Promoting Geographical Competences in Primary School through Active Learning and Digital Storytelling. Results of a Study from Genoa, Italy


  • Flavio Manganello Institute for Educational Technology, National Research Council, Genoa, Italy
  • Martina Rampulla Primary Education Sciences, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy


In this contribution, the role of active learning and digital technologies, namely Digital Storytelling, in promoting geographical competences within primary school education is explored. A study is presented, conducted in the specific setting of a fourth-grade primary class in Genoa, a metropolitan city in the Italian region of Liguria, exemplifying the application of this educational approach. The theoretical foundations for this study encompass three key pillars: preserving the epistemological and content-based features of Geography in primary education, recognizing the value of pedagogical dimensions and strategies in developing geographical competences, and leveraging digital technologies, including non-specialized ones, to support the design of learning activities that employ innovative methods and exploit the potentials of narrative techniques. Within this framework, Digital Storytelling is critically evaluated for its capacity to stimulate fruitful learning dynamics, and to encourage the development of geographical, creative, and digital competences. The findings of the study highlighted that the active and creative use of Digital Storytelling markedly enriched Geography education. The implemented approach contributed enhance geographical competences related to pupils’ understanding and articulation of their place in the world, while also fostering a positive attitude towards the subject.


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(concise) Thematic issue (ed. by Giampietro Mazza, Giacomo Zanolin)