A13@M0 – FINAL PLENARY MEETING WITH KC CHILDREN

Aim

  • • To reflect on the learning experience with children
  • • To collect children’s suggestions about the Curriculum revision

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Respect
  • Civic-mindedness
  • Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Skills of listening and observing
  • Linguistic, communicative and plurilingual skills
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world

Overview

Materials

None

Step-by-step instructions

  •  Before starting the plenary meeting, implement the activity “Letters to the next generation”, described at the end of the chapter.
  •  Ask the children for their opinion about the Curriculum.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Debrief the activity with “The Telegraph”.

A12@M0 – PUBLIC EVENT

Aim

  • To celebrate children’s regeneration activity at school

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Respect
  • Civic-mindedness
  • Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Skills of listening and observing
  • Linguistic, communicative and plurilingual skills
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world

Overview

An event involving all school community (children, teachers, head teacher, staff personnel, parents)

Materials

  • What is necessary for the specific activities chosen

Step-by-step instructions

  • The specific contents of this activity will be decided by children, teachers and parents. Here are some suggestions: children’s work realized for “Covid-19 Journalist”, “Message to authorities”, “The school I want”.
  • Invite all children and parents of the school.
  • Try to invite representatives of the local community (e.g. the mayor, school principal, town council members, local associations) to view the exhibition, meet the children to hear their concerns, listen to their proposals, and discuss possible changes. If possible, the Revised European Charter on the Participation of Young People in Local and Regional Life (CoE)32 could be signed by pupils and town policy makers.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Debrief the activity with “The Telegraph”.

32 https://rm.coe.int/168071b4d6

A11@M0 – ORGANIZATION OF THE PUBLIC EVENT

Aim

  • To plan the public event

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Respect
  • Civic-mindedness
  • Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Skills of listening and observing
  • Linguistic, communicative and plurilingual skills
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world

Overview

Materials

  • What is necessary for the specific activities chosen

Step-by-step instructions

  • Ask children to think about the organization of this event.
  • Ask voluntary parents how they could help children.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Debrief the activity with “The Telegraph”.

A10@M0 – COVID-19 JOURNALIST

Aim

On completion of this activity, children will be able:

  • Support other people despite differences in points of view
  • Engage with public issues
  • Identify discrepancies or divergences in materials being analysed
  • Have confidence in their own ability to achieve their goals
  • Collaborate with others

Source of the activity

Contributed by Maria Grazia Lo Cricchio (Free-to-speak-safe-to-learn)

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Civic mindedness
  • Self-efficacy
  • Autonomous learning skills
  • Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Co-operation skills
  • Linguistic and communicative skills

Overview

Materials

  • Videos about Covid-1927
  • If a poster is to be produced by the children to present the results of the activity, a poster creator tool28
  • Alternatively, if the children cannot use web tools for creating posters, a common online blackboard may be used instead29
  • If the children are asked to produce a video report, a video making tool may be used30

Step-by-step instructions

  • Discuss with the children what journalists usually do in their job. Explain that quality journalists are responsible of their texts and that they respect certain principles31. Explain that they themselves are going to become journalists, reporting on the Covid-19 crisis in their community, and that they will be interviewing parents, grandparents and other children (possibly using online resources) to find out about their experiences of the pandemic. Additionally, they might be asked to collect data and information concerning previous public health crises in the past, for example the Spanish flu pandemic in 1918, in order to compare these crises with the present pandemic.
  • Divide the children into small groups, and give each group a specific assignment to investigate and report. These might be as follows:
    • Group A might focus on Covid-19 and the characteristics of this pandemic crisis (e.g. What is a coronavirus? What problems are linked to it? How does the virus spread?)
    • Group B might focus on the present crisis and the relevant safety behaviours (e.g. What is good behaviour? What is forbidden? What is allowed? Do children/adults/elders know what to do in this kind of situation?)
    • Group C might focus on the past, and investigate what safety behaviours were required during a previous pandemic such as the Spanish flu (e.g. What was forbidden? What was allowed? Did children/adults/elders know what to do in that situation?)
    • Group D might focus on the mismatch between what people believe are safety behaviours and actual safety behaviours (e.g. Are there differences between the behaviours of adults and peers and what the official regulations specify as safety behaviours?)
    • Group E might focus on children and Covid-19 (e.g. Are there specific requirements of children during pandemic? Do children understand what is happening? What are the things that adults can do to help children during this period?)

    Take steps to ensure that all children have an opportunity to contribute actively to the work that is being conducted by their group.

  • Each group prepares a report on the specific topic that has been assigned to them. The reports could be produced in the form of posters, and a poster exhibition could be used to present the outcomes of the activity. The groups present their reports to the rest of their class. Alternatively, the groups could be asked to produce a short video report, and a video exhibition could subsequently take place. Children might need some assistance or instruction on how to use the online tools for making posters or videos.
  • Summarise all of the ideas that have emerged, and discuss with the children how these ideas can help their community or families during the Covid-19 pandemic and in the future.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Debrief the children by asking questions such as these:
    • How did you like being a journalist?
    • Was it difficult to find the examples and information you needed?
    • Were any parts of this activity especially challenging? Especially fun?
    • What did you learn from this activity?
    • What did you learn from the reports made by the other groups?
    • When the Covid-19 pandemic is over, which behaviours should be maintained and which ones may be changed?
  • In addition, children can be asked to share any other personal tips or advice they might have as a result of participating in this activity.


27 https://youtu.be/MVvVTDhGqaA
28 https://www.canva.com
29 https://jamboard.google.com
30 https://www.rawshorts.com
31 It is possible to find a good compilation of these principles at: https://www.ifj.org/who/rules-and-policy/global-charter-of-ethics-for-journalists.html

A9@M0 – COMPARING PERSPECTIVES ON COVID-19

Aim

On completion of this activity, children will be able:

  • to seek contact with other people in order to learn about their culture
  • to listen carefully to differing opinions
  • to understand other people positions
  • to reflect critically on how person’s worldview is just one of many worldviews
  • to recognise that cultural diversity should be positively valued and appreciated

Source of the activity

Contributed by Vasilka Kolovska (Free-to-speak-safe-to-learn)

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Valuing cultural diversity
  • Openness to cultural otherness, other beliefs, world views and practices
  • Skills of listening and observing
  • Linguistic, communicative and plurilingual skills
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world: cultures, media, economies

Overview

Materials

  • A partner school in another country – the CoE Democratic Schools Network is a suitable place for finding partners21
  • Access to an online means of communication22
  • Advice about online collaboration23
  • Tools for online collaboration24
  • World Health Organization Covid-19 picture dashboard25
  • National responses to the Covid-19 pandemic26

Step-by-step instructions

  • Identify and establish contact with a suitable school in another country with which to collaborate. Interactions can take place through online means such as Skype or Zoom. If the children do not share a common language, they can communicate either through a language that they are learning at school as a second language, or through a lingua franca.
  • Pair each learner with a peer in the other school, or pair small groups of children in each school with each other. Ask them to discuss the current Covid-19 situation in their own countries, and to compare the actions that are being taken by their respective governments for dealing with the pandemic. They should consult the Covid-19 response pages on the official websites of the children’s national governments for information. The following questions may be given to the children to stimulate their discussion (these questions may be simplified for younger children):
    • Is the Covid-19 pandemic progressing in the same way or in different ways in the two countries?
    • What actions are being taken by the governments in the two countries for dealing with the pandemic?
    • Are the actions in the two countries being properly presented on international websites (such as the World Health Organization website)?
    • Can the children identify some actions from the other country which could be implemented in their own country?

    The online collaborations can be conducted using Google Slides or Tricider.

  • Ask children to discuss the actions that can be taken by national governments, and to develop a list of the actions which they think that national governments should be taking.
  • The children (or groups of children) make presentations on the outcomes of the activity to the other children in their own class. They may also make presentations to children in the other school.
  • The international contacts created by this activity can also be used for other joint activities and collaborations between the children in the two schools in the future.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Ask the children to reflect critically on what they have learnt through the activity. They should also be asked to comment on and discuss the learning process and the results of collaborating with children from other countries. The following questions may be used:
    • What did you learn about your partners in the other country?
    • What challenges or difficulties did you encounter during the communication process, and how did you overcome them?
    • How has your understanding of people in other countries, and your ability to communicate with them, been changed and enriched by this activity?


21 https://www.coe.int/en/web/campaign-free-to-speak-safe-to-learn/school-projects
22 https://www.skype.com, https://www.zoom.us/
23 https://rm.coe.int/collaboration/16809e45bc
24 https://www.google.co.uk/slides/about, https://youtu.be/dvLuwL9Quzw
23 https://covid19.who.int
23 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_responses_to_the_COVID-19_pandemic

A8@M0 – MESSAGE TO THE AUTHORITIES

Aim

On completion of this activity, children will be able:

  • to reflect on the current situation of Covid-19
  • to discuss what can be done to help make the community a better place
  • to generate enthusiasm among group members for accomplishing shared goals
  • to understand and appreciate that information on public policies and their implementation should be made available to the public
  • to describe the social impact and effects on others of different communication styles

Source of the activity

Contributed by Vasilka Kolovska (Free-to-speak-safe-to-learn)

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Valuing democracy, justice, fairness, equality and the rule of law
  • Civic-mindedness
  • Co-operation skills
  • Linguistic and communicative skills
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world

Overview

Materials

  • CoEuncil of Europe website on Covid-19
  • World Health Organization‎ website on Covid-1918
  • Tools for online collaboration19
  • A random group generator20

Step-by-step instructions

  • During the Covid-19 pandemic, many institutions have developed dedicated web pages devoted to the crisis. Ask the children to begin this activity by conducting a web search to find the relevant web pages on the official websites of their local authorities, national government, the Council of Europe, the World Health Organization, and other organisations. Younger children can use the Google Translator Extension to help them understand the contents of the web pages that they find.
  • Ask the children to think about the actions that are being taken by the different organisations, working individually. The following question may be used to stimulate their reflections (these questions can be simplified for younger leaners):
    • Is the information about Covid-19 well-organised on the different websites?
    • Are there any actions that are focused on children’s and young people’s needs?
    • What other improvements can you suggest to politicians to deal with children’s and young people’s needs during and after the Covid-19 pandemic?
    • How can children address their proposals to the different organisations?
  • Children create a list of their own answers to these questions, which they can use for either online or in face-to-face collaboration with other children in their class. They can use Google Slides, Tricider or Pearltrees for this purpose.
  • Organise the children into small groups, who work together (either online or face-to-face) to develop their ideas. A random group generator can be used to allocate children to groups. Each group first summarises the main positive and negative actions in response to Covid-19 from the website. Each group then creates a list containing their own suggestions to local politicians about the actions that should be taken to deal with children’s needs during and after the Covid-19 pandemic. A template for online collaboration can be created using either Google Slides, Tricider or Pearltrees.
  • Each group then creates messages addressed to their localauthorities. These messages express their reflections on their Covid-19 responses and their suggestions for meeting the needs of children. Encourage the children to be creative – for example, their messages could be organised in a letter, video, email, cartoon strip, etc. Children may send their messages to the local authorities. One of the challenges is to find the appropriate tool for expressing their thoughts.
  • Each group presents their work to the whole class. The children consider whether to actually send their messages to the local authorities. During this stage, they should be encouraged to believe in themselves and their potential.
  • Ask the groups to find out who is the person in charge in the authorities and to whom they should address their messages. For this purpose, it is important to explore the contact information and the organisational structure that is provided on the relevant websites. Sometimes children will need the help of the teacher to identify the correct person.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Ask the children to comment on and discuss the process of the activity and the results of creating their messages to the authorities.
  • Ask the children to reflect critically on what they have learnt from the activity with the following questions:
    • Did you find the updated information on Covid-19 on the websites easily?
    • Did you learn something new about Covid-19? If so, what did you learn?
    • Do you think that your messages will be taken into account by the organisations?


18 https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

19 https://www.google.co.uk/slides/about/, https://youtu.be/dvLuwL9Quzw

20 https://www.randomlists.com/team-generator

A7@M0 – THE SCHOOL I WANT AFTER THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

Aim

On completion of this activity, children will be able:

  • To reflect on the best school environment they need to learn and develop
  • To think critically and use their problem-solving skills
  • To use appropriate ICT tools in order to achieve a goal
  • To understand what is needed for all children, without distinction and discrimination, in any school environment

Source of the activity

Contributed by Cornelia Melcu (Free-to-speak-safe-to-learn)

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Valuing human dignity and human rights
  • Autonomous learning skills
  • Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Co-operation skills
  • Openness to cultural otherness and to other beliefs, world views and practices

Overview

Materials

  • An online photo gallery of the children’s school and classrooms, provided13
  • Web tools for collecting children’s answers14
  • A web tool for choosing a few participants to present their notes15
  • ICT tools for creating comix16
  • An online wall17

Step-by-step instructions

  • In preparation for the activity, ask the children to collect some photos of their school and the classrooms in it. The teacher may also contribute some photos to the gallery.
  • To start the activity, the children watch the gallery, and write down:
    • three things they like about their school environment;
    • two things they might change;
    • one thing they don’t like about their school environment.
  • Stimulate a brief discussion about what the children have seen and written. Some questions that could be used are:
    • Is your school friendly?
    • Do you like the way the classes are organised, most of the time, in your school?
    • Are the lessons varied and engaging?
    • Do you learn something new every day in your classes?
    • If you were a teacher, what would you do to make your children more motivated to study?

    Summarise the ideas that emerge.

  • Ask the children to draw or to create a comic or cartoon in which they present their ideal school. Display the products either on a common online wall or put them together to create a brochure or magazine.
  • Ask the children to consider the presentations that other members of their class have made, and to evaluate how practical or realistic they are.
  • Summarise the children’s ideas about how important it is to learn in a safe and pleasant environment.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Ask the children to comment on and discuss the learning process and the results that they have achieved. In addition, ask them to reflect on what they have learned as a result of the activity.
  • Hold a debriefing session by asking some of the following questions:
    • What kind of experience was it for you to imagine your ideal school?
    • Has anything changed in your thinking after hearing about your friends’ ideas concerning their ideal school?
    • Did you learn anything about yourself?
    • Do you think your school is going to change, and if so, how?


13 For example, Google photos

14 https://www.mentimeter.com, https://www.tricider.com

15 https://wheelofnames.com

16 https://www.powtoon.com, https://www.makebeliefscomix.com/

17 https://www.pearltrees.com

A6@M0 – FREE TO SPEAK

Aim

On completion of this activity, children will be able:

  • To engage well with other people who have a variety of different points of view
  • To seek out discussions with people whose ideas and values are different from their own
  • To listen carefully to differing opinions
  • To share their own ideas and resources with others
  • To show appreciation of and consideration for other group members
  • To understand their friends better by imagining how things look from their perspective
  • To describe feelings identified by other people
  • To express sympathy for other people’s misfortunes

Source of the activity

Contributed by Kari Kivinen (Free-to-speak-safe-to-learn)

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Tolerance of ambiguity
  • Skills of listening and observing
  • Co-operation skills
  • Empathy

Overview

Materials

  • A role game story (or any other relevant text)
  • A constructive dialogue method adapted from the Finnish Timeout project, which is a new method for generating constructive discussions. Constructive discussion tools and conversation cards from the Timeout project for use by the facilitator12
  • A facilitator who takes care of the constructiveness of the discussion (teacher, school psychologist, social worker, or educator)

Step-by-step instructions

  • The session takes 60-75 minutes. The groups should have a maximum of 25 participants. A group of 12-15 children is ideal.
  • The facilitator organises a calm and safe place for the discussion. The chairs should be in a circle, so that everybody can see each other. It is also possible to do the exercise online (for special instructions, see the Timeout project website).
  • The facilitator begins by explaining the rules of constructive discussion. Pupils should:
    • LISTEN to others and not interrupt the speaker.
    • RELATE their comments to what others have said.
    • TELL about their own experiences.
    • RESPECT others and the confidentiality of the discussion.
  • The facilitator reads out the first part of the role game story. Then the floor is given to all the children. The facilitator points out that everybody has an opportunity to express themselves, and the facilitator encourages everybody to express their own ideas and experiences.
  • After the first part, the facilitator reads the second part of the story, and opens the discussion again, and so on.
  • At any time, the facilitator can request the children have smaller group discussion to find common views (pair discussions, small group discussions etc.) which will then be presented to others.
  • At the end of the session, the facilitator wraps up the discussion and asks everyone to write down on a post-it note the most important things they remember about the discussion. The facilitator shares the anonymous answers with the rest of the group.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • It is important that in the end of the session the facilitator asks questions about the dialogue process. The following questions may be asked:
    • How did the children feel about the dialogue?
    • Was it easy to express their views?
    • Was the discussion constructive?
    • Did their understanding of the topic increase?
    • Should there be similar types of discussions about other sensitive topics?
    • Which ones?

An example of role game story


12 https://www.timeoutdialogue.fi/whats-timeout-about/

AN EXAMPLE OF ROLE GAME STORY

In spring 2020, all the world was surprised by the Covid-19 virus.

M/S Victory cruise ship goes from one tourist attraction to another. The passengers are happy tourists of all ages from many countries. There are families with young children, a group of elderly scientists having an important science conference, some politicians, and a very famous pop-band (with over 8 million Instagram followers) entertaining the passengers.

One morning there is a long queue in front of the cabin of the ship doctor. Many of the passengers have had similar symptoms. The doctor quickly analyses the situation and declares that the Covid-19 virus has infected many of the passengers. He cannot do anything else than to declare 14 days of quarantine for all passengers and ask for medical help.

The passengers feel that they are prisoners in the ferry. The cabins are not very big, and people are worried about their health and about the long and boring quarantine period. How to spend 14 days in these conditions? Especially families with children are very preoccupied.

 

First discussion round: Imagine that you are a passenger in that ship. What would you feel and do in a similar situation? Do you have personal experiences to share from the Covid-19 period?

There are more and more cases coming up. In fact, nearly all the passengers have some symptoms. They are very worried. What would happen to them? Rumours start to circulate. Some passengers are supposed to have special rights, better food, and other advantages. Questions are raised: who is the origin of the disease? Passengers start to blame each other, and the atmosphere becomes toxic. Especially one family with two school aged children – coming from a country where Covid-19 is known to be a problem – is a target of accusations.

 

Second discussion round: What is your personal view of the situation. How would you behave in a similar situation? What should you/the captain do in order to improve the atmosphere?

Finally, there is a piece of good news. A rescue helicopter could take a limited number of passengers to the mainland and hospital. The passengers start to dispute how to choose the lucky ones.

There is a new problem. How to choose the 10 lucky ones to be rescued in the first place? Young children, elderly scientists and other risk group persons, the members of the famous pop-band, important politicians, or the most affected patients?

 

Third discussion round: What would you propose and why?

The time passes slowly. Luckily all the passengers recover and after two weeks all the passengers are given permission to leave the ferry.

People are pleased but there is also a bit of a bittersweet feeling in the air. During the quarantine, many new friendships were made, and passengers had formed a strange attachment to each other and to the special situation, which they would remember for the rest of their lives. Many things in the world outside the ferry are still unclear.

 

Fourth discussion round: What positive memories do you have of the Covid-19 period? What new things did you learn during the isolation period?

A5@M0 – DEALING WITH EMOTIONS DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

Aim

On completion of this activity, children will be able:

  • to reflect on the impact of Covid-19 on human emotions
  • to identify the main feelings and emotions that they have experienced
  • to engage in critical thinking
  • to understand others better by imagining how things look from their perspective

Source of the activity

Contributed by Cornelia Melcu (Free-to-speak-safe-to-learn)

Competences targeted by the activity

  • Civic-mindedness
  • Self-efficacy
  • Analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Empathy
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the self
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world

Overview

Materials

  • Videos about emotions and feelings10
  • An online brainstorming tool11. In the case of young children, the teacher can prepare the poll in advance
  • A story about how people come together, find creative solutions to difficult problems, and overcome adversity during the epidemic

Step-by-step instructions

  • Show a short video about emotions and feelings in the children’ own language. The video should show the feelings and emotions through animated pictures and scenes that help children understand feelings better and express them correctly. Make sure that the video is from an official or authoritative source.
  • Brainstorming: Ask the children to think about an emotion or feeling they have had during the pandemic. The answers should be collected on a whiteboard or using an online tool.
  • Ask the children to:
    • identify from the list 3 emotions or feelings they consider to be positive;
    • identify from the list 3 emotions or feelings they consider to be negative;
    • think why they assigned the emotions or feelings to the positive or negative category.
  • Instigate a sense-making discussion by providing questions where the children can process critical events connected to the Covid-19 pandemic at an emotional level. To do this, the following questions may be used, together with any others that are judged to be useful for stimulating the children’s thinking:
    • How did you feel during the lockdown?
    • Why did you feel like that?
    • Have you talked to someone about that?
  • Tell a story about how people come together, find creative solutions to difficult problems, and overcome adversity during the pandemic. Talking about these stories can be healing and reassuring to children and adults alike.
  • Summarise the main ideas of the story about how it is important to keep together and to be responsible in order to keep other people and the community safe and healthy. Explain to the children that the responses to stressful events are unique and varied, and how other people can help by showing empathy and patience.

Debriefing and Evaluation

  • Hold a debriefing session based on some of the following questions:
    • What kind of experience was it for you to identify the emotions and feelings you experienced during the pandemic? For example, was it easy or difficult? What sorts of things did you think about when you were deciding which one to choose?
    • Has anything changed in your thinking after you found out which emotions and feelings your friends had identified during this activity?
    • What have you learned about yourself as a result of doing this activity?
    • What have you learned about the world as a result of doing this activity?


10 https://youtu.be/7uY2HrQ9qQ8

11 https://answergarden.ch

The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.