Flying across borders

Over the last years, Europe has seen a substantial number of migrants fleeing from war in countries like Syria, to find safer ground in Europe. This has widely affected many European countries and really challenged our societies. Unfortunately, we have also seen an increase of xenophobia, which is a worrying fact. We belong to the European Union, “that offers citizens a space of liberty, security and justice without internal borders”. The preamble to the Treaty establishing a European Constitution recalls, among other things, the cultural, religious and humanist legacy in Europe and appeals to the self-determination of the European peoples to overcome their former divisions and build up a common future, still feeling proud of their own national identity and history.

This project aims to compare migratory movements of humans (migration, refugees, working mobility…) and birds (natural movements), to assess the value of borders in contemporary world. We want to approach the topic of immigration from an ecological, humanist and social point of view, emphasising the fact that all of us (not only human beings, but also animals) share a world which has no natural borders. Borders are a human invention.

With this project we want teachers and headteachers to find tools for organising the learning environment for students with different backgrounds. Learning about how to integrate (approach and methodology) students with different cultures in class.

Observation of methodology used in other European schools, for example the study of Cooperative Learning.

We want to raise awareness of the fact that migration is both necessary and natural for humans, in the same way as it is for migrating birds. Through this insight, we want to increase the understanding of all humans’ equal value, regardless of their origin or background and thereby diminish xenophobia. After this project, it is our firm belief that by gaining this experience, the school environment will be better for all students, especially our newly arrived migrants irrespective of their academic background.

In order to achieve this, we want to work with a wide variety of subjects (Maths, Geography, Biology, History, Ethics …) to have a global perspective, and make students reflect on the world they are living in. Having in mind that our students are digital natives we will make use of modern tools such as web 2.0 tools, augmented reality and different types of devices (smartphones, tablets). In addition, we aim to travel across Europe with the cranes, in their migratory movement from the cold lands of the North of Europe to warmer locations in the South, to help students in the partner schools to study the natural and human environment of the different countries which are visited by the cranes in their migration southwards.

We would like the Eramus+ project to be integrated and remain into the syllabus of our schools for three years, which will imply the involvement of a greater number of teachers and students into the project. The project will not be an isolated experience, but something intrinsic to the education of our secondary students. In order to achieve this goal, we are planning to create open and reusable educational resources that promote values such as tolerance and intercultural acceptance through the use of ICT. These resources will be accessible in a learning designer web tool and a printed version in every national language will be delivered to every partner school.

As this project will be carried out by schools located in distant parts of Europe (North, South, East and West of Europe), where this phenomenon is perceived very differently, we will enrich each other, sharing different points of view about this topic. Likewise, this project means a holistic perception of our educative mission, since it aims to approach many different personal dimensions of our students. We will work their ecological and social sensibility, their intellectual dimension, their tolerance and empathy, their capacity of getting involved and commit when working with others, and their sense of belonging to something bigger than their own community, country or continent.

This project is also innovative because we would like to include activities from different subjects (Literature, Social Sciences, Biology, Arts, Languages…), and we consider that this interdisciplinary nature is especially valuable.

We also conceive this project as an opportunity to carry out an experience of transnational cooperative work (work teams made up of students from different countries, connected thanks to IT), but also keeping in touch with the local reality that surrounds our schools to bring to the fore the human dimension of our students.