The Future of Education

Edition 13

Accepted Abstracts

Teaching / Learning strategies in ECLIPSE (European Citizenship Learning in a Programme for Secondary Education)

Olga Bombardelli, University of Trento (Italy)


I deal in this paper with the teaching / learning strategies in the field of citizenship education reporting the results of a European Project, which involves 6 European partners (Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, Germany, Portugal and Romania).  

The project ECLIPSE (European Citizenship Learning in a Programme for Secondary Education), conducted in the years 2011- 2014, is a Comenius Project, selected and co-financed by the EACEA (Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency).

ECLIPSE adopts an innovative pedagogical approache. ECLIPSE partners analyzed different ways of working in the different national schools, selected the best practices and adjusted the tools in order to make them as much efficacious as possible, choosing the most valuable solutions, and linking the school with the daily life of the pupils. It takes into consideration the main surveys in the field.

The partners have elaborated a set of materials to promote civic-political literacy, critical thinking, and active participation to the society, a sense of belonging, responsibility of the own rights and duties. Competence in citizenship implies becoming aware of the own skills, to manage information and participation, to interpret media communication, to build independent judgment on civic - political topics.

The teaching material ECLIPSE gives several inputs to indipendent learning and active engagement. The seven European Citizenship teaching/ learning modules for students at the 8th grade are expected to be used adopting an interdisciplinary approach (Bombardelli, 2012).

Each teaching module includes contents, proposals for exercises, and activities of the pupils, links to further learning in order to develop and consolidate transversal skills. Furthermore the pupils are asked to discuss some topics with their peers and with their own families.

For evaluation of the achieved results ECLIPSE uses qualitative and quantitative approaches, collecting data through tools as the Students’ Knowledge test, and the portfolios, to make explicit the competences gradually developed; it helps fostering metacognition, encourages to think about the own civic competence.

This project excludes acritical adherence to a specific model. It is never indoctrination, instead it is an effort for information, reflection and documented coherent decision making by the pupils, who are the citizens of tomorrow; the ECLIPSE work follows the ‘controversity principle’ (Beutelsbacher Consensus 1977), and supports pupils to think about controversial topics with coherent argumentation.  

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