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First Comenius Meeting

    European Project "Introducing migrant children into and to the European community"

    Hurray - Hurray, our project got approved by the European Comenius Committee!!! At the end of July 2011, our school found out that our application for the above mentioned project got approved. Our partners from Germany Munich, Denmark Alderslyst, Finland Kuopio, Spain Ceuta, Belgium Antwerp, and our school, started working for the first meeting in Germany where we had the chance to meet the working team, the German school and plan the next activities directly involved with the project and application.

    Our projects title is: Introducing migrant children into and to the European Community.

    Our main objective is to help migrant children feel a part of our European family.

    Countries taking part are: Denmark- being the coordinating country, Cyprus, Belgium, Spain, Germany and Finland. The project will work with the whole school, but focusing on the age group of 03-15, around 50 children directly involved.

    Activities planned:

1)Competition in finding a mascot for each school.

2)Excursions and visits of our pupils in the town they live now  to the municipality, the parliament etc.

3)The creation of a dictionary with essential phrases.

4)The organization of country weeks with traditional dances, songs, culinary etc.

5)Transformation of a fairy-tale or a legend into a puzzle.

    We plan to execute six project meetings a year (September, November, January, March, May and June). During the project meetings we will make the planning of the next period of the project and evaluate the previous. The project has the following mobilities and themes:

a)Germany, September 2011 will be about presenting your class and your school.

b)Belgium, November 2011 will be about presenting your town, your municipality, your local museum etc.

c)Cyprus, January 2012 will be about presenting your country and its traditions.

d)Denmark, March 2012 family ties, the children and their family.

e)Finland, May 2012 legends, fairy-tales and myths from your country of origin.

f)Spain, June 2012 will be about language and food.

g)Germany, November 2012 traditional songs and dances.

h)Cyprus, January 2013 all about Democracy.

i)Spain, April 2013 pupils evaluation.

f)Denmark, June 2013 projects evaluation.

    The project is not only for the migrant children, our own ethnic children will also learn a lot about citizenship.

    We believe that our project is an important part of the long term integration of migrant pupils and their families. In order to make the integration successful, it is very important that our new citizens feel that they are a part of our society. They must feel that they are appreciated, and that they are important to the democratic process in different European countries. The relatively new problem of xenophobia in Europe makes this project very important so that the future generations of our continent will not face this ugly problem. We plan to build small bridges of understanding and accepting those of other cultures, those who might be so different but at the same time so similar to us. These bridges will help our children to become more multicultural and open-minded so that our future European family will not have to face these problems to this extent any more.

    The schools involved in this project all experience the challenges when it comes to integration of migrant pupils. With this project we want to share "best practice" and give each other new inspiration on how to deal with teaching and helping migrant pupils. The project activities all support our aim of the project.  We live in a globalize world and in the future we must expect our workplace to be not only in our own country, since the whole world is open to us. More and more students decide to go abroad and study in order to achieve knowledge and experience. We believe that it is important to make our children prepared for this by teaching them about other countries, but also by making them active citizens of their “own country”. Due to the fact that our project is addressed to children of 3-15 years we have decided to approach the problem and achieve our goals through activities that are reachable, practical, and can be carried out in the set timetable and the limited means of a public or a private comprehensive school.

 

    Concrete objectives of the partnership that will help migrant children to:

• understand that the country they are living now is actually their own,

• have a smoother integration,

• build pupils’ confidence and self esteem,

• give pupils’ a sense of pride,

• help children to empathize with those of other cultures,

• introduce pupils to other European languages and improve their linguistic skills,

• share and exchange experience regarding activities education of this particular group of students in other European countries.

    Activities for the pupils

• Diary: each country has his own mascot that travels between the participating countries. During his stay he will participate with the children during several activities. Every activity will be written down in a personal diary (pictures included). In each country he’ll receive a special accessory. This accessory travels alongside the mascot from country to country.

• Recipe book ( typical for every country involved) Each class makes a typical dish from his own country. The preparing of the meal will be documented by text and illustrated with pictures, afterwards the dishes will be combined into a recipe book.

• DVD/Video (migrant children promote the city they live in and belong too)

• Creation of a dictionary

• Puzzle about a fairy tale (a fairy tale/legend from the own country).

    Subjects and problems we intend to address in the project

    Our project is addressing pupils between the ages of 3-15 years. With this project we work towards better integration of our migrant pupils and their families. We want to provide them with the possibility to become active members of the local society where they live.

    We will achieve our objectives by continuously sharing best practice among the teachers involved in the project. During these visits different workshops which focus on how the partner school works with the core of the project integration of migrant pupils and active citizenship will be organized. Alongside these project meetings different teaching strategies will be carried out by teachers from the partners' schools. The evaluation of these teaching strategies will be published at the final project meeting in Denmark.

    It is important that the participants of the project experience new ways of practicing and planning their work. We are taking part in this project with the ambition to teach and inspire each other.