Projects and Programs
The school has been implementing various projects and programs throughout the years in a wide spectrum of issues and topics. Using the hours of flexible zone students in all grades select with the teachers their topic of interest at the beginning of the school year and work on it once a week. The flexible zone in Greek elementary schools is a specific period of time set aside within the school schedule (4hrs/week for the 1st-2nd graders, 3hrs/wk for the 3rd-4th and 2hrs/wk 5th-6th grades) wherein cross-thematic activities and projects are conducted.
Two of the projects implemented are:
- Arigatou International’s Learning to Live Together, An Intercultural and Interfaith Programme for Ethics Education The project was developed in cooperation with and endorsed by UNESCO and UNICEF. Find out more: http://www.ethicseducationforchildren.org/en/
- Council of Europe and Zurich University of Teacher Education, IPE’s Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education. http://ipe.phzh.ch/en/School-and-Democracy/
In addition to the implementation of projects we consider it important to celebrate certain International Days. During these days we elaborate on issues of international interest and concern in order to commemorate, promote and mobilize for action. Some examples of these are:
March 6th – Day of Action against Bullying and School Violence
During this day an activity took place in school where photographs representing a variety of bullying and school violence situations were put on the wall to create a “walking gallery” where participants had to examine them and participated in a discussion. Using students’ input we commented on the different types of Bullying, the consequences for the victims, the profiles of the bullies but we mostly focused on the role of the bystanders. Not wanting to leave the students feeling helpless and powerless, the session drew to its close with a guided discussion. We concluded by indentifying the ways students can intervene when bulling incidents occur, but also ways to prevent them from happening in our own school community.
March 21st – Day against Racial Discrimination
For the second occasion “Painting T-shirts” activity from Learning to Live Together was used. The distinct trait of this event was that for celebrating it our school invited a Greek neighboring elementary school to co participate in the action. We felt that our students need not only to Learn to Live Together within our school community but also in the community of the host country. At the same time Greek students must come into contact with children from different countries, get to know them and about them in order to combat possible stereotypes and prejudices that are on several occasions the result of ignorance. Therefore, another class of 5th graders came to the school and together with our students worked for two hours on the topic. Using a short video and a discussion about it as an introduction to the theme the students formed 21 mixed pairs (one Greek with one foreigner student) and worked on the activity. Related pictures were put on the wall were all students could see and take ideas for their drawings.
Following the manual’s instructions, the students were then asked to reflect about what they would like to put on their T-shirts as a statement for the Day and to draft their designs on paper first. When they were satisfied they reproduced them on their T-shirts. Both schools were excited and happy with their joined action and arrangements were made for the Intercultural one to visit the Greek school within the next couple of weeks in order for the students to play together.