Educational project fuses history with environmental awareness

Young visitors to the Malta Maritime Museum can explore engaging displays at exhibition about the oceans
Photo: Heritage Malta

Heritage Malta has launched new educational material as part of its ongoing exhibition at the Malta Maritime Museum in Vittoriosa, aimed at deepening the understanding of the oceans’ critical role in preserving cultural heritage.

The adventure has just become more interesting for young visitors at the exhibition An Island at the Crossroads. A new informative guide and an interactive worksheet will now help avid explorers engage further with the exhibition’s displays, while instilling awareness and inspiring action on one of the biggest challenges humanity is currently facing – the protection of seas and oceans.

The didactic material explores pressing issues such as ghost gear, ocean acidification, sea level rise and the ocean’s role as a carbon sink. Young visitors have the opportunity to delve into these topics alongside the ‘Clean Oceans’ display in the exhibition, fostering a holistic understanding of the challenges facing the world’s seas.

These resources were produced through a joint effort between Heritage Malta’s publishing, communications, education and design departments. They form part of a number of initiatives stemming from the Clean Oceans Bilateral Initiative, a collaboration between Heritage Malta and the Stavanger Maritime Museum – MUST of Norway.

Over the past two years, these two institutions have harnessed cutting-edge technology to digitise and record both tangible and intangible maritime cultural heritage, a process which has become increasingly urgent given the escalating threats posed by human activity.

Commenting during the launch, Heritage Malta CEO Noel Zammit said: “This initiative marks a significant step forward in our ongoing efforts to address the gap between maritime heritage and environmental conservation. By highlighting the interplay between clean oceans and cultural legacies, we aim to inspire visitors, especially the young, to take action in safeguarding our marine ecosystems.”

Vanessa Ciantar, assistant manager of the agency’s Education and Outreach Department, commented on how these tools serve as a bridge between past and present, and can help make exhibitions more effective in serving as catalysts of progress. She also announced an upcoming educational programme targeting Year 8 and Year 9 students.

Scheduled between October and December, the programme will highlight the importance of ocean conservation. Students will also experience Dive into History 360, a virtual reality activity offered by Heritage Malta’s Underwater Cultural Heritage Unit.

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