‘Children and teachers want to be able to distinguish facts from opinions, and are looking for knowledge that helps them put incidents and attacks in a broader perspective.’ Terrorism expert Beatrice de Graaf recognised that schools need up-to-date information on conflicts, security and terrorism.
How to talk about a terror attack in class?
Together with programme director of Information Science Frans Wiering, she came up with a plan for an online platform with historical and inclusive articles and lesson plans to help teachers put terrorism and polarisation in the right perspective. With the combined knowledge and help from colleagues (especially Mariëtte de Haan and Bjorn Wansink) and students of the History, Religious Studies, Pedagogical, Educational, Psychology and Computer Science departments a prototype of the website came into existence within three months. Since then, twenty schools in and around Utrecht participate in the project.
The project is part of the strategic theme Institutions for Open Societies, where researchers join forces to tackle two vital questions: Why do societies develop so divergently? And how do institutions contribute to the formation of open and sustainable societies?