MANOS goes international – virtually

Fostering international exchange has to become one of our priorities, as students prepare for an increasingly international life, especially if they want to enter academia and do research. The eTwinning platform of the European Union facilitates finding and building exchange with schools across Europe.

In one of their last adventures in school, the English advanced course of Dr. Schein experienced how easy and entertaining such international contact can be. After exchanging introductory emails with their Italian peers, they sat down for a ”Kontaktstunde“ that deserves its name on March 13 to embark on a video call with students of Liceo Fabio Filzi in Rovereto. The students discussed volunteering in both Italy and Germany and compared perspectives. Apart from the
usual hiccups with sound and technology, the call constituted a successful first step in reaching beyond the classroom and talk to European peers. After the first inhibitions and language barriers were overcome, we had lots of laughs, talked to engaged and kind Italians, learned about Boccia, and realized how widespread volunteering is in Italy and that our experiences in Germany dwarf in comparison. It made us wonder why we are generally much less involved in our communities. In a nutshell, there was a lot of intercultural learning going on. Although everyone involved had a great time and would have liked to continue the exchange, the busy schedule of the last weeks in school did not allow for a second call. However, we hope to continue this exchange with our Italian partners with other classes. These first steps have shown how rewarding and fun ”real“ contacts outside of the classroom can be.

Autorin: Dr. A. Schein