Lifelong Learning Programme

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Title of the Experience
Some metal elements
Country where it took place
School typology
Lower Secondary School
Thematic Area
Experience typology
Teaching in class
Type of contact
Description of the Experience
Opis skúsenosti I do not know whether students perceive chemical elements around them because they take almost everything for granted. I am sure that they have not thought about the fact that each chemical element which we can find in nature and mainly metals had to be discovered sometime because it is part of earth core.
It is connected with the development of human race and its needs. At the early beginning the dominant role was up to chance, human remembered the experience any many of this experiences are used also nowadays. We know three periods in human development according to the basic material that humans used. This can be usually well remembered by students. It was stone age, bronze age, but they do not know what the bronze is – that it is alloy made of zinc and copper and iron age which lasts until now but they do not realize even that.
Gold –Aurum, means morning aurora, named after its colour and shine. We will never know who the first discovered the gold was because at that time people did not know how to do any records and they did not even needed it for their survival. In nature gold occurs totally clear which means that it is not part of any alloy. It occurs in forms of veins, pieces – nuggets, tabs. Human found it mainly thanks to its shine. Clear gold is very mellow and can be manufactured also in cold conditions which means that it was enough to take gold and sculpt it with simple tools into the shape they wanted. First thing sculpted from it was a bowl which replaced hands. At that time gold had only practical meaning to humans. When the exchange trade was over and it was needed to have some money, gold was not used for this purpose. As money were used milestones, necklaces, the first sterling metal was silver. The first silver coins are deposited in museum in Banská Štiavnica. Banská Štiavnica used to be well known mining town where ferrous metals were mined – also gold. Nowadays are mines closed even though it is considered that they will be reopened, but there is no investor that would have done the geological exploration. The most of gold is in sea water but there are no technologies which would be profitable. It is not possible to find out when gold started to be as valuable as it is today. Partially it can be connected with its properties – that it does not change, does not react with acids except the mixture of two acids – Aqua Regia, but those are its chemical properties. People probably started to perceive its beauty – colour and shine, started to use it as money. Gold is not suitable as sterling metal even though it was used for this purpose for some time. In recent times it was used in stomatology mainly because it is stable but it was replaced by other materials. Gold is probably the most malleable metal because you can flatten it to thickness of one atom, it has greenish colour and it is almost translucent. It is also extremely mineable and from the little amount of gold a very long gold stripe can be made. Minimally 300 years it is a symbol of richness and luxury. Even states are owners of gold, which is deposited in safes of banks in the form of bars which are also called ingots and each has its own sign.
Probably the biggest hunt after the gold was in 19th century at the territory of today’s USA – so called gold fevers erupted. As soon as there was a mention about a new mine crowds of prospectors started to go there. Some of them got rich, some died on the road so later it was stated by state what a prospector have to have with him. Banks, posts, hotels started to be created near mines therefore some big cities arose – for example San Francisco. Even this is the evidence that everything is connected.
Price of the gold changes – once it is up once it is down. The clearness of gold is stated in carats – which means how much of pure gold is used in 1000 units. 7 c.(375) 14c.(585) which is typically jewellery gold, 18 c., 22 c. and 24 c.(999,9) are used.
I don’t think that today’s youth would somehow appreciated gold, at least they do not say it. They have other values. Gold has significantly influenced history of human and it was the aim of almost each cruise since Columbus. Students have to think what has some value in their lives.
I consider this experience as positive.

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Dissemination Seminar in Florence

31 October 2015 The seminar has been held in ITIS “A. Meucci” one of the schools involved within Goerudio project activities. Its main aim was to promote the results of the project toward a broad sample of stakeholders even overcrossing the number of people directly involved in the production of project outcomes. This purpose has been totally achieved especially thanks to the participation of students and teachers coming from different schools or from other classes instead of those ones directly involved within the project activities.