Archive of European Projects

Eurotopia: Collaborative Learning in a world with disappearing borders
Start date: 01 Sep 2014, End date: 31 Aug 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"Eurotopia: Collaborative learning in a world with disappearing borders" is a project organised by the Stedelijke Scholengemeenschap Nijmegen, in cooperation with five other schools from Hungary, Spain, Poland and Turkey. After many years of working together within a large scale cultural exchange project, these schools decided to band together, to combat a designated problem. This project addresses a need we as organisations have had for years; to help our students improve their research and investigative skills . In higher grades and higher education this problem was designated. Students have not had a lot of experience in the first three years of education regarding research. Furthermore, we have noticed for a long time that the impact within an intensive program like we did in earlier years speeds up the learning process for all parties involved. This is very evident in the many products, evaluations and opinions that came forth after and during these exchanges. This high-impact project will continue for at least three years, and will be evaluated yearly. Like our projects of previous years, it build upon the system of one-on-one partnering. We decided to continue with our exchanges, but to have it strive towards a goal that is very important to all of our organisations: to motivate students, to combat dropping out, and first and foremost; give our students the necessary skills to excel in further education and in future jobs. This project will start in the first year of education, preparation in the second year, and a physical exchange in the third year. Together with our partners we studied our school's policy plan, and the lifelong learning objectives set by the European Union. After a process we came up with five key areas to be addressed in our program: -Beta-Excellence -Cultural competences -Internationalisation and European dimension -Sports and talent -Social studies For all these key areas, our schools will create assignments and research objectives. Our students will go abroad, visit each other's environments, and together they will work and find out the valid knowledge they will need to create products. There will be many products flowing forth from this program. Tangible and intangible. There will be presentations made, a portfolio, research reports, and many other products that will be made available for dessimination. We have dozens of teachers on standby, nationally and internationally, to help create, design and work together to create the project materials. These materials will be checked by all participants, and implemented in the program. During the physical exchange in the third year, there will be a program in the Netherlands and abroad that gives the students the oppurtunity to see and experiences workshops and showcases of all five key areas. They will work together to research and investigate questions set, inside and outside of school. We organise a lot of activities that give the students a chance to see, experience and participate in events that have directly to do with these areas. In previous years, we had a number of student participants of over 200 a year, with as many students from the other countries as well. We are absolutely sure we will get the same amount of students taking part in the next three years. Apart from students, staff and parents will also be actively involved. Parents as hosts of our students and foreign students, and staff has an imperative role as well. The staff will be responsible for guiding a group of students, showing, guiding and explaining the assignments they have to do, check materials and evaluate and grade. Apart from these three very important groups, this project also reaches a lot of other people, like local government, business, and of course our school policy. Another special feature within our project is the ambassador program, in which students will take on the role of frontrunner within this program. An elite of students who will evaluate, create and debate about all things relevant in Europe and the program. We expect this program to have a significant impact on all organisations involved. We will work together which will have impact on our staff, and local government. We will involve our students, which will have a large impact on them as well. They will learn to work together and to research, be critical, and ask questions. In the end, we want to prepare motivated students with the necessary tools to do well in their further education. We feel that this program can really add to these competences. We have a lot of experience in the organisation of programs, and we feel that for the coming years, we can absolutely create a great program which contains all the opportunities for over a thousand European pupils to learn, work together, and to grow as people. Ultimately, we are convinced this program will make sure that our collective organisations will benefit from this greatly.
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