Meemoo uses Red Hat OpenShift and IBM Cloud to make digital assets of Flemish archives available to more than 65.000 teachers,future teachers and their pupils in Flanders and Brussels
Since 2016, meemoo, the Flemish Institute for Archives, makes quality digital assets for educators. It supports the cultural heritage and art organisations in Flanders and Brussels with their digital content, from the digitization and archiving to distribution. Currently meemoo has 5 million digital assets and they are running a digital archive of 14 petabyte.
Well before distance learning became part of our new normal, meemoo wanted to make sure that the cultural assets were always digitally available to teachers and ultimately pupils. Turning to the cloud was the next logic step.
Today the digital cultural content is available for more than 65.000 elementary and secondary teachers and future teachers in Flanders and Brussels via an online platform called “The Archive for Education”. The platform, which is running on Red Hat OpenShift on IBM Cloud provides teachers with a variety of audiovisual material from public service broadcasters like VRT, regional broadcasters, various cultural heritage institutions and government bodies.
With an offer selected by and for teachers and tailored to education, the Archive for Education guarantees educationally relevant material that is easily searchable and can be used in many classroom contexts. Teachers can access all assets through this portal: https://onderwijs.hetarchief.be/. It is supported by the Flemish Ministery of Education, encouraging teachers to use those assets in their lessons.
Up until now, the platform was available to teachers. From this school year on, the platform is also available for pupils. This allows teachers to refer to certain audio and video in their online classes to which pupils will also have access. This gives them the opportunity to dive deeper into certain topics by themselves, in the classroom but also at home.
“The platform was completely renewed this summer and now, thanks to the new pupil room, teachers in secondary education can also give viewing and listening assignments in this image database.” says Leen De Bruyn, Project Manager Education at meemo.
“The renewed site loads faster than ever”, says history teacher Bart Laureys. “The improved interface also makes it even easier to incorporate audiovisual material into my lessons. I can already see myself setting up assignments for the pupils, that will be great!”
“When you’re developing new features, like meemoo is doing, and you need to test with trial and error, the Red Hat OpenShift platform allows you to develop the individual components you need. If one of them doesn’t work out, you remove it and add another one. I like to compare it to a Lego set”. says Tim Rentmeesters from Red Hat.
“In this first phase the platform was only available to teachers but now students will also be using it. With IBM Cloud meemoo has the flexibility to scale as needed. This flexibility allowed them to rethink their platform and adapt it to the new normal of distance education.”, says Bart Bogaert, Cloud Platform Technical Lead at IBM.
Working alongside cultural, media and government organisations, meemoo provides expert services, knowledge and advice for the preservation and use of digital and other archives. Together with its partners, the Flemish Institute for Archives brings the past back to life and prepares this content for the future, safeguarding it digitally and ensuring it remains accessible and usable. Specifically, meemoo digitises and archives Flemish audiovisual and other content for over 150 partner organisations. You can search through descriptions of over a million audiovisual items at hetarchief.be and download high-quality images of works of art from Flemish collections at lukasweb.be. The Archive for Education audio and video content is also available for over 65,000 teachers and pupils to use in the classroom. Furthermore, meemoo supports organisations and artists with information and assistance through knowledge-sharing platforms such as CEST and TRACKS, and by collaborating on projects and answering over 200 questions from the field each year.
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