Diversity is the link that should bind us, contribute to our better mutual conversance, enrich us, but never be the stumbling stone, is one of the messages of the three-day-long seminar “Wealth of diversity – cultural history of minorities in Montenegro”, which the Centre for Civic Education (CCE) and HIPMONT organised in Kolašin.
The seminar gathered 28 history educators and educational professionals from the area of social science subjects with the aim to search for new methodical forms and contents to teach history in a formal education system in the spirit of humanities whose contents unite – not separate.
The focus of the seminar was on history and the history of the cultural heritage of minorities in Montenegro, and lectures included new methodical approaches to history teaching, with the presentation of cultural goods. Participants of the seminar, apart from new knowledge, gained insight into the most contemporary methodical approaches when presenting similar themes through the presentation of 10 workshops selected on the call of the same name, which dealt with the history and historical heritage of Albanians, Bosnian Muslims, Croatians, Jewish and Roma on the ground of Montenegro.
“The goal of the contemporary methodological approach was the presentation of our wealth of diversity we live in Montenegro. Diversity is the link that should bind us, contribute to our better mutual conversance, enrich us, but never be the stumbling stone. Therefore, the responsibility of history teachers is enormous, as they prepare for life those to whom the future belongs. If they learn to be tolerant and humane, then we do not need to worry about the future. This also means that we are on a good way to recognize and select those contents that would be part of the new future workbooks which would, in a way, satisfy needs of all people who live in Montenegro,” noted one of the authors of the workshops Sait Šabotic, from the Elementary school “Mileva Lajović Lalatović”.
Bojan Nenezić, from the Bureau for Education Services, assesses that “considering the high number of presenters, as well as attendees, the presentation of numerous facts, but also personal attitudes, reflections – the result of the so far experience, research, work with children was expected. What makes this seminar special are participants who, through the exchange of opinion and attitudes, have justified the name of the issue – “Wealth of diversity”, and I would also add – the respect of diversity. All of us who monitor the educational process are aware that the approach, presentation, selection of content intended for children are of great importance, therefore, the focus of the seminar was the methodical approach in teaching in elementary and secondary school, as well as correlation between subjects – dominantly history and music education, which is an additional value of this seminar.”
President of the HIPMONT, Rade Vujović, expressed great satisfaction with the quality of the seminar. “Montenegro as the state that aspires to be civic, must keep multiculturalism as its most important feature. In the Montenegrin education programme, we have 20% of freedom to create it ourselves, and considering that minorities are not represented enough in official workbooks, the very area seemed like the ideal one for improvement. However, the practice has shown that professors very often do not launch the initiatives, which was the basis for the idea of cooperation and organization of seminary to provide some help to professors which will not be mandatory. Lessons that will be printed are just the idea which professors will accept partially or completely. The intention is the best for constructing Montenegro as we want – civic, multi-ethnic, multicultural, and I consider this seminar as a very valuable one.”
The seminar is part of the project “Wealth of diversity – cultural history of minorities in Montenegro”, which is implemented by the Centre for Civic Education (CCE) and History Teachers Association of Montenegro (HIPMONT) with support of the Ministry of Justice, Human and Minority Rights.
Aldina Žudjelović, Project assistant