eTwinning Bilateral Contact Seminar in Izmir Turkey,
2-5 October 2013
Keeping the momentum up, 21 new eTwinning projects established in Izmir, are now vibrantly underway. Just a few of the comments coming in from Turkish and UK teachers after the event:
“I am truly inspired!”
“As teachers, we always need to keep learning new things, learn from others, and share what we know. With this seminar, I will now be an active participant of the eTwinning portal through which I can inspire and be inspired by others.”
“Meeting likeminded people all willing to create an activity where a relationship can be developed between countries and cultures is such an opportunity that many people are unable to take part in. eTwinning bridges the gaps that prevents this happening in many schools. I have seven people in school champing at the bit to take a project further”
“Before last Wednesday I had never been to Turkey before. I was very excited to see the town of Izmir and meet new colleagues - both from the UK and from Turkey - who were keen to start a bilateral project online. I had a really wonderful two days. I have come home happy, inspired and energised. Good luck to everyone!”
Read more about the event all these UK and Turkish teachers attended, in this blog from the bilateral workshop, written by one of our 23 UK teachers who attended.
The first week of October 2013 saw 23 teachers and of course Liz our NSS representative from the British Council, flying from all corners of the UK to spend two full days meeting and working with the same number of Turkish teachers in sunny Izmir on the Aegean coast.
The location of our superb hotel was breathtaking, with a backcloth of hills, which encircle the bustling Izmir Bay, where numerous ferries travel from one side to the other, as frequently as buses.
The main objective of the two day seminar was for everyone to leave with a working knowledge and understanding of the eTwinning website, along with the formation of partnerships with our Turkish colleagues, for collaborative projects.
There was plenty of laughter and fun with the five ingenious physical ‘ice-breaking’ activities that the Turkish NSS had provided for the first morning, where collaborative teamwork was needed in order to avoid failure, for the teams of 10-12 people. No time was lost at this seminar and by lunchtime on the first day a ‘Partner Finding and Matching Activity’ resulted in most people having found someone to work with on a collaborative project.
After an informative hands on session on the eTwinning website, where one of the many discoveries was how to re-size photos on an ipad or tablet, it was time to sit down with our Turkish partners to get down to planning our collaborative project and to send them to the NSS (eTwinning National Support Service) for approval.
Day two started with a long list of tasks for delegates to achieve on the eTwinning portal’s ‘TwinSpace’, as it was important that everyone had a working understanding of the site for their agreed projects. This proved quite challenging, but with the support of the NSS and Ambassadors, these were completed, so we should see some exciting projects over the next few months from this Bilateral seminar in Turkey.
We had further useful sessions on Web.2.0 tools and tips for creating good collaborative projects, before everyone presented their projects to the group and a celebration cake was brought in. Finally everyone one was presented with their certificate from the Turkish NSS.
At the Gala Dinner later that evening we celebrated the very successful Seminar with our new friends, at a well-known Turkish Restaurant by Izmir Bay.
The friendliness and enthusiasm of our hosts, along with their great organisational skills, from collection at the airport to the Seminar itself, will remain in our memories for a long time and many new links will be made with this fascinating country with its many traditions and rich history, for pupils in UK schools.”
Keep an eye on our eTwinning UK Blog to read more accounts from our series of eTwinning Autumn contact seminars; and for news of upcoming eTwinning contact seminars in Spring 2014, so you can apply and be similarly galvanised on your school’s international journey!