Overview of our Erasmus+ Project
Project Title: Enhancing Technology Skills in the 21st Century.
September 2019 – March 2022
We are currently taking part in an Erasmus+ Project entitled ‘Enhancing Technology Skills in the 21st Century’. The 21st Century is known as the ‘Age of Knowledge’ or the ‘Educational Age’. New technologies and ICT strategies are being invented every day and are the focus of interest in education. ICT has brought a range of new terminology in education like e-learning, distance education and virtual classrooms and while the new terminology is being defined, hundreds of pioneers experiment with the use of ICT in education. As teachers, it is our duty to educate the children to keep them in line with new advances in technology so that they may become competent in this New Educational Age. For this project, teachers will travel to European Countries to take part in Erasmus+ Courses and brill these new skills and knowledge back to our school.
Our key goals in the area of European mobility and cooperation are:
- To improve digital competences and learn how to use technology to enhance learning for both students and teachers.
- To understand Social Media application in the classroom as an educational tool and equip ourselves with the strategies to keep our children safeguarded from its potential dangers.
- To bring new practical teaching strategies back to the classroom in the form of digital books, videos, communication methods, new apps, multimedia and educational games and also digital Literacy and Numeracy techniques.
- To learn about digital classroom management and how to keep control of the information being given and received when our students are under our supervision.
- To enhance student engagement and improve communication among students and teachers.
- To gain knowledge about issues regarding management of privacy settings for safe use of Social Media.
- To gain awareness of possible downsides of ICT in Education and how to avoid them e.g. safety issues like plagiarism, cyber bullying, cyber stalking, health and well-being.
It is our hope that by upskilling our staff in the area of ICT, we may all benefit from it in the form of improved learning outcomes. We hope to provide quality learning to our students without the implications of fear or inexperience. The learning process should be a lot more pleasant for all involved.
Our objectives for this Project include:
- To help teachers and students to become competent and confident technology users.
- To prepare students for the world of tomorrow by keeping up with the latest advances in technology.
- To help teachers and learners to have an open and flexible mind with regard to new technologies.
- To equip teachers with strategies to teach appropriate social skills to cooperate with ICT learners for a more productive learning experience.
- To empower students who are unable to use technology outside of school by ensuring sufficient access for those students.
- To facilitate good communication between students, thus promoting better social understanding.
- To help students and teachers become well-cultured citizens of the modern world.
- To develop ICT capability in finding, selecting and using information for a variety of subjects or projects.
- To provide learning opportunities for all learners including those with a variety of needs.
- To help equip teachers in the area of Assistive Technology in order to aid children with Special Needs and Communication difficulties in our school.
- To learn safeguarding techniques and strategies for both students and teachers.
- To improve STEM activities in our school involving technology.
- To learn fun ways to improve lessons in class with regards educational games and apps and how to use technology to improve Literacy and Numeracy.
Previous Erasmus+ Projects in our School
In May, Conor Adams, Rachel O’Sullivan, Ger McCarthy and Nicole Cooney travelled to Igualada in Spain as part of our Erasmus+ Project. Here are their personal reports from their trip.
In March 2018, 22 students and 13 teachers from England, Poland, Germany, Greece and Spain came to visit our school as part of an Erasmus+ Project. This Project entitled ‘Eurotrading, Young Entrepreneurs on the Move’ is a two year programme which aims to explore entrepreneurship, creativity and connections between a variety of European countries. The visitors became part of our school for the week and learned about our customs and traditions. They viewed the beautiful landscape of Kenmare and the surrounding areas and saw performances from our many talented students at our school concert. There are a lot of people we would like to thank for making the week such a success. These include Local Entrepreneurs Margaret McCarthy and Benoit Lorge for their wonderful workshops, Local Historian Dónal Sleator for his informative tour of Kenmare (how he remembers all those facts is incredible), Bernie O’Sullivan, Joanne Cashman, Peggy Healy and Maria Laffey for their work in organising both concerts, Vinnie and Mo at Wild Derrynane for their amazing tour and Kenmare Marketing and Events for organising this, Romi Curran for her Art Workshop, Deputy Mayor of Killarney John Joe Culloty for his tour of the Killarney area and the staff and students of St. Johns for organising events and hosting students in their classrooms. Finally, we would most especially like to thank the parents and students who took the children in for the week. We realise it is not easy to open your homes to visitors as people are so busy but we really do appreciate the effort you went to in doing so. The children were all so happy and well looked after all week and we are truly grateful for your kindness! The week was a great success with positive feedback from all the countries. Thank you to all!
Read our student reports on our Erasmus+ Germany trip in December at this link.
Our Erasmus+ Project is now in its second and final year and got underway this September with the setting up of our Travel Agency. Members include Agency Manager Rachel O’Sullivan, Marketing Officer Alex Moore, Financial Controller Elisha Murphy and Company Agent Gerald O’Sullivan. Our Committee Members met with Deputy Mayor of Kerry Patrick Connor-Scarteen who witnessed the Committee signing their contracts and we would like to say a big thank you to him for taking the time out to be part of the project. The Committee Members will now be busy getting the products made and packaged for the upcoming trip to Germany where the products will be sold by some 6th class pupils. Best of luck all!
In July, Mr. Courtney travelled to Doberlug, Kirchhain, Germany to meet with the leaders of the Erasmus+ Programme from England, Germany, Poland, Greece and Spain. The purpose of the trip was to evaluate the progress of the Programme to date and to plan for the coming year’s events. The upcoming Country visits include Germany in November, Ireland in March, Spain in May and a final Transnational meeting in July 2018. The planned activities for the upcoming year include writing penpal letters to our partner countries, investigating packaging and labelling of products and finalising our products for the Entrepreneurial Programme, publicising the products, selling of the products and evaluating the cost effectiveness as well as the advantages and disadvantages of the product. This will lead to a development of sound Entrepreneurial skills for the children. We will also be involved in videoconferences with the other countries and making summaries of sales. Below are some pictures of the school in Germany during the visit.
June 9th, 2017
Our Poland Trip – Read all about it by clicking this link.
March 6th, 2017
Our Greece Trip – Learn all about it by clicking this link.
November 25th, 2016
Euro Trading, Young Entrepreneurs on the move
The EU funded Erasmus+ Project entitled ‘Euro Trading, Young Entrepreneurs on the Move’ is a two year programme from 2016 to 2018 which recently got underway in St. John’s when three teachers travelled to Immingham in England for a transitional meeting and to meet other project members from the five partner schools – England, Germany, Poland, Greece and Spain.
About the project.
The project is about entrepreneurship and creativity. We want to explore methods and techniques of teaching entrepreneurship at primary schools offering pupils chances to show their creativity by establishing their own Travel Agency. During the process they’ll become acquainted with their new partners’ cultures and make new friendships. Teachers will be given the opportunity to explore the issue of entrepreneurship with young learners in cross-curricular ways. Twinspace will provide the platform for communication, collaboration, innovation and exploitation of the topic.
To increase our pupils’ design thinking, creative skills, critical thinking and entrepreneurial abilities. To help our pupils research, discuss, negotiate and make decisions within groups while creating local products and promoting them to their partners. To enhance our pupils’ ICT skills, to offer them opportunities to communicate in the foreign language and to learn about their partner’s cultures and promote their own. (For the teachers) To explore methods and techniques to improve entrepreneurial skills of Primary School learners. To increase ICT and foreign language skills. To become more active in the eTwinning community, become members of groups and participate in learning events. (For the school) To open to the society, to promote new educational methods, to become more innovative and pioneer in the local school community.
Introductions of our schools and getting to know our partners. Introductions of our project to the pupils and the school community. Discussing the topic of ‘entrepreneurship’ and what it implies. The pupils will start with ‘Travel Agencies’ and their way of work. The pupils will work as ‘travel agents’ and show their town and locality to their partners. A competition for the best travel guides will follow during the first meeting in Greece in February 2017. Next, the topic ‘How to save money’ will be explored with the help of outside experts. Then pupils will create products in different businesses and will sell them in real fairs during the mobilities in Spain and Ireland. Each partner will choose to work with their own products. A Travel Magazine will collect all the materials done throughout the project. There will be mobilities throughout the 2 years with pupils who will show their work to their partners exchanging opinions and comments and participating in events. Students will also create ads for the products and will present them in dissemination actions for the local communities (such as fairs and celebrations). An evaluation stage will be the last activity of the project, including evaluations by pupils, teachers and parents.
A Travel magazine with all the partners’ activities, creation of products and participation in fairs. Twinspace with common products (introductions, visits, video conferences).
SCHEDULE OF TRIPS FOR 2017
February 13th – 20th 2017 Greece – 2 teachers, 3 pupils (min)
May 28th – June 3rd Poland – 2 teachers, 3 pupils (min)
June 28th – 30th – Germany – planning meeting – 1 teacher (min)
Project Activities (see also project timetable)
Classes involved – 4th, 5th, 6th
Classes Junior Infants – 3rd classes will be involved in general activities e.g. Art work, writing activities, learning about partner countries.
- Project introduction to pupils
- Learning about Partner countries
- Learning about Entrepreneurship (based on Junior Entrepreneur Programme)
- Project Logo Competition – 4th, 5th and 6th classes
School winner to be uploaded to Twinspace on ETwinning website by January 10th
From January 17th All Partners will vote for the best logo from the projects six partners.
- Pupils 4th, 5th, 6th classes visit local Tourist Office/ Agency and learn how local area is promoted.
- Pupils learn about how a Company works, functions rules, roles of the Company members, Manager, Financial Controller, Marketing person agent etc.
All pupils in 4th – 6th will sign contract in order to be member of Company.
- Pupils from 4th – 6th will elect Company staff to the following roles.
Manager, Marketing officer, Financial Controller, Company Officer / Agent.
Two officers for each role will be elected to cover the two years of the project.
- Video conference of elected officers with one partner country.
Ireland will video conference with Spain
Activity to be completed by early February 2017.
- Letter writing
4th, 5th and 6th classes will write letter to pupil’s partner schools.
Junior classes can write one letter per class group.
- Design Brochure promoting Kenmare.
- All activities can be uploaded to the project Twinspace on eTwinning and project website.
Class Project Work
November / December 2016
6th Class Mr. Devane – Study Greece
6th Class Mr. Hussey – Study Poland
5th Class Mr. O’Sullivan – Study Germany
5th Class Mrs. Lucey – Study Spain
4th Class Ms. Spillane – Study England
4th Class Ms. Healy – Study Ireland
Lessons from Young Entrepreneur Programme
6th Class X 2
5th Class X 2 (adapted)
4th 5th and 6th classes to be uploaded to Twinspace by January 10th.
In November, the Principal and two of our teachers travelled to Immingham in England for a transitional meeting to organise the next two years and to meet other project members from the five partner schools – England, Germany, Poland, Greece and Spain.
They were met by the Mayor of Immingham, Councillor Stewart Swinburn and the Mayoress Karen Swinburn at Coomb Briggs Primary School in Immingham where the teachers exchanged good practice and discussed similar projects from their own towns for example the Tidy Towns Project. The visit was a great success and a great opportunity for teachers to exchange ideas. They were very impressed with the town, the school and its facilities and the quality of teaching and learning and brought back stories and pictures to share with the school.
October 13th, 2016
St. John’s National School have recently received good news that it has been approved for an Erasmus + programme entitled ‘Euro Trading, Young Entrepreneurs on The Move’. This is an E.U. funded project which will be undertaken with partner schools from five other countries, England, Germany, Poland, Greece and Spain. The project will be completed over a two year period from November 2016 to November 2018.
The aim of the project is to develop the pupils into young entrepreneurs. The well-planned programme will adopt a skills-based approach and provide real-life business opportunities which will apply Literacy, Numeracy, Thinking and IT skills. The Entrepreneurship learning will be integrated into our Curriculum and will be effectively coordinated by members of staff at each school. The pupils will be encouraged to use their previous knowledge and skills and to use their own initiative to develop their own business. The activities will include problem-solving and team working opportunities. In order to engage our pupils, we will invite visitors from the local community to give an insight into the range of different successful methods of running a business, and to provide the learners with some ideas for a product.
Our project outcomes will be for our pupils to develop a positive attitude towards entrepreneurship, to be creative in their thinking, to develop their social skills by negotiating, listening and persuading and to be organised when running their business. All pupils will be supported by dedicated staff that will also be developing their own entrepreneurial skills further. There will be six European countries participating in the project. Pupils, Teachers and Support Staff from each institution will be part of the project. We will also include our local authorities, our local businesses and local schools within our areas, local media, School Governors and the local communities.
During the first year we will focus on establishing their own travel agency which will provide opportunities for the children to apply for various jobs. Several activities will stem from the creation of the business, such as role play activities, experiences to improve confidence, team building workshops and learning about different countries. IT will be used to create brochures, logos, presentations, websites, graphs and booklets. The Internet will also be used for research purposes, such as finding and locating information on European countries within the project and for ideas on choosing a product for marketing. Once the travel agent is established, the focus will then begin on starting a business. We will invite guest speakers with a business background into the schools to work closely with the pupils and teachers. Once ideas for products have been chosen, there will be a voting system within each school.
During the second year, the children will begin on their venture, which will be to create and market their product. The process will begin with support from local businesses, guest speakers and local educational authorities teaching the children about the importance of advertising. We will invite relevant guests into the school in order to introduce the power of successful publicity. Secondary pupils with excellent IT skills will be invited to support and teach the Primary children. The children will create their product in preparation for their first fair in November. Children will then need to price their product, taking into account that they will need to cover costs and make a profit. The children will be responsible for counting their finances, banking their profit, paying bills and learning the importance of saving. The impact of this task will demonstrate the pupil’s capability and develop their self-confidence within Numeracy. They will also be made aware of the different currencies. With the business up and running, the attention of the pupils will return to the travel agency, creating a travel magazine which will be the final product.
The project will have a positive impact on our pupils, teachers and on the local community, opening doors for new ideas and exciting ventures for the future. Questionnaires for pupils, staff and parents will be used to discover the success of the programme. All results will be published on the Erasmus website, etwinning and our school website in order to hopefully benefit other ventures in the long term. All activities and products will be displayed in our Erasmus corner for parents, pupils and visitors to view. We are very hopeful that our project will change our pupils’ thinking, embed a positive attitude and develop their entrepreneurial capability for possibly starting their own businesses in the economic environment they live in.