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Ricerca per l'innovazione della scuola italiana
Innovazione metodologica e organizzativa nelle scuole piccole

The dBook in small and isolated schools

Ambito: Ricerca endogena

At international level, there are different research perspectives that look at schools located in isolated, marginal and small contexts. These examine the relationship between school/territory/context, the idea of ​​space as a social and productive place, the organizational aspects relating to sizing policies, the use of financial resources in schools in Europe, aspects concerning the curriculum and multi-classes, and finally the issue of distance from the main services, including educational ones, and the lack of resources to which the issue of technology is linked as a tool to overcome the remoteness and difficulties often caused by the size of a small school.

INDIRE’s research on the territorial contexts, where small Italian schools operate, has also identified territorial clusters characterized by marked isolation concerning both transport and network connections. The research on the dBook as a tool to overcome didactic/educational problems arising from scarce connectivity, often raised by teachers and managers who work in geographically isolated contexts, is therefore based on the analysis of scientific literature and local needs. The device also offers a repertoire of tools that can open up new didactic scenarios in small schools and multi-classes that will thus become a testing ground for virtuous innovative practices, which can also be extended to large schools.

Research questions

D1: Is the solution of network connection problems offered by the dBook able to enable the processes of inclusion, sharing and collaboration aimed at countering the isolation that characterizes small schools’ students, also allowing teachers to carry out outdoor teaching practices capable of better relating the curriculum and the territory?

Q2: Does the possibility offered by the dBook to co-design educational paths with pupils have an impact on educational personalization processes?

Q3: Can the processes of inclusion and personalization activated through the dBook have an impact on the metacognitive dimension of learning and on the emotional intelligence of pupils?

The research questions will have an impact on the quality of the educational experience achieved in small schools. In fact, the research intends to detect whether the possibilities offered by the dBook, in terms of solving connection problems and participatory planning by the students of the curricular activities, can positively affect the inclusion processes, more strictly linked to geographically isolated territories, and more generally on educational personalization processes.


  1. Pilot phase target: 4 teachers from small schools in 5 classes involved for a total number of 70 students of the 2nd and 4th grades of primary school and 2 multi-classes made up of  4th and 5th grades and 1st, 2nd and 3rd grades (involved from January 2022 ) of primary school.
  2.   Extended experimental phase target: an additional 15 teachers will be involved for an indicative total of more 15 classes in the territories of the peripheral areas of our country.
  3. The final dissemination intends to reach a much wider target of teachers with virtual seminars aimed at all the small schools belonging to the Movement (currently 500 institutes)