Home / Premios eTwinning 2012 / Carpe Nuntium: voilà nuestra "FrItalianza" and learn Spanish

Carpe Nuntium: voilà nuestra "FrItalianza" and learn Spanish

2012  |  

Title: Carpe Nuntium: voilà nuestra "FrItalianza"

Educational level: Post-compulsory secondary education

Subject: Spanish as a foreign language 


For the third year running, the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport has sponsored the European eTwinning prize in the special category of Spanish Language. And, for the first time, no Spanish school has participated in the winning project. 

In spite of this lack of Spanish representation in the project, the Spanish language has been very important in Carpe Nuntium: voilà nuestra "FrItalianza", because, together with French, it has been the language of communication used by the participants: students from the  Niccolò Machiavelli Italian secondary school and the Lycée la Tour des Dames French secondary school. All of them wanted to highlight the Spanish language from the very title of the project, as Laura Carbonelli, the Italian coordinator explains: "a combination of languages which perfectly summarises the contents of the project and the challenges of the work. From the sense of the word Fritalianza, which comes from the monograms Fr, that is France, and It, Italy, and the word "alianza" [alliance], the students wanted to present the languages (French and Spanish) which they have managed to learn thanks to the "alliance", that is, the collaboration which has come about between the schools." She also explains how the topic of the project was also reflected in the title: "In the first part of the title the students wanted to reflect with the imperative in Carpe nuntium (from the Latin seize the news),  not only the common origins of our languages in the Latin language but also their intention to choose the news in order to analyze it and compare it with the final aim of creating their own news progamme." 

The students got involved from the very first moment, actively participating in each of the tasks which the project coordinators Laura Carbonelli and Nathalie Thibault Poblete, proposed. The first of these activities, to break the ice, was to make individual presentations of the students talking about their tastes in music, cinema, literature, sports, etc. In this way, by defining their hobbies and interests, the French and Italians began to get to know each other and start a relationship which later on would make it easy for them to work together. The fact is that this simple activity triggered fluid communications between both schools in the form of comments on the posts which the students made about their tastes in a blog on the TwinSpace. encuentro_italia_francia

The following step was to show the two schools, their staff, the educational systems of the two countries, etc. with the aim of getting to know each other a little better. This was not just a matter of showing photographs accompanied by brief explanatory texts, but they filmed interviews and published videos and guided visits with which they offered a complete picture of the place where each group of students was studying. The French students were later able to see for themselves the school life that their Italian companions had shown them. This was possible thanks to the project logo, which won the competition Poste ta carte pour les 5 ans d'eTwinning! [Post your card for 5 years with eTwinning!], organized by the French NSS the prize of which consisted in welcoming the French students in the Italian school for four days. 

Other activities, like the description of the qualities, attitudes and behaviour of the ideal teacher, and the suggestions and debate in a forum of their own ideas for improving school life, were a source of motivation for the students, a stimulus for reflection on the part of the teachers on their teaching methods, as well as the improvement and adaptation of these methods to their students. In short, an authentic model of an educational community in which all the members actively participate and receive feedback on their performance in the actions of the different groups. 

After this intense stage of introducing the people and schools involved, they began to enter into the world of journalism. In the first place, and in different forums, they talked about the topics that most interested them and the media which they preferred for getting information. Then they analyzed real news items, even from different countries and contrasted the news among the different media. It is important to highlight here the effort which the French and Italian students made to look for the news, make a selection and understand current information in a foreign language, Spanish. The fact is that in this part of the project Spain was very important, not only because of the language but also in the information sources consulted.  

It is important to underline the educational character of the project with regard to the values and attitudes which were implied in this work, as learning and practising the Spanish language was combined with all the possibilities which the media bring to education. In this way, going over each of the sections of the general press, they dealt with a multitude of topics which were at the forefront of the news. They were thus able to discuss the use of the burka and the nigab and the current legislation on this aspect in France, the more and more frequent mass killings in American schools, the Spanish penal code... In the words of one of the partner teachers, "with this aim the students have read, listened to, written and explained different news items from the Spanish and French news programmes in the forum and the TwinSpace blog. This was the main educational challenge for us, to help the students to have a more critical attitude to the news and a greater social conscience and civic sense of responsibility". The following video shows an excellent presentation by the students of the same news item given on the French and Spanish news reports, as well as the difference they observed in each one:

The development of the ability to analyze, investigate and criticize using the above-mentioned activities, helped them to delve deeper into the European topics of 2010 and 2011:  the fight against poverty and social exclusion, in the first year, and volunteering in the second. Starting with the search for information on the Internet, they built up their knowledge on both topics to be able later on to interview some relevant people and become aware of the problems of social integration. In this way they acquired the ability to offer informed opinions about volunteering and the functions of the different organizations in helping the most socially deprived. As a result of this research, some of the Italian students decided to collaborate with an association in teaching Italian to foreigners. 

But without doubt the highlight of the project is their own news programme recorded by the students from both countries. The French school had previously invited and interviewed a journalist from one of the most popular French radio stations, in Spanish. The interview was recorded and shared with the Italian students so that they could also get to know the qualities which are required for a journalistic career, the work conditions and equipment, the advantages and disadvantages of the profession, etc.  Laura Carbonelli summarises the results as follows: "following the model and structure of several news programmes, they have created their own news programme working in a team, organizing themselves, each one interpreting a role: director, presenter, reporter, journalist, staging director, editor, etc.; speaking in correct Spanish and French on specific contents which were not always easy to understand and explain, improving at the same time their use of technology to create the news report from their own imagination."

In conclusion, Carpe Nuntium: voilà nuestra "FrItalianza" has implemented an innovative methodology with which French and Italian students have been able to achieve a B1/B2 level in Spanish according to the common European framework, one of the objectives that the partner teachers had set for them. From here we would like to share with all of you this well deserved European eTwinning winning project in the special category of Spanish language.


TwinSpace: http://new-twinspace.etwinning.net/web/p32960/welcome

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