THE INITIATIVE PROMOTER’S PERSPECTIVE
Theoretical High School “Mihail Kogãlniceanu” Vaslui is now searching new modalities to increase pupils motivation to learn French and Spanish, especially as, following a needs analysis, there are misapprehensions concerning the utility of learning French and Spanish; this is a tendency generated in part by Romanian medias, also that one of the society to promote the anglicized language and to prefer an kind of superficial learning of English. Meanwhile, the communication skills, the sociocultural, the linguistic direct interaction of pupils of bilingual classes-French, English and Spanish, must be strengthen so that they reach the level of competence established for their specialization in the Common Frame of Reference for Languages, in the formal curriculum and conforming to the specifications of the bilingual baccalaureate. In the past 5 years,10% of High school's graduates choose to study Architecture and connected specialities in Universities;5% of graduates, leaving the country, work in Architecture, Constructions and connected fields; for this purpose, they all needed special courses of Architecture and languages that school didn't provide them, unfortunately. New skills acquired by teachers after Comenius training courses (there were twelve training grants the past ten years) find in the new project an opportunity to apply new methods, processes and procedures for teaching and an opportunity for innovation in teaching languages. There are also new competencies-in architecture, in literature and translation, in media, in computer special software that this project will implement. Theoretical High School “Mihail Kogălniceanu” has also the experience of coordination and the authority of implementing a project of this magnitude and complexity: it is the only institution in Romania which has five times received the European Label of the European Commission in 2002-04-06(twice)and 2009.
The main objective of the project is to promote the intercultural European education focused on architecture, through the main key competencies: the communication in foreign languages, the digital competencies, the sense of initiative and entrepreneurship and the cultural awareness and expression. The specific objectives are to promote innovation in teaching languages through Architecture and to promote the creativity, the competitiveness, the growth of an entrepreneurial spirit.
The first stage of implementation consists in the organization of the expanded project teams of teachers and students, in the participating institutions. There are recruited pupils and teachers of languages, ICT, design. The coordinator provides training for teachers to use special graphic software. The teachers train the pupils, next. In the second stage, coordinator trains the teachers to implement architectural competencies and connections with other fields. The third stage implements video-operating competencies. In the fourth stage, initial teams are divided in workgroups: the history of architecture, the 2D-3D design, Encyclopaedia of architecture, Literature&Architecture, Filming ones. Every group focuses on its specific products. In the fifth stage, a contest on the house and the city of the future is organized. Dissemination, evaluation and feed-back activities are included in every stage of the project and after project.
The strategy of Evaluation of the project includes the following monthly steps or special events (reunions, launching project products), evaluating:
- The degree of achievement of project goals
- The increment of the following skills:
a) language proficiency
b) sociocultural competencies
c) competence in the use of new technologies
d) architectural skills
- The growth of motivation for language learning
- The quality of project products
- The partnership
- The project meetings
- The European citizenship
- The project management
- The impact of the project
1) August 2011 - The website of the project, with special evaluation tools – http://www.architeaching.ro visitors can log in with username and password guest ;
2) September 2011 - Expanded project teams (teachers+pupils) after general selection tests, in all the institutions involved;
3) September 2011- 3 course supports made by the coordinator to train teachers in: a) using special software; b) building
architecture competencies; c) filming and mounting documentaries and TV shows;
4) September-October 2011 - Project reunion-Romania: 1-st training course for teachers, 30 items of evaluation for special soft
using competencies, evaluation of the reunion;
5) October 2011 1st training course in partners schools, for students and teachers; 20 items of evaluation put on the
6) November 2011 - 2nd training course for teachers-implementing architecture competencies&connections with several fields (national&European specific, history, languages, literature); 6 tutorials & 60 evaluation items on the website; evaluation ;
7) Dec.2011- Jan.2012- 2nd training course in architecture competencies, in schools; 5 themes of study and 40 evaluation
items put on the website of the project;
8) February-March-April 2012 - special workgroups of the project, in every partner institution - group History of Architecture, group Encyclopaedia ,group 2D-3D graphics; group Literature&Architecture; group Documentary films&TV; working tasks and timing division;
9) April 2012 - Project reunion-Portugal: 3rd training course on audio-video-editing competencies; 5 tutorials and 20
evaluation items put on the website; evaluation of the meeting;
10) April 2012 - 3rd training course on audio-video-editing competencies in schools; 4 themes and 50 items to
evaluate new competencies on the website;
11) May 2012 - 5 themes of study on national architecture with 2D-3D illustration structured in periods-Antiquity, Middle Age,XVIII-IXth,XX-XXIth made by Workgroups History&2D-3D in each school and published on website;
12) June 2012 - Project meeting-Cyprus; presentation and evaluation of the papers of Workgroups History &2D-3D; evaluation of the website activity; strategy of Encyclopaedia group; evaluation of the meeting;
13) July-August 2012 - Evaluation of the 1st year of the project; 2nd improved version of the website; press conference,
documentary and TV show made by Documentary&TV Workgroup;
14) September-October 2012 - Newly re-builted project teams; 2 tests for admission in project teams; 3 training courses
(architecture, soft and filming) and evaluation for the new members;
15) Sept.-Oct.2012- Project reunion-Poland; presentations and quality evaluations of products of Workgroup Literature&Architecture;25 items/institution on website - evaluation of new linguistic&cultural competencies; evaluation of meeting;
16) November 2012 - Conjunct study of Workgroup Literature&Architecture with Internet and multimedia versions about the presence of architecture in national literature: 30 texts/institution with translations in English, French, Spanish &one analytic essay for each text;
17) Dec.2012- Febr.2013 Encyclopaedia of Architecture-architectural terms, definitions, equivalencies in all languages of the project,2D-3Dsimulations in 3 versions: paper, multimedia&internet; works on History of National Architecture in European context in every institution;
18) March 2013 - Project reunion in Italy; evaluation of Encyclopaedia and of History of Architecture; shooting of one documentary film and one tv show of the project; evaluation of the products and on the meeting;
19) April-May 2013 The Contest "House&city of the future" in the partner institutions: 4-5 essays&visual simulations for
each institution; evaluation of the International Jury;
20) June 2013 - Project reunion in Spain - presentations of portfolios and awarding ceremony of the Contest "House&city of the future";press conference, TV show and official presentations of all products of the project. Evaluation of reunion;
21) July 2013 Final evaluation on the website and paper; final reports (coordinator and partners); dissemination and
follow-up of the products of the project.
The impact of the project is planned as follows:
a. on the participants - pupils and teachers
- Positive change of attitude towards language learning: the acquisition of a rich vocabulary of architectural terms,
their use in a collaborative environment, great ease of speaking, linguistic initiative and continuation of activities in the field of Architecture;
- An open attitude towards the new methods and innovative processes of language learning: visible progress in oral and
written participation in lessons with the use of new information studied during the project; choice of bilingual classes in
high school and languages, architecture and design related fields in higher education;
- A growing contribution to the creation of cultural values enhancing talents and abilities;
- Better career orientation in jobs of constructions and design;
b. the entire staff of all institutions involved in the partnership -
- Better knowledge of the common European area, especially of the concrete, architectural, space; the mutual
understanding will increase at the levels of architecture, culture and literature;
- An openness to the study of languages;
c. the educational community at the institutional level
- A positive influence due to educational innovation promoted by the project, especially the proposed language activities
that require the involvement of design, IT creation, filming;
- Enrichment of the educational curricula - by the possibility of the introduction of optional subjects connected with the
project: history and civilization of a linguistic and cultural space, design, architecture or extensions for foreign languages
d. on the community - local, national, international -
- The involvement of various institutions and specialists in the project: Town halls, institutes of architecture/ officials,
- Increasing cooperation in the production of cultural values, to support schools and language learning, in terms of cultural
knowledge and initiatives;
e. European and global level
- A better image and understanding of educational systems in Europe and adoption of best educational practices;
- Encouragement of innovation in teaching by using innovative experiences of the project;
- Changing the philosophy of teaching language learning, giving priority to the introduction of a new vision built on strengthening the link between society and school.
We needed a supplementary confirmation of the originality of the theme, of the methods and of the procedures we are using in this project. We also applied 8 times and got this certificate 5 times – once even on the first place, since its foundation in Romania, in 2002, starting with the first edition. So we can say it’s a kind of tradition and a wish of recognition.
Methodology for applying for the European Language Label: we realize a portfolio composed by our main products which were made in the first months of the project and we complete the specific forms for this selection.
We announced in a press conference this certificate and, since then, we use this mark on all our products. Our partners, at their turn, use the mark of European Label awards and mention the existence of this extra-evaluation certificate.
Benefits for the initiative having received the ELL: recognition of the high level of quality for the project and for its activities and products.
Impact of the initiative following the awarding of the ELL: more participants involved in the project, more initiative, more quality in the activities and in the products that are obtained.
Advices on how to plan and develop quality language learning initiatives that can successfully apply for the ELL: the initiatives must be original, well justified, with a solid portfolio of products, offering solutions for unfavoured categories or for the isolated institutions (rural, institutions places in disadvantaged economic areas).
Advices on how to exploit the awarded ELL initiatives: Press conferences, TV shows, didactic meetings for spreading the project results, together with the other partners, project promotion on the web groups.
THE NELLIP NETWORK’S PERSPECTIVE
The project is consistent with the current policies. It is focused on learning mobilities, it aims at improving employment-related languages skills, it involves teaching / learning methodologies specific to VET, it includes less-widely used languages (Romanian Latvian, Greek, Polish) and a cultural dimension in a professional field (work relationships in a multicultural team).
The project is consistent with the European, National and yearly priorities.
It provides added value, it motivates the students and the teachers to improve their language skills, it is original and creative.
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