (Honrath, 1886). Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, GloBIS. CC BY-SA

WWI photographs from Austria-Hungary

Studying the past is a great way to educate the younger generations. Educators could take advantage of the extensive World War I collection available on Europeana to create apps for the classroom. For example, explore more than 37,000 photographs illustrating the Great War in the former Austria-Hungary monarchy. The photograph below is an example of the daily routine in the war field, the likes of which are crucial in showcasing a different, human side of the conflict.

Kriegsalbum 42, Bild 11639 | K.u.k. Kriegspressequartier, Lichtbildstelle - Wien. 1917. Österreichische Nationalbibliothek - Austrian National Library. Public Domain.

Swedish military aviation in historical images

Another example of military history in images is our collection of over 13,000 photographs, postcards, posters, floor plans, and caricatures, documenting the development of the Swedish Air Force from the late 19th century up to the 1980s. Explore black-and-white historical pictures of early sky pioneers.

En man klädd i flygardräkt kliver in i flygplan S 31 Spitfire. | Okänd fotograf. 1948-1955. Flygvapenmuseum. Public Domain.

Drawings from the Dutch Labour Movement

Learn how the Dutch dealt with social change by exploring our collection of almost 2,000 satirical drawings that portray the Dutch Labour Movement in the early 20th century. Discover the history of a social movement that campaigned for improving working conditions, voting rights and other social aspects in the Netherlands.

Werkeloos. Hahn, Albert, draughtsman. 1905. International Institute of Social History. Public Domain.

Apply now for the Europeana Challenge

Check out the Europeana #EdTech Challenge terms and conditions and take part in our competition for a chance of accessing €30,000!

Looking for more inspirational content? Follow us on Twitter and join the conversation using the hashtags #EuropeanaChallenge and #EuropeanaEdTechChallenge