Lifelong Learning Programme

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Success Stories

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Intercultural Module: Kinga's story
High Secondary School
Integration of immigrants students
Please describe:
-main actors involved:
Mrs Sylwia Tomasik: mother of Daniel Severi, Mrs Laura Ciampini: teacher at the Institute Polo "L.Bianciardi" in Grosseto; foreign students: Kinga Klekot, IB, Michal Slowiena, VC and their respective classes.
-when, where and how the story took place:
In September 2012 I was contacted by Mrs Ciampini to help in activating the module: "The story of Princess Kinga. A multidisciplinary module dedicated to Intercultural issues”. The teacher explained to me that the activity is one of the institute's initiatives to promote intercultural dialogue and I willingly gave my contribution. The aim was to create an illustrated book on Princess Kinga.
The idea was originated in the early days of school, when a Polish student, Kinga Klekot, told the teacher, quite interested indeed, the origin of her name connected to the devotion of St. Kinga.
I knew the story well, but I didn’t have a text, nor is there an Italian version of the fairy tale. For this reason I wrote to my parents - who live in the countryside of Krakow. They purchased and then sent a book of Polish fairy tales, among which was that of Kinga. This, actually, is not only one of the most famous legends of my country, but it is particularly popular in Krakow because it is located just near the salt mine made arise by the princess. For us students to visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine was a must, and I still remember with longing when I went there during my years at the primary school.

- The reasons why the story can be considered successful:
I have realized that, in the last few years, many Polish families have settled in the city of Grosseto, but to preserve our language and traditions becomes more and more complicated, especially for our children who were born in Italy.
With this experience I had the pleasure to see how – thanks to some teachers - there is an interest to know our traditions working on them at school and presenting them to our children and to Italian students.
I also liked the idea of reading the text in the original language in the classroom, so that Italian students were able to experience the same difficulties that our children have at the beginning, studying in a language that isn’t their own, and maybe this helps in mutual understanding.
I know that early next June the work will be presented at the " Book and Intercultural Festival” at the primary school “G. Marconi” in Grosseto, and it will be tested at a nursery and a primary school. On these occasions, along with the teacher and the students, we will tell the story of Princess Kinga and we will also arrange workshops (The virtues of salt, the use of salt in different people and Grosseto: a Salt City). There will be used exactly the Wieliczka salt crystals that, in the meantime, my parents will have sent me.

- the starting point of student so that it can be understood clearly the measure of success
Kinga has been in Italy for two years now and she is improving her knowledge of Italian. Michal, instead, came to our school soon after his arrival in Italy, 5 years ago, and was helped, in the first period, with proper language courses. He has participated in various school Initiatives for the recovery of the traditions of foreign students, but it is the first time that he’s involved in a project which deals exclusively with Polish culture.

- Social and Economic Background of the family Involved (if relevant for the story)
Kinga lives in a rural area of Grosseto, with her mother and the Italian husband of her mother, Michal lives in Albinia, with his mother.
Give evidence of the possible explanation of the success

- Analyse the interaction between the different actors Involved
The teacher has coordinated all activities, doing research on the Internet, following the work in the classes and organizing the presentation of the project in other schools. Mrs Tomasik, who appreciated the commitment of the school to involve families, has given a valuable contribution by managing to get the text of the legend and giving her availability for its translation into Italian. Two Polish students, Michal Slowiena and Kinga Klekot, were however involved in the translation work, and the lady limited to checking the accuracy of the translation. The classmates have worked with enthusiasm on the project and they are now creating the drawings which will illustrate the book.

- Describe the action of educational policy, either at local, regional or national level (If relevant)
As pointed out in our Management Plan for Diversity - Foreign Students, the “Bianciardi” Institute has chosen to bring parents to school in order to implement the intercultural character of programming, by creating pathways involving all pupils and becoming common property and mutual enrichment.
Among the many normative references we would like to remind the CM 205 of 1990, which treats education as intercultural mediation between different cultures, or the CM 73 of 1994, which reaffirms the importance of intercultural dialogue and democratic coexistence, the document "Intercultural education in schools of 2000”, with intercultural education as a background supplement of the school POF (School Education Offer Plan), the Law 53/2003, which sets “the development of historical consciousness of belonging to the local community, at the national and European civilization” as the purpose of the whole educational system, and the Guidelines of 2006, which, even going beyond the European horizon, talk about a school “capable of exploiting the many local identities and, at the same time, of creating a dialogue between the multiplicity of cultures within a framework of shared values.

- Identify and describe the potential transferability of the experience
The experience can be repeated in schools of all levels and in every country where people work to promote human rights, the knowledge of aspects of other cultures and to highlight the links between different cultures.

20 December 2014

Final Partners’ meeting

The fourth partners’ meeting took place in Florence (IT) on 15 December 2014. The meeting had the objective to check the activities carried out since the third meeting of the project and share and assess the in progress results. A special focus has been dedicated to the presentation of the strategies to solve the case scenarios.