Encouraging critical thinking and active citizenship locally and globally

2020 – 2022
The project "Encouraging critical thinking and active citizenship locally and globally" is initiated by Narva Keeltelütseum (Estonia), Tarsus Borsa Istanbul Sehit Umut Sami Sensoy Anadolu Lisesi (Turkey), Klaipedos turizmo mokykla (Lithuania), Agrupamento de Escolas do Castêlo da Maia (Portugal) and Gimnazija Brezice (Slovenia).

Critical thinking and active citizenship are the essential competences for young people if we want them to take care of our society in the future, be responsible adults and contribute to development, prosperity and peaceful cooperation of our countries.

The project objectives:
1. To exchange best practices in the field of developing students' critical thinking and active citizenship and to make a toolbox of possible methods and ways, so that other teachers and schools could use them with their students.
2. To arrange 1 short-term staff training event for teachers in the beginning of the project (10 teachers altogether) in order to collect the toolbox, plan students' virtual cooperation in eTwinning, learn from each other and external experts.
3. To organise 4 students' exchanges in the partner countries for developing their critical thinking and active citizenship globally (80 students in total). During four mobilities different methods and tools will be used. Evaluation after each exchange will help us improve every following programme and make it more effective.
4. To improve school teachers' competences in international cooperation and allow our schools to develop as learning organisations (at least 20 teachers will be involved in the project activities).

We have two groups of participants in the project:
1. Teachers of participating schools. There will be always two teachers in international activities (they can change) and supportive teams locally, who are responsible for implementation of toolbox, testing the methods, dissemination on the local level. The teachers work on exchanging best practices, coordinating students' cooperation in eTwinning, and collecting a toolbox.
2. Students of participating schools. Four students per country will take part in each exchange (different students each time). The age is 15-18 years old.

We believe that after the project our participants will be more critical, open minded, tolerant and active, they will be able to make positive impact on the parents and peers and also on the society in general.

We will use the project results for integrating the activities and tasks for development of students' critical thinking and active citizenship in the school daily routine.

The first project mobility
From 26 September to 2 October the students of Narva Language Lyceum visited their partners in Slovenia, Upper-Secondary School in Brežice. There were all the participants of the project (Slovenia, Turkey, Estonia, Lithuania and Portugal). During the mobility the students and teachers created activities and exchanged best practices in encouraging critical thinking and active citizenship locally and globally in various school subjects. The outcome of the mobility can be seen below. These are electronic books created by the students and teachers and a video which shows the activities held in Slovenia.
The participants not only achieved the results of the meeting, they also made new friends and felt really sad when they were leaving for home.

Here is the project video.
Here is e-book made by students.
Here is e-book made by teachers.

Project “Encouraging critical thinking and active citizenship locally and globally”

Student mobility in Lithuania within project “Encouraging critical thinking and active citizenship locally and globally”
During 18-24 September, 2022 the students of Narva Language Lyceum took part in the project mobility in a Lithuanian vocational school, in the city of Klaipeda (Klaipedos turizmo mokykla).
Teams from Turkey, Estonia, Slovenia, Portugal and Lithuania were testing the activities which had been created by teachers and students and developed their critical thinking and active citizenship. The activities included discussions, presentations, functional reading, workshops and many other ways of interaction with the project topic. The students participated eagerly in all the activities with pleasure.
Here is the feedback of our students:
“I am very glad that I had the opportunity to take part in this project. During this week, I gained a lot of experience in communicating in English, found new wonderful friends and visited many interesting places in Klaipeda and Vilnius. Most of all I liked to communicate with other project participants, to learn about the traditions of different countries. It was also interesting to get acquainted with Turkish, Slovenian and Portuguese. The program is very educational! It was very sad to say goodbye to the guys on the last day, but I will never forget this wonderful week, as it left a vivid mark on my memory”.
“We spent a wonderful week in Lithuania because we took part in a very interesting project.
This week we met many people of different nationalities: Lithuanian, Turkish, Portuguese and Slovenian. We went on trips with them, such as Vilnius, the Dolphinarium and the Oceanarium, took part in various tasks, such as team building, went for walks and played bowling. We exchanged contacts, made friends and sometimes text each other. Also, communicating with them, we improved our knowledge of the English language.
I really liked this trip, as it was not only interesting, but also useful.”
“I am very grateful to have a great opportunity to participate in this amazing project. During the week in Lithuania we spent a lot of time practicing our English and we all also got to know many wonderful people. I am still texting most of my new acquaintances sometimes. This trip was not only interesting and funny, but also educational as we learned a lot of interesting things about other country cultures.”
“It was my pleasure to be a part of such a great project. During the project, I made new friends with whom I still keep in touch, learned a lot about the culture of other countries, constantly communicated and had fun with foreigners. This trip opened up a lot of new things for me, I improved my English level, made new friends and broadened my horizons, this trip will forever remain in my memory”.