Click to: riverhouses.org/2020-albania
(This is our first Weekly World Heritage post for the 2020–2021 homeschool year. Print your own River Houses World Heritage Calendar and follow along with us, and add your name to our weekly mailing list to get great homeschool teaching ideas delivered right to your mailbox all through the year.)
Albania in southeastern Europe is one of our homeschool countries-of-the-week, so why not spend a few minutes today learning about one of Albania’s World Heritage Sites: the Historic Centers of Berat and Gjirokastra.
The two historic cities of Berat and Gjirokastra contain architectural and cultural remains that extend from the ancient Illyrian period to the present day:
“These two fortified historic centres are remarkably well preserved, and this is particularly true of their vernacular buildings. They have been continuously inhabited from ancient times down to the present day. Situated in the Balkans, in Southern Albania, and close to each other, they bear witness to the wealth and diversity of the urban and architectural heritage of this region.
“Berat and Gjirokastra bear witness to a way of life which has been influenced over a long period by the traditions of Islam during the Ottoman period, while at the same time incorporating more ancient influences. This way of life has respected Orthodox Christian traditions which have thus been able to continue their spiritual and cultural development, particularly at Berat.
“Gjirokastra was built by major landowners. Around the ancient 13th century citadel, the town has houses with turrets (the Turkish kule) which are characteristic of the Balkans region. Gjirokastra contains several remarkable examples of houses of this type, which date from the 17th century, but also more elaborate examples dating from the early 19th century.
“Berat bears witness to a town which was fortified but open, and was over a long period inhabited by craftsmen and merchants. Its urban centre reflects a vernacular housing tradition of the Balkans, examples of which date mainly from the late 18th and the 19th centuries. This tradition has been adapted to suit the town’s life styles, with tiered houses on the slopes, which are predominantly horizontal in layout, and make abundant use of the entering daylight.“ (UNESCO World Heritage Centre #569)
You can find a gallery of additional photos of the Historic Centers of Berat and Gjirokastra on the World Heritage Centre’s website.
World Heritage Sites are cultural or natural landmarks of international significance, selected for recognition by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. More than 1000 such sites have been recognized in over 160 countries, and we feature one every Wednesday, drawn from one of our homeschool countries-of-the-week. You can find a complete list online at the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and in Wikipedia.
The World Heritage Centre also has a free and comprehensive World Heritage education kit for teachers, as well as a wonderful full-color wall map of World Heritage Sites (riverhouses.org/2020-wh-map), available for the cost of shipping. Why not add them both to your own homeschool library. 🗺
What world treasures will you be exploring in your homeschool this Cygnus Term? 😊
❡ Books in the running brooks: You can always turn to your River Houses almanac, atlas, and history encyclopedia (riverhouses.org/books) for more information about any of our countries-of-the-week. The almanac has profiles of all the nations of the world on pages 745–852; the endpapers of the atlas are indexes that will show you where all of the individual national and regional maps may be found; the history encyclopedia includes national histories on pages 489–599; and you can find additional illustrations, flags, and other mentions through the indexes in each of these volumes. For an ideal little lesson, just write the name of the Weekly World Heritage Site on your homeschool bulletin board, find its location in your atlas, read the WHC’s brief description aloud, look at a picture or two, and you’re done. Over the course of the year, without even realizing it, your students will absorb a wealth of new historical, geographical, and cultural information. 🇦🇱
❡ The great globe itself: This is one of our regular Homeschool States & Countries posts featuring historical and natural sites of international importance. Download a copy of our River Houses World Heritage Calendar (riverhouses.org/calendars) and follow along with us as we tour the planet, and add your name to our weekly mailing list (riverhouses.org/newsletter) to get great homeschool teaching ideas delivered right to your mailbox all through the year. 🌍
➢ Sign Up: riverhouses.org/newsletter
➢ Free Calendars: riverhouses.org/calendars
➢ More Countries: riverhouses.org/topics/states
➢ #TheRiverHouses #Homeschool · #RHstates