ITT Marco Polo
ITT Marco Polo is a public Upper Secondary School based in Florence, which proposes a specific study plan oriented to preparing young students for working in the Tourism professional sector. It also offers a field of studies as a Linguistic Secondary School. More than 1500 students are enrolled in the School, and about 130 teachers are employed.
According to the latest evolution of Web 2.0, in recent years ITT Marco Polo has massively invested in the adoption of new technologies both at infrastructural level and also in terms of teaching approaches. Professors of Arts History, Economics of Tourism, Computer Lab, Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Foreign Languages are all deeply involved in the promotion and adoption of innovative educational activities and students are stimulated to use new technologies, such as Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, not only to research information and prepare materials, but even to learn in a more challenging environment. The study plan has been traditionally oriented to integrate conceptual contents together with practical activities that are deployed by the students.
Among the most compelling learning activities implemented at ITT Marco Polo, there are several projects developed in collaboration with the Education and Research Department of the Uffizi Gallery aiming at promoting among students the knowledge of the historical and artistic heritage of Florence. These activities have played a part in enhancing education first, then they have become work-linked training. Classes from the Technical Tourism and the Linguistic School have been involved in the following projects: “Firenze perBene” promoted by the Unesco Office of Florence, “Communicating Art” at Ognissanti, “Ambassadors of Art” at the Bargello Museum and the Grand-Ducal Treasures Museum at Pitti Palace, “Ambassadors of Art and Green” at Boboli Gardens, and “Practitioners in Cultural Heritage”. In all these projects students have been trained through a peer-to-peer learning process as tourism guides presenting to visitors and tourists in different languages (English, French, Spanish and German) the main art works on display in the above mentioned museums.