SUNRAISE

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Project name: Stem UNlimited Raise thanks to Arts at School in Europe

Call and programme: Erasmus + – Call 2021 Round 1 KA 2

KA220-SCH – Cooperation partnerships in school education

Ongoing project 

Brief description

The project SUNRAISE – Stem UNlimited Raise thanks to Arts at School in Europe involves 7 partners from five different European countries and it aims to tackle a set of serious problems affecting education, young people and the cultural sector in Europe especially in times of the Covid-19 pandemic. The health emergency with its effects on the delivery of education and its restriction measures is cutting down young people’s chances to socialize and explore the real world, causing anxiety, isolation and web addictions. It is increasing inequalities in accessing distance learning for students with disadvantages (both socio-economic ones, disabilities, special educational needs) generally reducing the quality of learning and school achievements, with a risk of disengagement and dropout.

This adds up to the already scarce performance and interest shown by EU students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM), despite the key importance of these subjects to develop the necessary innovation to face contemporary challenges. In order to face challenges like climate change, digital shift or health threats it is necessary that young people combine knowledge with interdisciplinary competences to solve problems, participate actively and responsibly in society, think critically and creatively, while at the moment they are more likely to be left behind. The risk is to grow a generation of people less prepared to face contemporary challenges.

Objectives

SUNRAISE responds to this situation by developing a set of training tools for secondary school teachers and educators to teach STEM subjects combined with artistic techniques (e.g. Geometry and Music, Physics and Dance, Ecology and Theatre, etc). In this context, the cultural and creative sector can give a unique contribution in developing ways of bridging creativity and arts with educational approaches. This approach will be even more effective for students with disabilities/SEN as the use of creativity and visual languages will improve their learning process even in difficult subjects such as science. Therefore, the project objectives are:

  • To improve teaching quality through innovative and alternative didactics that enrich STEM teaching with different artistic expressions, facilitating inclusive and participatory learning.
  • To integrate formal education with non-formal education by professional artists and artists with disabilities, letting cultural and creative organizations play an active role in the recovery by starting new collaborations with the education sector to build a resilient society.
  • To help teachers develop their skills regarding STEM and creativity fostering creative thinking and sense of initiative, useful to find innovative solutions to individual and collective challenges.
  • To help students, including students with disabilities, SEN and/or social and economic disadvantage, to handle the pandemic social and emotional repercussions through new opportunities of self-expression exploring contamination between STEM and arts.
  • To foster students’ awareness, relational and communication skills and their ability to think out of the box.

Activities

  • Initial analysis of the current situation in partner countries regarding STEM achievements by students and education methodologies in place, including best practices, and investigation of teachers’ and education professionals’ needs in terms of skills development and innovative teaching.
  • Development of the E-learning platform as a “virtual classroom” for training teachers and students which will host all training materials.
  • Preparation of SUNRAISE innovative training programme for teaching STEM and scientific subjects through creative approaches; the programme will consist in modules, each combining 1 STEM subject with specific art techniques and represents an innovative methodology to build curiosity and engagement, practical and creative thinking, with a special added value for students with learning and social difficulties or disabilities. The modules will be piloted by each partner in lessons/training sessions in secondary schools.
  • Creation of the SUNRAISE e-book, which will bring together all the research, pilots, learning and main findings of the project.

Expected results

  • an increased interest of students in STEM subjects and stronger inclination to undertake STEM studies and careers;
  • Improved teaching’s quality through innovative & alternative didactics that will foster the methodology of STEM teaching through artistic approaches;
  • increased inclusivity and appeal of STEM teaching, either in presence and at distance, addressing the needs of every student including those with a disability or difficult background or SEN;
  • increased students’ capacity to think in an interdisciplinary way and put in place creative solutions to complex and/or abstract problems
  • increased teachers’ capacity to engage students and reach out to them in a fruitful way;
  • Increased empowerment, higher inclusion and active participation of students, fighting the sense of isolation and fragmentation caused by Covid19 emergency.
  • Offer new collaboration opportunities among organizations in the cultural and artistic sector, schools, education and youth organizations, finding a new role across disciplines and real-world applications.

Coordinator:  Nazareno Societa’ Cooperativa Sociale – Italy

Partnership

  • Csi Center For Social Innovation Ltd – Cyprus
  • Stowarzyszenie Miedzynarodowe Centrum Zarzadzania Informacja – Poland
  • Esciencia Eventos Cientificos Sl – Spain
  • Theatro Atomon Me Anapiria – Greece
  • Soc. La Carovana – Italy
  • Zespół Szkół Drogowo-Geodezyjnych i Licealnych im. Augusta Witkowskiego w Jarosławiu – Poland

Duration: the project will last 24 months (February 2022 – January 2024)

Budget: the project received a grant of € 327.707