The partnership has existed since October 2007. We have a common project titled "Famous legends", recreating the unique and ancient myths and legends from various countries. These are exchanged using the English language. A student sets these stories in appealing manga style drawings. The younger children colour the drawings, audio files are produced using free podcasting software from the internet by Primary age pupils on the computer and animated slideshows can arise.
This partnership was established on the eTwinning portal and has proved very successful.
Children research and collect the legends and change them into a new and younger style. Interest in older and almost forgotten legends will be reawakened. Students learn more about their own country and its legends and about other countries and their legends. The project will provide a context and an audience for all participants while the opportunity to compare and contrast important similarities in the traditional cultural messages.
Through joint international activities and the manufacture of creative, media rich Legends the children's interest and increased understanding of each other's language and cultures will be enhanced.
Children flourish in this project both in their artistic as well as their linguistic profile. The cultural exchange through the use of ICT has stimulated and motivated the children; links between European cultures have also been forged and friendships formed. It will create exciting new opportunities in the interpretation and reinforcement of key objectives in many areas of the formal curriculum and more importantly outside the formal curriculum.
The exchange of materials and student created content, which is central to this project, offers real opportunities to develop social skills, self-confidence, teamwork, empathy for others, a sense of belonging within the European dimension and a real chance for self-discovery.
Through these activities the students research and discuss the vocabulary and culture of the partner’s country and counter stereotyping. As the partners are also the audience and colleagues the motivation is high and the standard of work produced, particularly in their own language skills, is improved and more focused. We have also involved parents at almost all sides of this partnership to support the actions and so widen the impact to our whole school communities.
Two exchange visits took place. The exchange of visits reinforced and strengthened the understanding and depth of the friendships the children have tentatively started to form on the visits to the Scottish school and the German school.
The thematic focus is researching each of the partners own social culture, contextualised through the Myths and Legends of past times. The children then have to exchange these which open them up to other cultures and viewpoints including the messages behind the Legends. Through the development and practice of traditional artistic skills set in a modern artistic expression, the creative retelling of each others Myths and Legends develops understanding and bonds.
Modern electronic communication is used to exchange the materials, engaging children in developing creative communication skills essential to their future needs. Creative and innovative ICT is used to build the audio files in different languages as well as English and in different electronic formats of presentation.
Language skills are improved and accuracy in the children’s own language is raised through their increased sense of audience. The pupils involved in the Scottish end of the project now understand some basic German phrases as the second language available in formal classes is only French. Wider school community participation by parents including those with second language skills assists with school ethos and community cohesion.
Most importantly, this project has provided for the pupils directly and intimately involved the context to develop the ‘Soft Skills’ so necessary for future employment, including self confidence, European and global citizenship, team working skills both within and beyond their own peer group and a sense of belonging to a wider society.