The site is a colorful and interactive imaginary recreation of Leonardo da Vinci's studio. Users can click on 12 items for more information. Produced by BBCi/Open University, this site is part of a large collection of materials on da Vinci.
Type of Material:
To supplement a course on the Renaissance.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
To inform students about the range of talents associated with da Vinci. To place da Vinci in context with his contemporaries during the Renaissance. To educate students into the complexity of the man know as Leonardo da Vinci.
Target Student Population:
Junior High, High School, College.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Some knowledge about da Vinci and the Renaissanace would be helpful. Basic computer skills.
Explore Leonardo's Studio is part of a large site sponsored by BBCi/Open University on Leonardo da Vinci. The interactive site allows users to explore 12 items from da Vinci's studio: his c.v., a painting in progress, painting materials, the camera obscura, Leonardo's interest in anatomy, an Italian dictionary, a book on learning Latin, a Renaissance art book, a book on Greek philosophy, a book on Renaissance Italy, a flying machine, and a Treatise on birds. Acting as a detective the user reconstructs a profile of Leonardo da Vinci using the 12 items. The site engages students in material they are likely to be curious about, such as Leonardo's interest in inventing a flying machine and his dissecting of cadavers. The stie introduces important concepts related to the Renaissance, e.g. the rebirth of interest in classical literature and in art during the Renaissance. Students are allowed the opportunity to explore the studio in a flexible manner, depending on their interests.
Explore Leonardo's Studio is a great introduction to the originial "Renaissance Man." For upper level high school history classes and for college courses, I would include the web site www.lairweb.org.nz/leonardo/life.html . Also, produced by BBC, this site provides more detailed information about da Vinci and his importance in history and the Renaissance. There are not enouoght links included in the site for students interested in exploring the material in more depth. The existing links are of high quality, however. Some issues are discussed in more depth than other's. For example, artist's materials are discussed at length, but Greek Philosophy and Renaissance Italy are not.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Explore Leonardo's Studio does not include learning objectives. The site's use depends upon the creativity of the educator. However,
using the expanded site on Leonardo da Vinci, also produced by BBC, raising important questions, which can be turned into learning objectives: e.g. What do the experts think about Leonardo da Vinci?, and How did da Vinci influence technological advances for his era?, Was da Vinci a genius?. The expanded site offers more detailed information about Leonardo's life, his inventions, and his relationships with political leaders and contemporary artists. The segment on Leonardo, the man and his machines includes information about his military machines, 18 little know fables about da Vinci, information about his drawings, his music, mirror writing, and his interest in sculpture.
The site potential effectiveness as a teaching tool for upper level high school and college use depends upon expansion of this site to include the broader BBC site.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
Naviagation is easy even with access to the larger site on da Vinci. Flash 4 is required. The interactive timeline is a good feature. Site seems to be well maintained.
Other Issues and Comments:
Because the site is produced by BBC, there are advertisements for items for sale. The site also advertises courses through Open University.
Search by ISBN?
It looks like you have entered an ISBN number. Would you like to search using what you have
entered as an ISBN number?
Searching for Members?
You entered an email address. Would you like to search for members? Click Yes to continue. If no, materials will be displayed first. You can refine your search with the options on the left of the results page.