Strategic Partnership (School exchange)
Period: 1. 9. 2019 – 31. 8. 2021
Project number: 2019-1-CZ01-KA229-061189_1
- Czech Republic – Střední průmyslová škola chemická Pardubice
- Italy – I.I.S. VIA EMERY 97 (ex ITC Calamandrei, ex IPS Stendhal)
- Lithuania – Ignalinos r. Duksto mokykla
- Latvia – Malpils novada vidusskola
- Poland – Zespol Szkol Spolecznych Fundacji Edukacji „Fabryczna 10“ w Bialymstoku
- Spain – IES Virgen de Guadalupe
The project, “Every Drop Counts”, as the name says, deals with “water” as an essential part of life on our planet.
We often hear in the media about droughts and necessary changes in water management in the near future. How should we deal with this information? During this two-year international project, we will certainly gain not only important knowledge, but also appropriate attitudes and values for the future of life. As the climate changes are becoming a reality, a close cooperation between all European countries will become a necessity and we hope we will be better prepared for that.
During this project, each partner school will look at water from a different angle – from water resources protection that ensures quality drinking water, to historical aspects of water management in the past, to chemical-biological analyses in laboratories. Throughout the two years, we will visit places that are close to the project topic – ponds, lakes, water courses, locks, water reservoirs, hydroelectric power plants, drinking water treatment plants and waste water treatment plants. We will observe aquatic microorganisms under a microscope, we will follow the chosen natural localities, study literature, and organize lectures and workshops.
During international meetings, we will focus not only on science, but also on sport and mutual learning about the culture and history of each partner country. In Caceres, Spain, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, we will learn about the history of drinking water distribution in the city and try to create an audio guide for tourists. In Latvia, we will look at the economic aspects of water management and visit a hydroelectric power plant.
In Bialystok, Poland, we will see the water from a biological and recreational point of view, visit a nature reserve and watch life in a drop of water.
We will also invite our foreign partners to the Czech Republic and students as tour guides will introduce the city of Pardubice. We will take our guests to school labs and organize a boat trip along the Opatovický Canal – an ingenious water work of our ancestors, which has its significance even in present times.
In Rome, Italy, our partners will show us the versatile use of the Tiber River; a source of drinking water, a source of irrigation, an important sea route and a strategic trading venue.
The last international meeting awaits us in Lithuania, where we will find out a lot about the local mineral springs and their use and learn about interesting folk traditions.
Each international meeting will be attended by at least four students and two teachers.
The project also includes innovative approaches to teaching and learning. We want to create discussion circles, as well as collaborative student teams, in which students will become experts on a chosen issue and will play the role of mentors to their peers. Through the interesting topic of water, we want to encourage students not only to learn new things and establish a functional cooperation with foreign partners, but also to engage in environmental protection, especially protection of water resources, which must be preserved for future generations regardless of state borders.
During the project, we will provide equal opportunities for students to participate in international meetings. The participation of our students does not depend on their economic and social situation, as all accommodation and travel expenses are covered by the project budget. We are looking for enthusiastic students who are interested in biology, ecology, environmental protection, and eventually in history; students who like to learn new things, want to meet new people and practice English.
Short-term joint staff training event at Střední průmyslová škola chemická Pardubice in the Czech Republic, from 15th to 19th October 2019.
C1: We need to start now to create the future
The programme started on 15th October with socializing, getting to know each other and informal discussions. On 16th October, the program was opened with an official welcoming of the partners by the representatives of the host school. A presentation about the project work by Věra Poláková followed. After presentations about all the participating schools, the teachers shared their experience with activities connected with the project topic. They discussed active learning methods used in their classes and their possible application in local activities and events of the EDC project.
After lunch, a lecturer, Ms. Vendula Lensmith, held a workshop about active learning methods, and the teachers, divided into mixed-international groups, used the methods practically. Teachers were also given teaching materials and worksheets which they could share with other teachers of their school and use them for their local project activities.
In the afternoon, the teachers had a study-visit in Hradec Králové – Hučák, a water power plant; they learned about its history and the possibilities of using the gained information for future project activities.
On the next day, all the teachers joined a lecture by Francisco Torrado Cano, who spoke about the standardization of communication, and a lecture by Livija Mukane, who spoke about the ways to report about project activities and the importance of school websites. Teachers then discussed project activities, marketing materials and methods of effective cooperation among involved partners schools. Partners’ presentations about the planned activities in partner schools followed. In the afternoon, they all visited Zelená hora near the town of Žďár nad Sázavou, taking guided tours to the Castle and the Pilgrimage Church of St. John of Nepomuk at Zelená Hora, the site of the UNESCO Heritage List. They were acquainted with modern ways of presenting historical and scientific facts in a unique museum exposition. The Museum of the New Generation in Žďár holds the Živa award for the most creative museum in Central Europe. The teachers also learned about the importance of clever water-management in the past for the development of the region in the future.
On 18th October, the programme started with a lecture by a geologist, Mr. Marek Čáslavský, who introduced the topic of water and its role in the landscape. The teachers learned about how to use scientific information in the school project activities and were given useful ideas of what to focus on while working with students.
The program continued with a workshop by Věra Brachetková about active teaching methods, student-centred teaching approaches, peer-learning and peer-teaching. She introduced the guide for teachers, which contains the ideas that will be used and developed by all partners during the whole project. The teachers received some knowledge of several useful techniques, which they could integrate into their teaching. They also learned how to prepare attractive teaching materials and how to create collaborative learning groups. In a practical workshop, they focused on the human carbon-footprint and water-footprint, and they tried using several modern methods to teach about this topic.
At the informal sessions, during several coffee breaks, the participants had a chance to meet with other teachers of the host school. The breaks were also used for a little research. As the project topic is “water”, the present teachers were offered bottled and tap water. They were asked which option they had chosen and what their preferences are in a wider context of sustainable development.
After a final discussion, the training finished with the meeting evaluation and Pardubice sightseeing.
On 19th October, the participants departed, all with fresh ideas for the project activities in the following period, methods for motivating students and methods for effective dissemination of the project.
Short-term exchange of groups of pupils at IES Virgen de Guadalupe in Caceres, Spain, 16–21 February 2020
C2: Future belongs to all of us
In Spain we learned a lot of new things and we consider the most interesting of all the old town of Caceres, the way how the local people got, kept and stored water. The Spanish cultural and religion feasts were also very interesting as we witnessed the beginning of the religious festival of pre-Easter carnival in the city centre.
One of the most impressive things was the fact that Caceres is not like most of the other historical cities built near any river or on the river but they still could get water for living and even watering their beautiful gardens. The guide showed us the cisterns under houses in the old town and the ways how they collected the water and stored it.
We really enjoyed the activities which the Spanish hosting team prepared for us. Our team came to conclusion that the most enjoyable and funniest activities were on Monday when we were doing the ice breaking activities. We also really liked attitude from both teachers and students. And last but not least we were very excited by the beautiful Spanish landscape.
Students presentation EDC Spain-PDF_