Multiple educational programs based on the scientific concepts underpinning the examination and treatment of the Rode altarpiece have been developed for different age groups in line with national education directives and objectives. The intended didactic aims across all age groups are: to make science more accessible and relatable; to integrate the humanities and sciences; and to popularize heritage more broadly.
The Art Researchers learning program, intended for secondary-school pupils, brings future scientists together with heritage. They learn organic and inorganic chemistry - as mandated by the national school curriculum - through the lens of the research data obtained from the Rode altarpiece. The lessons help pupils to more easily make connections between chemistry, physics and cultural heritage through a medium that is infinitely more engaging than ordinary classroom lessons.
The program entitled The Treasure Chest Opens Up, so named because opening the altarpiece is akin to opening a treasure chest, is aimed at younger children. It gives them the foundational skills to observe and appreciate historic works and exposes them to art research and technical study via age-appropriate content and explanation. At the end of the lesson, the pupils become “restorers” and clean a part of a “work of art.”
As one of only five E-Space demonstrators, the Rode Project (reflecting Estonia’s reputation as Europe’s leading e-nation) has charted new ground in the delivery of educational materials and opportunities. E-Space, or Europeana Space, is an EU-funded project focused on the creative re-use of digital cultural content in service to cultural heritage. The Rode Demonstrator was put to use in another school-based educational program called Young Art Detectives. The program can be tailored creatively in an infinite number of ways for students from first to twelfth grade.