Visibility of eTwinning Projects Group Newsletter no. 5 - July 2015 - Page 70

Visibility of eTwinning Projects Group July 2015 Newsletter -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------eTwinning for a change! by Nieves Méndez Change and innovation are words so often heard and repeated in educational settings nowadays and the reason is not difficult to understand: educational systems are almost desperately trying to catch up with a society on the move – not always really successfully, though. In the last decades, we have witnessed the transformation of family patterns, the swift rise of mass media influence on people's lives and, above all, the birth of new ways of accessing information and knowledge, which undoubtedly results in a totally different kind of pupil attending our classes. However, have the teachers changed in the same way? As far as I am concerned, I can still see a dangerous gap between the model of teacher in service these days – educated according to methods and principles no longer suitable – and the students to whom our lessons are addressed. That is why a profound change is urgently needed. Without this change it is not easy to achieve the goals of any modern educational system. The question that might immediately arise is how to do it. First of all, we have to be aware of the real picture. Paradoxically, in a world in which children and teenagers have all the information they might need at hand – ready to be keyed into any connected device – the role of the teacher is now more important than ever. Whereas they have fast and easy access to data, they sometimes lack basic personal resources to make good use of all the information they are flooded with; our students are so often deficient in motivation, self-esteem, selfconfidence and personal goals, being these some of the most important reasons for failure and, eventually, dropping out. From my point of view, it is a must for teachers to provide students with what they really need to be successful in life: the chance to develop competences to become happy responsible citizens. Easier said than done, of course. But here is where eTwinning comes into scene. eTwinning provides a proper well-defined frame to update our methodology in a simple yet an efficient way. classro