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2

January 2016

Global Citizenship
Democracy News
Index
About our Project ..1, 9
Ernst-Hansen School ..2
1st Primary School of Asvestohori ..3

Questionnaire on
Democracy to the
Parents
In the Kosice Meeting,
last September, an idea
on a questionnaire to
the
parents
about
Democracy
and
Citizenship
was
discussed and approved.
Later on, in November,
during the following
meeting, in Tomar, the
contents have been
discussed and approved.
As well as involving
pupils, we wish to give
parents a voice with
reference to the theme
of
Democracy
and
Citizenship.
The
questions
are
related to the rights of
citizens participation on
everyday life (country,
region,
or
local).
Although some of the
questions may look
political, rather they
are in the sense of
"civic" rather than the
way political parties act.

(continued on page 9)

St. Michaels School ..4


Agrupamento de Escolas Templrios ..5
ZS sv. Cyrila a Metoda ..6
Escola Les Accies ..7
Storkyrkoskolan and Bjrngrdsskolan ..8
From Thessaloniki to Tomar ..9

Citizenship and Democracy


This second newsletter of Global
Citizenship Steps in Europe Erasmus+
Project is entirely dedicated to the theme
of our second module: Citizenship and
Democracy.

In the Hellenic page, what else then


Democracy itself could be found
there? Isnt Hellenic republic,
nowadays, the heir of the Fathers of
Democracy?

We are close to the end of the project


and since its beginning many have been
the ways weve explored the themes with
pupils. The same happens to the
approach to the theme of the present
newsletter.

Ireland tells us about the Blue Star


Programme, leading the partnership
into some references to better
knowing this Europe we so much
cherish.

Across the schools of our partnership


several have been the ways and activities
to express, consolidate and embed in our
childrens minds the diversity of actions
and attitudes everybody might path
towards a better and understanding
future among people and cultures.
Travelling through the pages of this
newsletter we have an excellent glimpse
of the work that has been done.

Global Citizenship steps in Europe

In a more theoretical way, the


Slovakian pupils help everybody to
think how school is a privileged
environment to build Citizenship and
Democracy.
On the other hand, Sweden acts
democratically in several aspects
inside the school itself, as if those
(continued on page 9)

http://gcstepseu.weebly.com/

Ernst-Hansen School, Bielefeld

Germany

Class 8b visits our


Federal Parliament
der Landtag in Dsseldorf

Students as EnergyDetectives
The Ernst-Hansen-Schule is part of a
program that strives to reduce energy in
schools. Each year a few students of our
school are chosen to be the representative
Energy-Detectives. Together we learn a
lot
about
room
climate,
room
temperature, main energy consumers and
how to air a room properly. We have a few
measuring instruments, that help us to
find out what is going on in a room. We
can measure the light in the room to see
whether we run an adequate room
illumination. We can also measure the
amount of water coming from the tap. Our
CO2- light can measure the CO2
concentration in the air and shows us
thereby when it is time to air the room.

The Landtag is the parliament of


Northrhine-Westfalia.
NorthrhineWestfalia is one of 16 federal states of the
Republic of Germany.
We were allowed to take the seats of the
members of parliament and ministers and
made a role-playing game to learn how
laws are made.
A guide explained the work of the
parliament. You can compare it to a
football match. The plenary hall with all
the members of parliament is the field.
The parties are the teams and the
members of parliament are the players.
They were elected for 5 years. The election
is their qualification. The referee is Frau
Gdecke the president of parliament
Landtagsprsidentin.

In that year we go through the classrooms


and introduce students to ways of
thoughtful energy consumption. Therefor
we demonstrate our devices. A small
woden model of a room with two glass
walls helps us to illustrate the effect that
inrush airing has got on the CO2
concentration in a room. We document
our work and send it in. We can win a
reward of 400 Euros for new instruments
and a treat for our hard work.

Sometime later we discussed with Wibke


Brems a member of parliament. She is 34
years old and an engineer. She told us
about her work as a member of
parliament. She is engaged in ecology and
climate protection.

1st Primary School of Asvestohori, Thessaloniki

My friends,

Hellas

Mrs Democracy is a very old and decent


lady, who visits our home every Saturday.
We are looking forward to her arrival,
because when she comes our home
becomes better.
That means we dont call names each
other, father doesnt yell to mother and we
respect each other, while she is present.
We are sitting to the table and we are
eating in a very decent and calm way. We
discuss several things and we hear the
others respectfully. We pay attention even
to our babys words.
Mrs Democracy doesnt eat or drink. She
only smiles and when the supper is over
she stands up and says: Next Saturday
then! And dont forget: Your rights end
when the others begin!
After she leaves, we act in a very
democratic way for a couple of days. I
think that Mrs Democracy should visit us
more often.

Pupils discuss with the Major

P.S.: Democracy means participating


to common affairs.
Democracy means that every citizen is
equal in front of the law.
Democracy means that conscience
dominates to wild instincts and
repulsiveness.
Democracy is not only a regime, but a
situation, is so natural and necessary
like the air we breathe.
Without
it
we
feel
unsafe,
unaccomplished and miserable.
We should never trust people, who in
the name of democracy want to rule
our lives, our liberties or our
properties.
Democracy is so fragile, that we have
to defend it, every single day.
Democracy was invented a long time
ago in order to make mans life better
and easier. The word democracy
comes from the words +
and means that the power of
the state belongs to citizens.
Sincerely yours
The students at the 5th grade
http://blogs.sch.gr/dimasves
/

Pupils vote for Class Council

http://blogs.sch.gr/dimasves
/

St. Michaels School, Galway

Blue Star Programme


Ireland

Pupils engaged with the wider


community through the development
of links with community, sporting and
voluntary
organisations.
These
engagements sometimes took place in
school or sometimes took the form of
field visits.

The Blue Star Programme is an


education initiative for primary school
students across Ireland. The idea of the
Programme is simple: to foster better
understanding and knowledge of the
European Union and how it affects the
lives of Irish citizens among Irish primary
pupils through classroom projects and
activities. The Programme is supported
by the office of the Minister of State for
European Affairs, the Department of the
Taoiseach, the European Commission
Representation in Ireland and the
European Parliament Information Office
in Ireland.

On Europe Day they mounted an


exhibition of their work on Europe and
invited all pupils in the school to this
exhibition. They also sent an invitation
to their local Teachta Dla (Member of
Parliament), Derek Nolan to attend.
They guided him through the exhibition
and briefed him on the Blue Star
Programme.

Pupils of sixth class signed up for this


programme. They explored European
themes through four key areas:
historical, geographical, cultural and
institutional.

He then spoke to the senior classes


about the history and workings of the
EU, and detailed them about the rights
and responsibilities of European
citizens. Pupils also had the
opportunity to question him about the
EU.

They learned about the devastation of


the Second World War and about the
Holocaust. They learned about the
functions of The European Council, The
European Parliament and The European
Commission.
They examined the
impacts that these institutions have on
Irish citizens. They learned about
European elections and about Irish
Members of the European Parliament.
Ms Marion Harkin MEP visited our
school. She answered pupils questions
about the European Parliament, and
stated that the formation of the EU has
made Europe a more peaceful
continent.

Pupils wrote a report about their work


and their exhibition. They submitted
their report in order to gain the Blue
Star Certificate and European Flag.
They were successful and they were
presented with the Certificate and Flag
by the Mayor of Galway.
The Blue Star Programme helped pupils
to understand the importance of
Europe to Ireland, enabled them to
develop a greater appreciation of
cultural diversity, understand the
workings of democracy in Europe, and
to become better European citizens. It
developed an awareness among pupils
of the impact of Europe on their
everyday lives.

As well as teaching about the


democratic processes of the EU
throughout the year teachers were very
proactive in developing the citizenship
skills of pupils.
4

https://www.mervuebns.com/

Agrupamento de Escolas Templrios, Tomar

Portugal

Human Rights

The activities could not finish without a

Santa Iria School 6th grade pupils have


been invited to use their talents and
creativity to translate in visual messages
some fundamental values on Global
Citizenship.

and promote the fundamental liberties, the


https://www.mervuebns.com/
attitudes
to better have when facing with

reflection on how they might act to defend

injustice and discrimination and what to do


to show solidarity and help.
It was very interesting to see their ideas

To begin with, they had to think on the


meaning of the word citizenship so that
they might understand that citizenship
consists on the social way of being with
Human Rights as the base of everything,
namely the values of equality, democracy
and social justice.

coming to the surface of their spirits, some


of them real solidarity initiatives.
And with all those ideas they painted the
values of global citizenship.

The Right to Vote

The debate started with the visualization of


strong images leading the pupils to
concepts
and
realities
such
as
freedom/slavery, child work, torture The
aim was the social dialogue, the respect for
other peoples opinions and the conscience
of a critical and creative democratic spirit.

Templrios primary School, in Tomar, is one


of the places in the city where the citizens
vote on general and local elections. As in
other countries, the school, on the Sunday
voting day, is open to all voters. City Hall is
in charge of providing the voting boxes and

As a result of this debate, pupils started


linking their personal thoughts and
practices with those images as well as the
never ending new on the human rights
violations.

the hidden desks for the voters to write


their choice on the voting bulletins.
That usually happens on the previous Friday
to the voting Sunday.

They felt particularly shocked with the wars


and the sea migrants that have to run away
from their homes seeking for shelter in
Europe. And they wondered about the way
they are received in some countries and
their futures.

Last October 2015, on Friday the 2nd, our


school was already equipped with those
voting instruments. So, the 4th grade pupils
tried to dramatize a voting session: the
voters queue, the members of the voting
tables, the placing of the vote inside the

On the same registration, images of women


and children sold and slaved, forced to
prostitution and to work endless hours
without any school and the warmth of a
family made them think deeply.

voting box.
It was an excellent way for pupils to realize
how a real voting session works.

http://www.aet.pt/

ZS sv. Cyrila a Metoda, Kosice

The courage to help.../in the school of life


Slovakia

families who are on the margin of social


security, often hopeless and forgotten.
http://w
The classes make contact with families in
such situations and find out their needs
via civil association The Lighthouse of
Hope. After that you can see the power
of each class team and their form
http://w
teacher, but also the assistance of
parents and anonymous helpers. The
boxes are filled with more and more
presents, the help intensifies and on the
last day before Christmas holidays
presents in boxes are delivered to the
places where help, hope and love are
needed. Children, teachers and parents
feel the joy of giving and the anonymous
good is spread. Suddenly our three
school aims the personal example, the
team work and the mission are fulfilled.
The values which we talk about (charity,
sacrifice, responsibility, self-denial) are
not a theory anymore, but they are the
possible beginning of childrens future
lifestyle. One definition of charity is
loving people. All we need to make a
contribution to charity is the desire for
change.

It is very simple (and we adults do this


often) to say to a child and a teenager
that they are going to need this and that
in their life. It is necessary to show them
or involve them in things like that. There
are many possibilities and opportunities
for creating the common good in every
aspect of life (and also in the field of
education). If it happens, then the school
is full of life, or is it the other way round?
Both cases express that the child remains
in the centre of attention pupils and
young people whom we want to inform,
to form and maybe later to transform.
They were entrusted to us and we have
the responsibility to accompany them on
their quest for knowledge.
The school of life in 21st century...it is
also the wisdom of our ancestors, their
message of good, love and deep faith,
hope, respect, solidarity, a selfless and
endless line of mutual help.
A packet of rice, flour, sugar, peas, lentils,
tea, coffee, sweet-smelling washing
powder, school pens, pencils, sometimes
also toys these are the things which our
mums can find in their kitchen and our
school children can share them with
people who are in very difficult life
situations. You can see happy smiles and
curious looks when the baskets are full of
these things and children bring them as
their sacrifice during holy masses for
children and teenagers in our school
chapel. These presents are then taken in
a car to those people who need hope and hope is really brought to them
thanks to a civil association called The
Lighthouse of Hope.

Everybody has got the internal desire to


help the others. It is a pity that some of
us never find the time or reason to do it.
Sometimes we give too little, sometimes
unwillingly, or only when we are asked.
However, sometimes nobody knows the
other side and still we help someone to
become more independent.
We give to those who need less in life,
but they still have the courage, bravery,
strength to carry on, who do not give up
but fight their life, not against it.
When we give, we enrich our heart and
soul and that is catchy. There is no
better movement for the human heart
than to bend down and help somebody
on their feet.

The present in a box is the name of


another activity at our school which
helps and expresses solidarity with

http://www.zscamke.sk/sk/projekty

Escola Les Accies, Barcelona

Spain

This school year, as one of the activities


of the Erasmus + Project, the students in
6th grade will do a lot of work on the
topics of Democracy and Citizenship.
They have chosen their class name after
this topic: The Parliament. As a warm up
activity in order to introduce the topic
We need to organise ourselves they
carried on a whole class activity in which
it was necessary to accomplish an
objective within a limited time frame.
The pupils were given a lot of materials
and the task was to create a display
within 1 hour with the involvement of
the 26 pupils in the class. The teacher
was only an observer.

Creating a parallelism between the


Generalitat, their school and their homes,
students must know its internal
organisation and the tasks that are
carried there.

The other fundamental concept that will


http://www.zscam
be observed is Democracy, meaning the
freedom to participate in the future of
the community through the elections. All
citizens are entitled to participate in this
process. Our pupils are the future of our
society. The school and its families play a
key role in developing them as citizens.
Also important is the role of the
Department of Education since through
their policies they have to ensure that
the education system promotes civic and
democratic values.

This activity is the starting point of some


aspects of our society that they will work
on later on. For instance, the need of a
certain level of organization in our lives:
in our family, at school, in the
neighborhood, in the village, city or
country in order to avoid chaos. Also, the
need of a leader, hierarchiesthe sort of
structures that organize a society and at
this point we will present different
government organizations.

Schools have, for quite some time now,


incorporated
democracy
in
its
functioning. Class assemblies are the
moment for discussion and voting, if
necessary, on some important aspects of
school to be decided. From the earliest
stages, teachers work with the students
on topics such as no discrimination and
the importance of dialogue and
cooperation.

Images from different parliaments


around the world will be collected and
displayed. Films and research works
about different historical situations in
which democracy has not been respected
will also be a focus of our work.

Adding to the democratic habits that the


pupils have acquired at school, it has
been a great experience to participate in
an activity where the students have had
the opportunity to experience politics at
first hand. For the Parliament visit we
have created 4 imaginary political parties
and their political campaign. Logos,
slogans, political programs, speeches and
specific political vocabulary have been
carried on in class prior to the visit. It has
been hard work but they have enjoyed it
and learnt a lot about politics and
politicians.

We have visited the Catalan Parliament


participating in an activity acting as
deputies. The objective of this visit is to
make students realize that they are
citizens of a country and of a region that
is Catalonia.
As citizens there is an institution which
represents them, which cares for their
wellbeing, and they have the right and
ought to participate in its constitution.
This institution is the Generalitat.

Isabel Fontcuberta

Class 6 Tutor

http://xtec.cat/ceipacacies/

Storkyrkoskolan and Bjrngrdsskolan, Stockholm

Sweden

Class council

Culture council

In our class council we talk about whats


good and bad about the class and we try
to make the bad things better. By making
things better we try to figure out what
really happened in a fight or a situation
where you dont feel comfortable. We
also respect each other as we are and we
are kind to each other. Its very
important to have a class council in a
class, because everybody can say what
they think about the school. And that is
democracy!

In the Culture council we try to organize


different culture activities. We also talk
about what we want to do. For example
go to different theatres and educational
museums. We talk about what culture
means, for example theatre, music and
museums. The students in the culture
council can come up with ideas about
how to use the schools money. Every
http://xtec.cat/ceipacacies/
year we can apply
for extra money for
culture activities. This year we will work
in a project about theatre.

Pupils council
The curriculum in Sweden says that the
pupils should work in democratic forms
and learn how to be critic and solve
problems. In the pupils council we discuss
what the classes find important in school.
Every class has one member in the pupils
council. We have meetings every second
week. We publish our minutes for pupils,
teachers and parents. Once or twice a
year a parent is taking part. This autumn
we made a big work about consequences
to the rules we have agreed to in school.
We have also talked about the Equal
Treatment Plan. It is a plan that every
school and place of work must have. We
must explain how we make it possible for
everyone to take part in all activities in
school.

http://storkyrkoskolan.stockholm.se/

Food Council
In Sweden we get lunch every day in a
canteen. The food council takes place
every other month. The representatives
from each class can talk about the
classes opinions about the food and the
canteen.
They discuss about the classes opinions
and what we can do to improve the food
in school. The dining mistress is taking
part in those meetings. The Food Council
often talk about meals that the kids want
and don`t want to eat. Common
questions are usually that the younger
kids dont want whole grain rice, they
want white rice instead. The black
pudding is the food that is discussed at
most. Kids from ten to twelve dont like
it, but kids from six to nine love it. The
food council talks about whats healthy
and good food for the body.

http://bjorngardsskolan.stockhol
m.se

Global Citizenship Democracy News

From Thessaloniki to Tomar

(continued from page 1)

When, in April 2013, during the


Thessaloniki project meeting of the
Landmarks and Monuments Comenius
Project, all the partners received a
baby olive tree in Thessaloniki as a
symbol of peace and friendship among
Europeans, the Portuguese delegation
decided to ask the municipal political
power of Tomar some conditions for
the tree to be planted in a public place.

Citizenship and Democracy

(continued from page 1)

Questionnaire on
Democracy to the
Parents
By doing this, we firmly
believe that we are
crossing the school walls
and making parents as
an active part of our
project.
Their
ideas
and
contributions are fully
defended
by
the
anonymity we provide
to the answers: no
names, no countries, no
schools.
We will have two kinds
of results. The school
one
and
the
international
one,
because
the
questionnaires will be
treated in two steps:
first, at school level,
then at partnership
level. We will have two
interesting indicators,
not only for the project
and schools but also for
Erasmus institutions.
By
now,
the
questionnaires
are
being analyzed. The
results will be published
and presented in April,
during the Barcelona
Project Meeting.

January 2016

activities had been organized in order to


prove the Slovakian reflections, which
means that no matter these activities
have really not been previously
arranged, the spirit of our project is
deeply founded in our schools.
Reading the Portuguese, Spanish and
German pages, the citizenship in the
political sense might be found: elections
and elected people as well as elected
institutions.

Since then, the olive tree grew a little


bit and, finally, in November 2015,
during the Tomar Meeting of Global
Citizenship Project, we had the
opportunity to properly celebrate the
planting and the friendship.

The level of accuracy towards the goals


of the project is rooted enough for our
schools to complement themselves
without previous planning! This is
extraordinary.

So, on the 13th November, before


municipal and educational authorities,
the Hellenic delegation proudly
removed the Hellenic, Portuguese and
Tomar flags from the tree, showing,
this way, to all Europe the friendship
between 1st Primary School of
Asvetohori and Templrios Group of
Schools.

Furthermore, the Catalan school has


created activities that only have the
expected result if the expected
instrument is filled: organization!
Democracy is based in trust and
organization, and Barcelona tells that in
a very simple way.
Two last words to other two aspects our
newsletter refers:

The tree will grow next to the eldest


church of Tomar, pantheon of the
ancient
Templar
Masters
and
surrounded by other olive trees. The
right place to live for many years!

Citizenship is also saving energy as a


way to get a better world for the future,
and that is another message from
Germany.
However, Democracy is Civil Rights.
They
are
commemorated
and
remembered all across Europe each
November. That was the theme of a
school exhibition of Portuguese works
during the 5th Partnership held in
Tomar, Portugal, open to the school
community and the city.

Global Citizenship steps in Europe

http://gcstepseu.weebly.com/