COME AND LEARN WITH ME!
I'M A EUROPEAN CITIZEN TOO...
This project has been presented as an Erasmus+ KA229 which will involve two schools in two European countries, Italy and Czech Republic, working on the same theme of study: " Our Cultural Heritage and identity through traditions, folklore and customs”. The educational purpose is primarily to foster the sense of belonging to Europe for customs and traditions, favoring the comparison with pupils of a Czech Republic school and an Italian school, while simultaneously enhancing “identity” with their own territory. Our general objectives consist in: -celebrating The European year of Cultural Heritage 2018 which will enable students to become closer to and more involved with their and other cultural heritages. -promoting European values in accordance with Article 2 on the European Union -promoting Multilingualism which is a powerful symbol of the European Union's aspiration TO BE UNITED IN DIVERSITY -promoting intercultural awareness -enhancing and improving foreign languages and IT skills.
SCHOOLS INVOLVED IN THE PROJECT
I.I.S.S. LEONARDO DA VINCI
FASANO (BRINDISI) ITALY
Project School Coordinator
Our school is a secondary level (high school) public state school implemented on five year study courses with final State Exam which grants a Secondary Level Education Diploma corresponding to the fourth level of the European qualification framework. There are four study courses: Foreign languages lyceum(where students study English, French, Spanish or German), Scientific lyceum, Applied Science lyceum and Classical lyceum. The students that attend our school are 888, while our staff is made up of 100 teachers and 20 school collaborators.
We have decided to participate for EU funds through Erasmus Plus because we want our students to share their own and acknowledge other cultural Heritages as European citizens.
OBCHODNÍ AKADEMIE, PRAHA 3, KUBELÍKOVA 37
We are a high school (business academy), located almost in the center of Prague. We have around 400 students and 40 teachers. The history of our school dates back to 1913. For example, the famous Czech poet Jaroslav Seifert (the Nobel Prize for Literature) studied here. We have three study fields. Recently, Sports Management is the most popular field of study. Next, we have an economic lyceum (which is more general – similar to a grammar school) and a classical business academy.
We teach these languages in our school: English, German, Spanish and Russian.
The participants in the project activities include mainly teachers and students. Teachers took part to a training mobility whose aim was the project organization and the knowledge of the partner's school system. With reference to pupils, we have involved 48 students (24 from each partner schools) aged 16-18. They have been engaged in different kinds of activities, including sport, music and dance, traditional recipes, charity event organization, visits of museums and parks, outdoor activities in close contact with nature, sensorial experiences, work on ICT tools (e-book, videos, ppt presentations, etwinning activities). At the end of the project, they have organized a final show which has provided them with the opportunity to play music and dance together, show their project works and outcomes and share emotions and feelings about the whole experience. The school administration of both partner schools has provided great help in the project management and organization. Headteachers in both schools have encouraged the teachers and valued the project at all levels. Parents have given a great and concrete contribution to the project realization, both at home (providing excellent and warm homestay) and at school, helping the mobility of students in the planned outdoor activities. Cooperation with Local Institutions and Cultural Associations has resulted in visits in museums, parks, music and dance labs.
OUR MAIN GOALS
We planned to enhance European citizenship and the awareness of the great variety of Europe's culture. Our goal was to teach students to care about people and places around them, protecting national history and traditions and preserving the environment with the tools of modern innovation and technology. The participants have fully achieved this goal, showing great concern for their own culture, but eager to get to know other cultures and different lifestyles. They effectively created a little social system based on mutual respect and a deep sense of sharing. They proved excellent skills of self-organization and enjoyed doing activities together, they always acted "as a whole" and this shows well how much they benefited from this project and how deep it will influence their future life.
The greatest value of the project resulted in the spirit of cooperation and constant, mutual support.All the participants involved in the project have assured their contribution, according to their specific role and function. The principals of both schools have granted a general supervision of the project. The administrative staff has provided personal data information regarding students, families and teachers: moreover, it has provided cooperation in the budget management, the mobilities organization (flight, accommodation, travel documents, contact to travel agencies, etc.); the teachers from both Countries, directly involved in the project, have played a crucial role in the general coordination of all the participant subjects. They have interacted with students and families, spread information about the project both at school and in the local community, planned project activities, discussed and shared ideas and collected useful materials; furthermore, they have got information from the official Erasmus+ site and provided the students with the required documents, including documentation about privacy data protection, health and insurance; finally, they have established relations and partnership with local institutions and business to make the project develop beyond the class walls and have a huge impact on the entire local community. Other teachers of the participant schools have been involved in the project and they have assured their help with the activities and the support to students. The families of the involved students have provided a precious contribution as regards homestay and warm hospitality. They have offered their help in the local mobility of students and provided the host students with a real contact with the local culture and family life. The students, of course, have played a central role in the project. They have interacted with their partners and shared experiences, views and ideas. They have always acted in accordance with teachers’ and parents’ instructions and shown sign of responsibility and great enthusiasm about the project activities. Last, but not the least, caretakers helped the project management too, cleaning and organizing the places destined to the project activities. This active and constant teamwork has been the strong point of the project and it has been quite inspiring for all the actors involved in this extraordinary experience. The ability of all the participants to create an inclusive and cohesive group has been amazing and it is the best result of the whole project. It has been easy for students to go beyond stereotypes and prejudice and this represents a SIGN OF HOPE FOR OUR FUTURE!
A NEW LEARNING APPROACH
Basically, the project had four fundamental pillars: hometown tradition and folklore, Local production, domestic and international market, Local Architecture and the Preservation of natural environment and local landscape as the greatest form of beauty. To give the students adequate knowledge on these topics, a cross-curricular approach has been necessary and this is the reason why different school subjects have been integrated; they include mainly: Science, History, Art, Maths and Economy, Geography, English as Second Language, ICT, Music, Dance and Sport. The students have worked on their own, in pairs and in groups and they have studied on a great variety of sources: books, magazines, websites and so on. To make knowledge and learning more effective, we have invited some experts outside the school to present their experience and expertise. Just to mention some examples, the students met dancers, musicians, the director of an archaeological museum, people running local business based on tradition and environmental preservation. On field-experience is always involving for the students and these meeting resulted particularly inspiring and successful. A crucial point of our project has been studying and working on ICT tools in a cooperative learning context and the students have been continuously encouraged to use their foreign languages and their IT skills when communicating and publishing the results of their work
FAMILY LIFE AS THE BEST FORM OF CULTURAL INTEGRATION
Families and homestay play a key role in our project. We are firmly convinced that family life enables students to understand and welcome the way of life and lifestyle of the host nation, transforming them into global citizens. This experience proves to be useful if they ever choose to work or settle abroad. Besides, receiving warmth and hospitality in a foreign land enables students to form long-lasting bonds.