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GRUNDTVIG LEARNING PARTNERSHIP PROJECT “A NEW CHANCE” FIFTH PROJECT MEETING 7th – 11th May 2008 SERRES, GREECE

For a school without borders with the help of digital technology

When trainers and trainees exchange ideas and points of view through educational visits or Internet, when the educational practices are diffused, then the vision for schools without borders finds the opportunity to be materialized and brings close people who speak a common language. The sensitive beyond localistic elevations language of human beings who are possessed by a continuous search to be upgraded professionally in order to upgrade. The language of trainers and in this case of adults’ trainers.

When people, trainers and trainees, tour cities of north or Mediterranean south, come in contact with people who believe they are distant, but they see them so familiar, rock in the hearing of new music, second in a language that they don’t speak, taste meals that are different from those they are used to, accept the warm hospitality of people that have just met, then they manage to speak the same language. The language which is far away from racial perceptions of people who are possessed by a continuous search to know and to be known in order to give.

Trainees and trainers of adults, therefore, all of us who were lucky to participate in the European Program “A new Chance”, reduce to nothing the distances, abolish the borders, moving daily among Lithuania, Norway, Italy, Cyprus and Greece in our effort to give in digital technology and education the human dimension that they ought to have.

In the context of Grundivig 2 Program “A NEW CHANCE”, which is financed by the European Union and aims at the fighting of digital illiteracy having as an ulterior target the normal incorporation of trainees in the society of information and their training concerning the utility and use of NT in the filed of informing, communication and increase of their professional qualifications, the fifth in order meeting of members was held in Serres, which lasted 5 days (07.05-11.05.2008).

In this meeting, 4 colleagues participated from Lithuania, 6 from Norway, 4 from Cyprus, 2 from Italy and many from the School of Second Chance (S.S.C.) in Serres. At this point we should point out that the participation of the Italian colleagues, who decided with their own expenses, due to non-approval of their further participation in the Program from the Italian coordination unit, to attend the works of meeting and express their interest for further participation, gladdens all the members.

The members during the meeting discussed about the outcome of Program, exchanged points of view and experiences for the practices of digital literacy and had the chance to get to know intimately the way of operation of the S.S.C. in Serres, to initiate in the Greek history and the Greek way of life, to listen to the live Greek music, to go for sightseeing and taste the Greek cuisine.

Restaurant
Presentations during the meeting
At the restaurant

Analytically: During the first day of meeting, the Lithuanian group which arrived first had the opportunity to make a tour in the city of Serres and visit the Archeological Museum and the Museum of Sarakatsanoi. In the afternoon, all the members arrived and visited the S.S.C. of Serres and watched by the trainers in a Power Point form, the retrospection in Greek history and the main aspects of today life in Greece. Simultaneously, they had the opportunity to see the exhibition of books and final products of literacy, laboratories and Projects of the S.S.C. Then, separated in groups, they attended the working of three Projects, which run this school year (creation of a newspaper, a performance and a fictitious business), while at the same time they were given the chance to attend the setting up of a temporary Radio Station of the S.S.C. Finally, during the works of 1st Workshop which followed, they exchanged their impressions from their contact with the school, made clarifying questions relative with the way of its operation and discussed the up to the present day course of Program. At the end of day, they had dinner and amused with the sounds of Greek folk music in a city restaurant.

During the second day, the members had the chance to visit the S.S.C. of Diavata prison in Thessaloniki, where the persons in charge showed them round and gave them explanatory information for the way of its operation. After that, they were guided in the archeological area of Vergina, which made them impression, and were taken sightseeing in Veria. At the end of day, they had dinner at a S.S.C. trainer’s home, where they tasted traditional Greek food (most of it had been prepared by the colleagues of S.S.C.).

Vergina diavata
In  front  of tomb of Vergina
At Diavata Prison

The third day began with the works of the 2nd Workshop during subjects were discussed regarding the platform of Program and the elaboration of final product in a e-book form, points of view were exchanged for the communication of members, ideas were introduced in relation to the communication of trainees of participating institutes, ideas were born for common Projects, the up to the present day course of Program was evaluated and the next meeting of members in Cyprus was programmed. In particular, the creation of Web Blog from the next school year was decided through which the trainees of institutes will exchange ideas and points of view in common subjects that will be determined alternately from the members.

In the afternoon, the following attended the meeting which was organized by the S.S.C. with the subject “The European Dimension of Digital Literacy in the Education of Adults”: Mr. Andreas Kaldis, as a representative of the Ministry of National Education and Religions and President of the Board of Directors of Permanent Adults Education Institute, the Parliament Members of Serres County, Mrs. Maria Kolia-Tsaroucha and Mr. Theofilos Leontaridis, the regional Counselors of General Adults Education Secretariat, the Directors of County Primary and Secondary Education, the trainees of S.S.C. in Serres and several interested persons. The members presented their institutes as well as examples of good practice in the field of digital literacy, which they implement. During the official dinner that followed, presents were exchanged among the members, who for one more time tasted Greek meals, danced and enjoyed themselves.

The fourth day was the day of tour in the most significant sights of our county. The traditional city view from the Castle (Koulas) was followed by the tour in the touching Monastery of Saint John the Precursor, and from there the visit in the Cave of Alistrati, the view of Angitis Valley and the lunch in a nearby village. During the last night, the members had dinner by listening to live Greek music in a traditional village of the county. The next day, the members said a warm goodbye and they returned to their countries, by taking away their best impressions and the hospitality provided to them by the S.S.C. of Serres.

At Saint Prodromos Monastery
At the official conference

Argyro Kokkinaki
Trainer of Linguistic Literacy