Life in the 21st century means accepting and adjusting to a hypertechnological environment. This fact presents many positive aspects, but also has a negative impact on the way teenagers spend their time. Attracted by the complex stimulation of the virtual world, they have lost their interest in reading. If reading represented for the past generations a major way to discover, to travel to other worlds, to know the depth of reality in a symbolic manner, nowadays it lacks attractivity, as computer games and social networks occupy the 1st place in students’ preferences.
In this context, teachers want to show students that it is worth reading. This language skill helps them develop competences, absolutely necessary for them to become successful adults. Reading stimulates the minds and, from a neurological point of view, it is more demanding than analysing an image; it also involves many areas of the brain: sight, language, conceptual associations; it develops imagination; it promotes concentration.
From a scientific point of view (dr. David Lewis-University of Sussex), reading reduces stress by 68%. There are other benefits: it offers more relief than listening to music or watching movies, it broadens horizons and improves understanding.
We live in a world where positive models are difficult to find. Therefore it is important to show students that in tales they find models worthy to imitate or they discover proper ways to act in difficult life circumstances.
Adolescence is a difficult period in which children suffer a lot of changes (physical and emotional); they are in search of identity, feeling like arrows without targets. The lacks of education, understanding, communication and models have effects on their life forever. They are weak, easily influenced and transformed into victims for violent bands, neighbourhood gangs, bullying, drug dealers etc. This is why teenagers need positive models.
According to Eurostat, every year about 5000 teenagers from Europe participate at illegal actions. This happens because they live in a difficult period searching for answers to different questions about themselves and the world around. But if guided properly, they can find some of the right answers through reading.
The target groups of our project are represented by students between14 and 19 and teachers.
We decided to make this partnership because we want students to be educated, to know how to make the difference between good and evil, to find positive models, to learn that they always have a positive alternative, no matter how hard the life situation is.
Tales represent, in this context, easy but highly profitable readings, if we succeed in bringing them closer to real life. Most students read tales from an early age, but in time their interest diminishes. This happens because they cannot find any connection between tales and reality.
We know that tales become interesting when we find ourselves in its pages. We believe that, just like Romania, any European country has tales that can be reinterpreted in order to reflect contemporary reality, tales that contain contemporary values in a symbolic manner. We believe that tales can be re-read to show proper or moral behaviour to confused adolescents.
We intend to bring students back to reading and discovering models in tales, models who lived their life through democratic values, who respected human rights, who loved and respected peace. Each participating country has its own tales rich in European values. The aim is to make students realise that if all of us respect these values we will live in a better world and if they choose the right models, we can have a peaceful existence, respecting each other’s identity.
In order to understand all these, the students will write and present their own contemporary tale using the European values they have learnt. They will also create a poster to promote their European tale.
Analysing tales in accordance with European values, all target groups will realise that education is the most efficient tool to fight against violence, inequity, intolerance, totalitarianism, terrorism.
- increasing the interest in school through exchanges of good practices and intercultural experiences among students and teachers from participating countries (min. 50%);
- developing teaching skills among teachers through innovative reading approaches that link the message of the tale to the contemporary reality (min 60%);
- supporting innovation and creativity through partnership and transdisciplinary approaches (language, literature, religion, history, civic values) (min 40%).
- promoting the acquisition of civic attitudes and active citizenship among students from participating schools by reinterpreting traditional tales from the perspective of the values of contemporary European society (minimum 60% of target group)