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SCHOOL VOICES

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Responding to the pandemic situation surely is not easy. However, creating new opportunities could be a valid idea to help us getting through this period. Here are some of the activities that our ReadTwinning teachers developed during the lockdown and that they are still carrying on lately. Let's get inspired by the ReadTwinning experiences!

Romania – Reading, a multidisciplinary activity.

In Romanian Schools the practical activities began right before the lockdown. When the COVID emergency exploded, after an initial a sense of loss, teachers understood that they should adapt and reconsider the entire situation as an opportunity to promote reading activity online.

The plan included both the humanistic and the scientific or technological subjects, and it proposed appealing and creative reading strategies. For example, Physics students – through the digital tools of Story Jumper or Pixton Comic Maker – could choose between imagining a dialogues with the famous physicists Pascal and Newton, or describing Gravity as a character who takes them on a trip to discover the laws of physics. During the lesson of Biology, students were asked to read legends about flowers and illustrate them with drawings, poems or comics. The English teacher suggested to older students to choose a book or a story and to change the ending, or to rewrite the last chapter, or even to imagine a dialogue with a character through the use of online tools. Whereas, for the students of the primary school, different activities were realized, such as: reading short stories in chain or complete crossword puzzles and gap sentences, in order to make students reflect more on the story messages and stimulate communication and interaction among them. The proposed activities were developed in a picnic like atmosphere: children were allowed to bring food and drinks from home or even familiar objects, such as toys or pillows.

Another very much appreciated activity, developed by the schools during the lockdown, was promoting reading in small family groups and completing a reading diary on any book the students choose. Sharing the reading experience with the members of family proved to be a good method to bring different generations together.

Portugal - Let's Read

While the Readtwinning platform is not ready to be used, teachers are trying to create small reading groups on the Blog "Let's Read", created under the Readtwinning project, about books already known to the students. In addition to this, books already read and analysed , in the classroom or at home, have been included, as well as many works done by the students about the same books, with the help of different digital tools.

A contextualized reading of books is also being promoted. After reading some Portuguese authors' books , during the classes, teachers and pupils will discuss them and will visit the places related to the author or the plot of the story. They have already read a story which happened in a monastery, near our school. A visit to the place where the action takes place is already being planned and will happen very soon. Actually, we think this is a great way of motivating and involving our students in the reading process.

Cyprus - When the lesson becomes an event.

Imagine a class where students sit in a circle. Everyone hold a box they brought from home (it could be of any color, shape or size). Each box is unique and it hides a secret story. Marina, 10 years old, is holding a small trunk in her hands. She opens it and pulls out a thread. Various small objects or images are attached to the thread. Marina begins to unravel the thread and the story begins… "Once upon a time, there was a rich merchant, who loved travelling all over the world. One day, while he was traveling, he was attacked by pirates…» Marina tells her story that unfolds from her thread that comes out of the box. Her classmates applaud and Marina is glad she shared her story. All students share the original stories they made. If the children want, once their storytelling is finished, they can also write down the story or record their voice, so that their imagination could be fixed forever.

All stories are unique: some of them are funny, some are dramatic, and some other are romantic. But in this way stories become bridges that bring students closer, and the lesson becomes an event of pure joy!

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