The future of the European raw materials industry is dependent on building strong connections with society at large. Without an accurate understanding of the importance of mineral resources as well as how and from where these resources are obtained, citizens cannot contribute to the well-being of Europe in regards to securing essential mineral resources in ethical and sustainable ways.
The Briefcase Project aims to foster such connections and understanding among primary and secondary students by providing engaging educational materials that teach about the role of minerals and mining in daily life and related social and economic issues.
Using an innovative method, it teaches students ranging from 6 to 14 years of age to identify minerals they use in their everyday lives and encourages them to reflect on issues like conflict minerals, consequences of purchase decisions and sustainability of mining operations, as well as the importance of recycling and climate change.
Many Europeans do not want mining taking place close to them, but it is imperative that citizens develop social awareness of how our consumption of goods can affect people living and working in other parts of the world where resources are exploited. Europe is no better with regard to our social conscience if we import so-called “conflict minerals” or resources that are not ethically and sustainably sourced. The Briefcase project helps increase awareness of such issues among adults such as teachers as well as the students who use this resource.
These lessons are better retained because they are interactive. Each “Briefcase” contains actual mineral samples as well as a variety of products that contain the minerals. Students work to match the minerals with their corresponding products, while learning about the different properties of each mineral.
The Briefcase project has been bringing minerals and mining closer to students in Spain for more than 15 years, and it is now accessible across Europe through the project website and project workshops. Current development is underway to create a 3D/Augmented reality Briefcase called 3DBriefcase in order to attract older students and encourage the general public to visit museums and science centres.
Euromines is a proud partner of The Briefcase Project.
The game of “The Briefcase of mineral applications” aims to familiarise the player with minerals that are used in the manufacture of everyday objects. Given the era of a growing prevalence of online teaching and learning, we believe tools such as this one could prove to be effective and beneficial for the education of young people. After all, it is now that their sense of responsibility and consciousness is forming.
To learn more about this exciting new project, visit: