Tendring Technology College is an 11-18 mixed comprehensive on a split site.
To challenge students’ perceptions of migration and other global issues by developing projects and links with overseas schools.
The school had gained Expert Centre status under the Global Learning Programme in 2016 followed by accreditation of a “Quality Label” by the British Council for the e-Twinning project. The school had also been involved in a PenPal exchange with a school in Senegal.
The funding for an Erasmus+ project was rejected so the focus was on a collaborative e-Twinning project “Places and their stories” with schools in Germany, Portugal and Turkey. Students from the three partner schools focused on finding similarities and differences between their cultures. The second project was “Through the lens” with the school in Senegal involving Year 7 & 8 pupils. The aim was to produce a collection of photographs of everyday life, at home and school, with an accompanying story. Both projects were slotted into the normal Geography curriculum as additional ‘project’ work.
Funding was successfully secured for the ERASMUS+ project “Every child matters”, an 18 month partnership with four schools in Turkey, Greece, Italy and Portugal. The theme was the effect refugee status has on a child’s education. Teachers from ICT, English, Drama, Music and PSHE were also involved. Two transnational meetings in Italy and Greece were each attended by teachers accompanied by four students.
The collaboration with Senegal continued with a different class and a Year 8 class entered an e-Twinning project with two schools in Germany and a school in Portugal. The theme was global challenges which fitted well with the Year 8 Population topic.
The ERASMUS+ project continued; TTC hosted schools twice allowing more students to become involved. With the success of e-Twinning, another year of collaboration was planned with a Year 8 class.
Project surveys, student feedback
The e-Twinning projects were a great success, and four of them were awarded the European Quality Label. Three of them were voted best national projects and two of them also won best in the 11-18 category. Through the ERASMUS+ project, students developed skills in critical thinking and teamwork. The students involved were part of an after college club, Oxfam Youth Ambassadors, with 25 members (82% attended regularly). All students gained more understanding of immigration and refugees (48% said they gained a lot).
Reflections: I have learned a lot from organising projects, trips, activities and visits. I enjoyed working with students on projects that really matter and bring Geography to life. Leading the ERASMUS+ project was a new experience and although there was additional work in planning international trips, the opportunities that it gave to the students were immense. The success that the e-Twinning project received brought TTC to national attention.
Valentina Burley, firstname.lastname@example.org