Dimitris, a 16-year-old high-school student, has never been good at history. He wasn't really interested in studying long, pretty boring texts about past eras, long gone, or listening to stories about people that have lived and died many centuries before him. On the other hand he really enjoyed visiting archeological sites and monuments either with his classmates or with his family. He was pretty much excited when his teacher at the school announced them that they were going to visit the archaeological site of ancient Olympia within the framework of the school history lesson. Meanwhile, the very next summer the Olympic Games will take place in Athens and Dimitris is very interested in visiting the place where the Olympic Games took place during the ancient years. All students wanted to learn the history of the Games and a field trip to the birth place of the Olympic Games was an ideal start .
The day before the trip Dimitris and his classmate Maria decided to get some information concerning the archaeological site of Olympia . They visited relevant web sites and they collected information concerning the archeological site and the Olympic Games in the classical years, so that they had a good grasp of the site and the major sport events in the past. Quite interesting was the web site of Olympia , as it allowed them to take a visual tour around the place and to know the buildings and the monuments excavated there.
The next day all students together with their teacher set out to Olympia .
After arriving there they first got to the reception's desk where the receptionist gave students PDA devices with Internet access. The PDAs also contained a built in digital camera allowing students to take photos of the visit. After leaving the reception students entered the archaeological site and they turned on their PDAs. They were ready for their visit. The teacher gave them additional information on the use of the PDAs and the visit began.
As they are visiting the archaeological site the students are requested to connect to the specific area of the MoTFAL platform. The students are performing their visit and in the same time they have the opportunity to enrich their visit by taking advantage of the services provided by the platform. The project's platform gives them for example the possibility to see how the stadium in ancient Olympia looked like in the 5 th century b.C. The stadium appears to them as it was 2500 years ago. The students compare the picture offered by the platform to the current state of the stadium. The teacher asks the students to emphasize on the differences and write a short report about them when they are back in the classroom. In this way the students get through the specific activity the ability to place historical events in space and time and therefore comprehend the historical events as an entity in space and time. Moreover the platform provided students with information on the history of the Olympic Games and explained the way the sports were performed in Ancient Olympia, the regulations as well as the role of the judges and so forth.
Moreover the MoTFAL system allows students to communicate with their classmates whoa have not joined them in the field trip and that they stayed at the school. The first group of the students who are on the field trip may use the system's services in order to send text messages or even pictures to their classmates and in this way give them a concrete idea concerning their visit experience. The second group back in the classroom has the possibility to receive these messages, and send back comments and relevant questions. The teachers of both groups guide the students so that they don't incline from the desired target, which is the comprehension of the historical background.
In the following students also visited the ancient monument of Bouleuterion . Using the PDA devices the students had the opportunity to experience a virtual representation of the monument as it was thousand years ago. In the virtual picture shown on the PDAs students could also see people of the ancient epoch walking around and discussing among them.
As students were continuing their visit they walked in front of the Palaestra. While their teacher explained them the use of this monument the students downloaded from their PDA a relevant video. Watching the video the students had the opportunity to see the way ancient athletes were exercising in wrestling and jumping. The students were impressed by the way ancient athletes performed the jumps. They kept in their hands two small weights made out of stone, which they threw away just before they jumped. Students were so excited that they asked their teacher whether they could perform jumps in the same way during their Gymnastics back at the school.
At the end of their visit the teacher asked students to download the lesson material that had been preloaded by him onto the database. The students downloaded additional information on their visit as well as relevant exercises. The students following the instructions given are engaged in answering several questions, that may include: search for the right historical source, elaboration of the historical source (reading, finding the meaning of words and historical terms in the glossary, searching for further information), selection of information etc. In this way the students orientate themselves in the learning process.