Erasmus + project meeting
Third project meeting in Czech Republic
The third meeting took place from 5 to 10 November 2017 in Kdyne, Czech Republic.
For of the third project meeting all Erasmus+ partners met in Kdyne in Czech Republic. In total, 16 teachers from 5 countries were guests at Masarykova zakladni skola Kdyne.
On Sunday evening the last guests arrived. All were required to be there at the latest for dinner and to stay until Friday. An earlier arrival and later departure depending on the flight connections was of course possible. Since it was not possible to find accommodation for all in the same house in Kdyne, the Czech colleagues booked a hotel in Klattau. There took place the first working dinner with the discussion of the program and the tuning in for the week.
The first program on Monday was a guided hike through Klatovy / Klattau with a special focus on the project topics of water supply, waste disposal and energy supply. Then the group drove to the partner school in Kdyne. After a tour of the school building with a warm welcome from the teaching staff and the students, the entire afternoon was reserved for the first project work session. The goals which had already been achieved and the schedule were discussed. Special attention was paid to the conformity with the application and to the achievement of the final result described therein. Difficulties in implementation were discussed. The presentations of the schools showed that the project is carried out goal-oriented, and additional actions were initiated in line with the topic. Günter Peifer from the German partner school, who moderated the workshop, was pleased about these additional activities. One could see that the project is being brought to life in the partner schools. He emphasized, however, that despite all the welcome additional activities, one should not lose sight of the desired goal. At the end, each partner school has to deliver a learning circle in PDF format in English and in their own language, which can be used without problems in the classroom. In the end mainly in relation to this result the project will be evaluated by the national agencies. These PDF files must be available at the next meeting in spring. After that, the learning circles that were created by the partner schools still have to be translated into the national languages. However, this last step should not be so time-consuming, because during the test phase translations have already been made and only corrections are required.
Erasmus + projects always require a special commitment from the teachers involved. In particular, the participants experience a boost in motivation through the appreciation of their work by those responsible for school education. Therefore, it was a special honor for the participants in the project meeting to be invited in the district office to Pilsen on Tuesday. Here they were warmly welcomed by Jaroslava Havlíčková, the director of the Education, Youth and Sports Department of the Pilsen Region, and Michaela Černá, a consultant for the organization of education. Havlíčková was very interested in the project work and underlined the importance of this international cooperation in terms of broadening the horizons of the students and for a common Europe. Günter Peifer, the spokesman for the group, introduced the participants from the six countries and described the tasks of the partner schools within the project. For each country there was information material on the Czech Republic and in particular on the Pilsen region. The representatives of the partner countries also brought informational material about their schools. The presentation by Michaela Černá on the education system in the Pilsen region was very informative. The teachers of the Erasmus+ partner countries were able to see many things in common, but also different organizational structures. On the return trip to Kdyne, the group visited the Center for Environmental Education in Prusiny at the gates of Pilsen. Tomas Pruner, the head of the center, gave an overview of the work in close contact with the schools of the region.
In line with the theme of the host country and the Greek school, Wednesday the focus was on water, thermal energy and energy transfer. After discussing the topics and their importance with regard to the learning circles, the group first went to Karlovy Vary. The development of the sophisticated city is mainly related to the hot springs. In addition to the healing powers of the mineral-containing water, the heat energy is also used for heating. The main advantage over other hot water heating systems is that the water comes out of the ground already hot and the energy does not have to be generated first. A very vivid impression of how the heat energy is transported, one could get on this day. The pipe system with the heat-insulating sheaths in the center of the spa resort under the footpaths along the river Eger has just been renewed. Next station was the nature reserve Soos in the basin of the river Eger. Soos means moor or swamp. The special feature of this nature reserve are the natural mofettes, carbon dioxide exit points, and mineral springs associated with volcanism in this tectonically stressed area.
The morning of the next day was again dedicated to project work. After visiting a biogas plant near Kdyne, the participants visited various school classes engaged in working on the learning circles. In the afternoon, the last working session was scheduled. The participants used the time spend together during the week intensively to exchange ideas about the learning circles. One could clearly feel how important such meetings are for the project work. The statements of the partner schools showed that the focus is now clearly on the final product. Günter Peifer summed up the most important points again. In particular, he emphasized for image, sound and film material as well as texts from external sources in the learning circles, it is absolutely necessary to provide source information and copyrights. In the end, the learning circles should not only be for one's own use, but also be generally available.
Fixing a joint appointment for a project meeting is always particularly difficult. The schedules of the participating schools have to be reconciled, and with 7 partner schools this is not so easy. Ultimately, however, an appointment was found that is feasible for all without much difficulty. All partners meet in Turkey from April 15, 2018 (latest arrival) to April 20, 2018 (earliest departure).
During the day, on Friday, guests returned to their home countries according to their flight connections. The time to departure was again used to visit the students when working with the learning circles in their classrooms. A very special thank goes to the Czech teachers Stáňa Ticháčková and Petra Černá for the organization of the meeting.
Responsible for the protocol: Guenter Peifer, Eichenlaubschule