IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


Research project led by IOE academic innovates learning about European identity

18 October 2016

Creative Connections


An EU-funded research project, Creative Connections, led by Dr Mary Richardson, has been featured as a key example of innovation in learning about European identity.

Creative Connections (2012-2014) used art as a means of exploring citizenship. It offered pupils the opportunity to explore ideas and perceptions of European identities through visual media and online blogging.

Creative Connections is the first project we know of to use automatic online translation tools to enable pupils to communicate in their own languages (seven were used in all). Pupils 'talked' about images they had created and posted online.

The project also offers a rich list of lesson plans and practical advice (such as how to set up a blog or manage online translation tools), and links to resources for teaching.

School Education Gateway cites Creative Connections as a key project that has taken existing resources and given them a different perspective, in new contexts.

Speaking of the project, Dr Richardson said:

"Now is surely one of the most pivotal times in European history for ensuring good communication across what are fast developing exclusive 'borders', and now is also the time to better understand ourselves as global citizens.

"I hope that projects such as Creative Connections will help teachers to facilitate discussions that allow children to cement relationships with their peers in other countries."



  • David, 10  (Spain) My School (montage)
    "Because of the cuts, there is no money to finish building the building of the new school. For that the boys and girls from the fourth to the sixth grade of primary school study in barracks."