Transnational meetings report

Evaluation Report

SCHOOL YEAR 2016-2017

TRANSNATIONAL MEETING, BARCELONA

The first transnational meeting planned in Tarsus, Turkey was swap because the declaration of state of emergency in Turkey and opposition of school councils to send teachers close to Syrian border or direct Foreign Affair Ministries ban to travel to Turkey to their citizens. The initial evaluation of the project and comparison of school calendars and target students (English skills, ages, possibilities to collaborate in-between learning activities’ meetings) made us decide to advance the fine tuning of activities and writing of lesson plans.

All of the goals of the order of the day were all reach, and the plan of initial activities and calendar of exchanges was agreed. The rules of the game and general guidelines were set.

Icebreaking and teambuilding activities, and social program were successful and the team of coordinators got very well together. A short training on gamification and storytelling techniques was provided by an expert to make sure every coordinator was aware of the methodology and the goals of the project, and the documentation uploaded in the project website, available for the general public.

One of the main risks, the integration of the new members of the team, was definitely overcame.

 

TRANSNATIONAL MEETING POLAND. Mid-term evaluation.

The evaluation report written in the transnational meeting of Poland we found that the goals of the application had all been met, and new ideas and approaches came from experience. All of the learning outcomes planned for the first year of the project were met, and the reach of new skills for the team of teachers. The students and teachers participated actively in the activities and many new proposals came from experience. The collaboration between teachers and students started new and motivating ties among the whole team. The project is running smoothly and the schools will decide to launch a new partnership to deepen into new aspects of learning arising in the development of the activities.

As a bonus we will offer a downloadable brochure including our original evaluation forms that can be used by other projects just mentioning our authory.

 

TRANSNATIONAL MEETING GREECE. Kick-off meeting school year 2017-18

The evaluation report written in the transnational meeting of Greece we found that the goals of the application and timeline had all been met, and new ideas and approaches came from experience. Some fine tuning of learning activities was needed to replace those planned to take place in Turkey. Teachers were enthusiastic about the use of mobile technology as support for outdoor activities and decided to write the application for a new Erasmus+ KA229 project to deepen into augmented reality and 3D printing as learning strategies.

TRANSNATIONAL MEETING IN SLIEMA, MALTA

A in-depth revision of project and evaluation evidences was held. All of the project’s objectives were reached, and some spinoffs like introduction of mobile technology came out, and were assessed as preparations for the next project. Coordinators agreed to transfer knowledge to their own schools, educational communities and beyond, like teacher’s training associations or national/regional advisors. Contacts for castle’s preservation societies/organizations have been offered for networking. Twinspace will remain open for more contributions, and will apply for a quality label in the future. All of the partners are open for private student exchanges. A first draft of final report was agreed to be finished including all of the project’s coordinators, and organisation of transnational meeting was assessed as very good.

OUTCOMES ACCORDING TO THE APPLICATION

They are the outcomes as states the application form:

MAIN UNTANGIBLE OUTCOMES:

– To develop the use of gamification and storytelling in CLIL and foreign language classes as learning aid and motivator for pupils.

– To experience approaches to teambuilding and group dynamics from very diverse teaching and cultural backgrounds.

– Better pupil’s performance in key competences and lifelong skills through more efficient teaching approaches.

– Reduction of early leaving by increasing pupil’s motivation

TEACHERS’ SECONDARY UNTANGIBLE OUTCOMES:

– Impulse of high-standard innovative teaching approaches as response to increasing complexity and diversity of the students

– To learn about the different cultures of the partner regions in the project; differences and similarities through the research on local folklore, legends and storytelling techniques.

– To collaborate in an international background to obtain the best results

– To provide professional development and to improve teachers’ understanding of successful practice; and having access to a wider range of materials shared with the partner schools;

– To experience the partner countries’ different teaching styles, to observe differences among school curricula of English as foreign language and the share of good practise

– To encourage teachers to improve their skills in English and ICT

– To coordinate the development of the activity, managing effectively pupil’s behaviour from different countries.

PUPIL’S SECONDARY UNTANGIBLE OUTCOMES:

– To encourage pupils to improve their skills in English and ICTs

– To have initiative, collaborate, understand and communicate among international teams and fellows using English and non-verbal strategies to interact and to reach the objectives of the different stages of the game.

– To learn about the different cultures of the partner regions in the project; differences and similarities through the research on local folklore, legends and storytelling techniques.

– To first-hand experience a different country school and the staying in a foreign family to increase their EU citizenship awareness

– To empower them to play in public using a foreign language and to overcome learned helplessness for a growth mindset

PUPIL’S LEARNING OUTCOMES ACCORDING TO KEY COMPETENCES.

(from https://ec.europa.eu/education/policy/school/competences_en) (4)

Note: the EU key competences are under review right now and might need revision in case of transfer to classrooms in the future.

  • 1. Communicating in a mother tongue: ability to express and interpret concepts, thoughts, feelings, facts and opinions both orally and in writing.

This competence is not the focus of the project, but sometimes the pupils of the same country were teamed together. Some schools created a blog to show the experience to a wider audience.

  • 2. Communicating in a foreign language: as above, but includes mediation skills (i.e. summarising, paraphrasing, interpreting or translating) and intercultural understanding.

Communication in English, and learning is improved through a playful approach. As pupils have no reason to fear failure as it happens in tests, assignments…, language fluency comes naturally. International teaming is great to learn how to collaborate and overcome the language and culture barrier. Whenever native or bilingual speakers are involved in teams, they support their fellows and realize the existence of the language barrier. They become more understanding of people struggling with language low skills.

  • 3. Mathematical, scientific and technological competence: sound mastery of numeracy, an understanding of the natural world and an ability to apply knowledge and technology to perceived human needs (such as medicine, transport or communication).

Many of the quizzes for the game are based on mathematics and science.

  • 4. Digital competence: confident and critical usage of information and communications technology for work, leisure and communication.

The use of Kahoot! quizzes and presentations, and videoconferences or instant messaging improves the experience of ICTs in the classroom. They analyzed different resources and composed  presentations using ICTs.

  • 5. Learning to learn: ability to effectively manage one’s own learning, either individually or in groups.

The pupils had to interact and solve complex situations, like

  • 6. Social and civic competences: ability to participate effectively and constructively in one’s social and working life and engage in active and democratic participation, especially in increasingly diverse societies.

In most cases they overcame their shyness and introduced themselves, their school, country and educational system using English in front of a large international audience. The joint on-site evaluation of the development of the activities, and the democratic take of decisions concerning the planning of the game and the rules ensured the participation on decisions of all of the pupils involved in the project.

  • 7. Sense of initiative and entrepreneurship: ability to turn ideas into action through creativity, innovation and risk taking as well as ability to plan and manage projects.

Art activities, playing of the game and study visits were very good to practise decision taking skills.

  • 8. Cultural awareness and expression: ability to appreciate the creative importance of ideas, experiences and emotions in a range of media such as music, literature and visual and performing arts.

Creative activities like the design of the illustrations of the book, the selection of legends related to local castles, the development of the common legend, dance or music playing improved the awareness of the many points in common of the culture of the six partner school’s countries. The play in the castles and study visits to cultural heritage sites improved the awareness.

 

FINAL EVALUATION

 

We have early evidence of improvement of foreign language marks among participating students, motivation for learning languages among non-involved students and achievement of official certifications in advanced English among non-language teachers. Schools have started to try gamification in regular classrooms. Relationship among schools, advisory boards of regional/national educational authorities and inspections, and societies of preservation of castles has been enhanced too. A new application for a KA229 project has been released to deepen into Augmented Reality and 3D printing as aids for foreign language teaching. A sample of Europass skills certifications for students and teachers can be downloaded here.

 

We aim to get more evidences of success in the mid and long term, and update this website with results.

 

Successful use of innovative strategies:

All of partner’s schools share the need to improve performance on key subjects like maths, science and literacy on different degree. Gamification has been tested and validated through our project as a very successful strategy to improve motivation towards any curricular subject, and subjects using CLIL (Contents and Language integrated Learning) methodology benefited too, and its use is extending among teachers of partner schools, earning a reputation as attractive learning strategy. Knowledge acquisition and retention benefit too from active, student-centered methodologies.

Some partner schools have already  started to implement lesson units based on Augmented Reality and gamification strategies using Metaverse and Kahoot! platforms.  We have early evidence of success: general improvement of motivation and performance among students, and better marks. We expect on the mid-term to extend the experience to more subjects and teachers, and to improve both teacher and student’s digital competences, and to implement project’s outcomes in long-term curriculum development.

 

Improved soft and language skills:

Host families, students, teachers and schools report on evaluation improvement of soft skills, better awareness of shared European traditions, cultural common background and enhanced peer collaboration from international experience. ICT and foreign language skills were improved too from interactions with international partners and use of digital technologies for remote contacts or coordination on short term. We expect mid-term openness to develop international relationships, career choices and even business networking among hosting families.

 

Better digital skills:

Digital skills among teachers and students have been increased from peer learning and implementation of augmented reality, gamified and serious games strategies based on Kahoot and Metaverse platforms. Moodle and Google Drive were used to support remote collaboration as complement of eTwinning, and both teachers and students benefit from learnings in an international setting, and exchange of good practise. In mid-term we expect to extend the use of gamified platforms to more curricular subjects.

 

Improved retention of staff:

Spain, Turkey, Greece and Poland applied for a new Erasmus+ KA229 project, Augmented Age of Inventions and Discoveries. Spain reports all the teachers involved in CLIL Heroes projects aim to stay in the school to launch the next project.

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