Four schools from Europe are working together participating in a project named “DARE – Democratic Actions Rule Europe” on the common theme of democracy, EU citizenship, human rights under the 2 horizontal priorities set by EC – improving achievement in relevant and high level transversal skills and social inclusion. The sector priority of the project is strengthening the profile of teaching profession. Successfully completed two Comenius projects, the applicant school initiated an Erasmus+ project dedicated to democracy and young people – the future of Europe.
The objectives of the DARE project are: to educate socially and politically active citizens, who will play an active role in democratic life, to foster tolerance, social integration and to enhance intercultural understanding which will eventually lead to more cohesive and inclusive societies. The participating schools will link formal, informal and non-formal education as well as social and voluntary activities in order to strengthen progress towards these goals.
Students, teachers and school staff will participate in the project. We will also involve students with fewer opportunities such as economic obstacles, educational difficulties and social obstacles.
We intend to include short term learning activities in the project as follows: collecting data and presenting history of democracy, governments in Europe and their role, Constitutional democracy and rights of the citizens, human rights, social solidarity, democracy in literature and music. Participants will be involved in discussions, case studies, competition, essay writing, preparation of posters, films, videos, group work. Participants will take part in Democracy and friendship evenings organised by host schools. They will have the chance to express themselves artistically drawing, through paintings, sculptures, songs, dances and drama, with the democracy theme throughout history. Students’ councils will organize participants at their schools to prepare artistic events, with the theme “Democracy and its role throughout the history of mankind”. We will use non-formal and informal learning in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Project activities will be integrated as much as possible to the curriculum, especially in the disciplines: English, History, Science, ICT, Geography, hoping that they will develop students’ skills and attitudes such as: assuming responsibility, the delegation of tasks to others, motivating others, problem solving, decision making, management time, use better and faster the ICT equipment, better presentations by using PowerPoint, better international information and updates regarding issues related to the theme of the project. Tangible results of the DARE project will be a book History of democracy; e- dictionary, Democracy in pictures and sentences – booklet.
Students will get their own understanding of the purposes and powers of governments and will take part in debates on the common theme of democratic school. They will present their views about rights and responsibilities of different groups in a school. They will get knowledge about the role of literature in the fight for democracy in Europe and connections between Democracy and European Literature. They will promote . “European Charter for Democratic Schools without Violence” among their peers and other school in their countries. Students will get aware of the right of freedom of speech and its importance in the democratic society. They will practice their right of freedom of speech at the same time improving their transversal skills and critical thinking, sharing opinions and ideas. Participants will be able to recognize different points of view towards the issue of race relations in Europe in contemporary society and back in history.
The desired impact of “DARE: Democratic Actions Rule Europe” is: increased sense of initiative and awareness in democracy issues; increased competence in foreign languages; increased level of digital competence; greater understanding and responsiveness to social, linguistic and cultural diversity; improved levels of skills for cultural expression; more active participation in society; more positive attitude towards the European project and the EU values. Benefits and impact for students from social inclusion are: developing friendships with a wide variety of other students, each with their own individual needs and abilities. Participating in the project will positively affect both their school and community to appreciate diversity and inclusion on a broader level. We expect our schools to strengthen their bonds not only to finish this project but also to carry on working together well beyond its closure. As said before, our schools are learning organizations and by getting to know each other better they will be able to share good practices at all levels in order to improve the service they provide to their communities.