Visibility of eTwinning Projects Group Newsletter no. 5 - July 2015 - Page 73

Visibility of eTwinning Projects Group July 2015 Newsletter -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Now, I could not think of another eTwinning project without the families’ collaboration to help their children and the school to grow up together. Then… let us cooperate together! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Hurrayyy! eTwinning goes national! by Esen Sandiraz I am a teacher of English and European Projects Head Coordinator at Toros College in Mersin, Turkey. I have been working with eTwinning projects for about 6 years. I am eTwinning projects and ITEC project teacher trainer in my country. I would like to tell you about my eTwinning National Project “İlden İle eTwinning’”. When I heard that eTwinning decided to run a pilot and open the platform to national projects to encourage collaboration of teachers and students from the same country, I got really pleased, phoned my colleague Adil Tuğyan, who is one of the most experienced Turkish eTwinners, and in a short time we decided to start a brand new national project together. We were aware of the fact that new eTwinners and less experienced teachers who don’t speak a second language will take advantage of this new opportunity because it would give them the possibility to have an idea about collaborative learning and the opportunity to use eTwinning platform in their own language. Our project was about getting to know each other’s culture, historical places, local cuisine, and daily lives in different cities of Turkey. There were more than 50 participating schools in this project. We sent a mascot, a teddy bear, by post, that is travelling from one participating school to another. The mascot stayed a week in each city and in each school. Teddy participated in lessons with the pupils, visited students’ homes, had spare time activities and tried to get information about the city. During the visit, students took photos and videos, prepared slideshows, joined online lessons, used ICT tools, wrote down what he/she experienced and shared with other partner school students. The subject and the aim of the project were closely connected with the school curriculum and our school education programme. The pupils improved their level of English, Turkish, maths, ICT skills etc. thanks to the project - mainly the communication skills. The project is an example of innovative way of Language Teaching,too. Using a mascot motivated pupils and increased interest in language learning. Pupils and teachers developed ICT skills and improved their understanding of working together. The project taught tolerance and developed creative thinking. Our project “İlden İle eTwinning” is a crosscurricular project housing a lot of pedagogical and educational aspects within: It was the first national eTwinning project consisting of 50 schools from different cities in Turkey. It had project and inquiry based learning styles because during the project class activities students created their own learnings by carrying out the activities individually and in teams. They seached for information and refined it and then reflected their outcomes to others for inspiration. It had technology entegrated with the project activities in which students developed their ICT skills. It had a very well organized communication networks through internet and face to face. It had a very well balanced collaboration among the partners in terms of sharing the workload and responsibilities. It had clearly visible outcomes and products. It had the power to flip the classroom with our online classes with our partner school. It had joy and excitement while the students were waiting for Teddy to visit their ͍