SESAM GR: Education and Other Stories

SESAM GR: Education and Other Stories

20. April 2021 SESAM

Teaching and Learning through Storytelling? SESAM makes it possible. SESAM GR ’is a cross-border project of more than 20 partners from the regions of Lorraine, Luxembourg, Saarland, the Federation of Wallonia and Brussels, East Belgium and Rhineland-Palatinate. Due to this cross-border and cross-educational partnership and a total budget of 7.28 million euros, the project is considered the largest educational project in Europe.
Now, a big project also has big goals; and SESAM GR ’has undoubtedly got it.
The main task of the project funded by the European joint initiative “Interreg” is to provide innovative answers to the challenges of a globalized, multicultural and digitized society.

The VCRP has been involved in the SESAM GR ’project as a sub-project partner since February 2021.
“We are very happy to be part of this project.” reports Dr. Konrad Faber, managing director of the VCRP. “It gives us the opportunity to try out very current and future-oriented e-didactic concepts of media-based teaching and learning and to focus on topics of enormous social importance, such as ecology, education for democracy or cultural diversity. And all with a view to the opportunities and challenges of digitization. ”

An innovative format based on the storytelling method is not intended to “teach” the learners; Rather, they should be guided to a point where they begin to reflect on socially relevant and future-oriented topics. Learners should develop the ability to change perspective and be able to independently work out a point of view that they support.
“Stories are thought aids, instructional guides, and moral compasses.” – this is how the journalist Aleks Krotoski summarized the task and the usefulness of stories in an article for the newspaper “The Guardian”. They contribute in a very special way to picking up people emotionally. You motivate sustainably. They make abstract concepts understandable.

In our sub-project, which runs until the end of February 2022, we design, develop and test methods and scenarios at VCRP that revolve around the co-creative creation of interactive hypermedia. The approach is characterized by the fact that learners do not take on the role of passive listeners, but are actively involved in the development of a story in small groups. The planning and development of a story inevitably leads to intensively dealing with a topic and looking at what is happening from different perspectives. In the end, a narrator must be able to put himself in the shoes of both the protagonist and the antagonist in order to tell a story that is captivating.
In order to reinforce the aspect of the change of perspective, the learners are given the task of developing not only a linear story with one storyline, but a story with several storylines, which enables listeners at certain nodes to see the further course of the story choose and thus influence what is happening yourself.
The developed stories are then implemented in the media by the learners; either in the form of hypertexts, interactive videos or audio files.

Together with student teachers, the VCRP develops realistic scenarios for this methodology that can be used in various teaching settings. For this purpose, a digital method case is being developed, which will be published together with additional materials and particularly well implemented examples on the portal (currently under construction).

If you are now wondering whether our project will have a happy ending in the third act, we invite you to join us on our adventure. You can follow all the news about the project on our VCRP blog and in future at

About the author

Tim Wiegers: