Fourteen years ago a group of teachers and Oxfam Intermon professionals launched Connecting Worlds, an educational proposal in which 127,000 students from 41 countries and over 1,700 school centers around the world have participated since then. Ten years later, the proposal continues to offer new subjects each year such as labor laws, climate change, migrations, peace culture, food justice, etc.
Connecting Worlds combines classroom activities and collaborative online networking in which the participants are students from different countries aged 6 to 17 years old. Work is carried out in a collaborative manner through an online multilingual platform whose content is available in 8 languages (Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, English, French, Galician, Catalan and Basque) and teams are made up of class-groups of the same age range.
"Connecting worlds goes one step beyond raising awareness, given that the students who participate not only use a critical mind to reflect on injustice and its causes and share their points of view with other students, but they also suggest and carry out action alternatives", says Anna Duch, responsible for Oxfam Intermon's Education Unit for Global Citizenship.
The teacher's role differs from the 'traditional' role in that it is more oriented towards that of a facilitator of processes, i.e., encouraging debates, inspiring reflection, investigating and discovering things with their students, etc.
80 per cent of the teachers who have participated in this activity consider that the proposal brings about changes in students' attitudes regarding the subject they have tackled and moreover, that it positively affects the relationships among students. The repetition rate is of 30 percent, while 10 percent of the school centers have registered for the proposal more than 4 times.
"Other teachers who had participated in previous CWs encouraged me to participate. It is a great way of instilling values - something which is not included in any of the other subjects' programs. We have all enjoyed ourselves, both students and teachers, while becoming aware of important problems". Silvia Navas, teacher of the Bérriz school, Madrid
Once the Connecting Worlds online activity is over, different cities in Spain host face-to-face meetings where students share the work they have done and participate in joint actions.