The IPN’s new app "Polish Underground State" was presented on 14 February 2020 during a special briefing with the participation of the Deputy President of the Institute of National Remembrance, Dr Mateusz Szpytma.
On the occasion of the 78th anniversary of the transformation of the Union of Armed Struggle into the Home Army, the Institute of National Remembrance has prepared numerous events and undertakings. One of them is the application "Polish Underground State", prepared on the basis of an educational game of the same title.
In response to popular demand and interest in the board game, its content has been transferred into a user- friendly web app. While playing the game, the participant will be able to learn more about the activities of such well-known figures as Witold Pilecki, August Emil Fieldorf or Aleksander Kamiński, but also less known Zbigniew Sujkowski, Władysław Sieroszewski or Helena Jamonttówna.
Now, by downloading the application, you can join the game and understand why the Polish Underground State is referred to as a worldwide phenomenon.
Click here to download the app:
The educational benefits of the app
New technology and its universality have enabled us to transform traditional educational materials into an even more effective educational tool. At the same time, this does not exclude the presence of printed media, but allows the dissemination of content / product / material through an additional medium. In fact, we have transferred the content of the educational game "Polish Underground State" into virtual space, thus responding to the needs and interests of our recipients. The virtual game is a simpler and more accessible form of expanding historical knowledge, with particular emphasis on the history of the Underground State. In contrast to publications, it encourages the participant to interact and actively participate in the game. The "Polish Underground State" is an educational game the main intention of which is to present the wide spectrum of activities of the Polish Underground State by displaying the portraits and biographies of people who were actively involved in underground activity within the structures of the Polish Underground State – presenting not only its military activities, but also emphasizing the role of civil administration. The game consists of several variants which can be freely modified and adapted to suit the age of the players. The application is easy to use, free and available to every computer owner - said Maciej Frycz from the IPN’s National Education Office in Szczecin, the co-author of the game.
The current state of knowledge about the Home Army within Polish society
Certain elements related to the activities of the Polish Underground State, such as the symbol of Fighting Poland are now well recognized. Our educational experience shows that almost anyone can name it and associate it with the Warsaw Uprising, sometimes with the entire period of World War II. It is also often used by patriotic clothing and gadget manufacturers. Unfortunately, fewer people associate the symbol with Anna Smoleńska – the co-creator of "Kotwica" [ the Anchor] and the fact of its dissemination as part of a small sabotage campaign. Therefore, the main intention of the game and its digital version was to present the phenomenon of the Polish Underground State, both from the perspective of the multitude of its activities but also through its individual members.
In our opinion, the Polish Underground State is identified for the most part with armed struggle, while the activities of the civil division, which was also an important pillar of Polish underground structures, are less frequently mentioned. Apart from the armed struggle, the Polish Underground State also included secret teaching, publishing activities and social assistance activities, which were characterized by, among others help offered to the Jewish population. Anyone who reaches for the "Polish Underground State" will not only broaden their knowledge of a global phenomenon but also find out more about the people who actually were responsible for each of these spheres of activity, "said Magdalena Ruczyńska, Head of the IPN’s National Education Office in Szczecin.
The app was prepared by :