3 organizations were involved in this project
Dominium cultural hub - Skopje (North Macedonia)
Rijeka City Library / Gradska knjižnica - Rijeka (Croatia)
SOUEE "Konstantin Kiril Filozof" – Ruse (Bulgaria)
Dominium cultural hub is organization that exists for more than eight years and works in the field of social policies, education, art and culture.
WHAT WE BELIEVE IN
Dominium Cultural Hub believes that functional realization of human capabilities is crucial for sustainable development. Local, regional and global economic and socio-political state of affairs depends on the human capability potential and realization. Institutions, social groups and individuals should interact to provide functionalities for human realization in a manner that each person enjoys a productive life in line with one's believes and values.
WHAT WE DO
We, at Dominium Cultural Hub consider social policy, education, arts and culture to play crucial role in constituting individual, as well as collective identities and socio-economic practices, leading towards sustainable democratic society.
By using interdisciplinary approaches, Dominium Cultural Hub designs and implements activities engaging people in processes of promotion and enhancement of social policy, education, arts and culture in a critical and creative manner. Our activities include (but are not limited to):
– Research and analysis related to social policy, education, arts & culture;
– Organizing psycho-social, educational, cultural and artistic events to actively engage individuals and social groups in socio- cultural advancement;
– Increasing public awareness about the state of affairs and the potential of social policy, education, arts & culture;
– Researching, documenting, protecting and enhancing cultural traits (material, social and spiritual) in accordance to core democratic principles (including cultural heritage);
– Organizing, participating and promoting events related to social policy, education, arts & culture (including creative industries);
– Enhancing cultural and artistic craftsmanship and production with a focus on creative industries.
OUR PROGRAMME AREAS
Dominium tends to design and implement activities which actively involve individuals and social groups in processes of developing and enhancing social policies. The goal is to dismantle structural inequalities, providing opportunities and freedom for each person to practice one's economic and social rights.
Education is one of the core areas significantly influencing human development. Through its activities Dominium tends to promote and further develop the potentials of formal, in-formal and non-formal education in a manner that enhances functional realization of human capabilities.
Culture simultaneously constitutes the meanings and the limits to human action. Dynamic and contextual, cultural traits reproduce by pertaining traditional values, as well as, by creative and free social and artistic expression.
Rijeka City library is a central public library of the City of Rijeka and county head library for public and school libraries in the Primorsko-goranska County and one of the key cultural institutions of the City of Rijeka.
Vision of Rijeka City Library is to be the basic local community partner, the key factor for building free society of informed, well-read, creative and connected individuals.
Mission of Rijeka City Library is to support realizing individual potential and overall social development of local community by promoting culture of reading, lifelong learning, innovation, quality leisure time for citizens of all generations.
Values GKR nourishes are free access to information, cultural heritage preservation, openness, accessibility, excellence, professionality, will to change, truthfulness, innovation, creativity, tolerance and respecting differences. Rijeka City Library consists of 3 central departments, 6 library branches, 2 mobile libraries and common library and administrative services.
Traditional library services offered in Rijeka City Library like borrowing books, audio CDs, video DVDs and multimedia, reading daily newspapers and periodicals, and reference services and information searches are strengthened by set of library programs like Library Mornings for kindergartens and schools, Storytelling for children and parents, Reading Clubs for children, the young and adults, literary programmes, book promotions, exhibitions, lectures and debates for children, the young and adults. We often provide a set of innovative, sometimes completely experimental practice among Croatian libraries aimed to question the role and boundaries of contemporary public library. Our main strategic guidelines are (1) excellent library services, (2) promoting reading culture, (3) community development and (4) strengthening the library. Rijeka City Library has 60 paid staff and 21.258 library users.
Promoting reading culture is one of the key strategic guidelines of Rijeka City Library. The most developed and especially valued programs that are directly involved in realizing promoting reading culture agenda are our Reading Clubs it gathers participants around the art of words in literature and helps in generational and intergenerational connecting, enhances emotional state, develops emotions and empathy for others, it increases communication and exchange of experience, because they are the incentive for regular reading and critical thinking, it helps in sustaining perception, memory, thinking and concentration, expands interests, brings relief and gives pleasure in enjoying literature.
Participating in Reading Club encourages active reading on its own, even writing and reading own literary works. Rijeka City Library coordinates 14 Reading clubs for different age and interest groups, like Small Book-lovers for children of 10 to 15, Fairytale Club for children from 9 to 10 years old, Star DNA teenage club for lovers of fantastic books, films and music, Reading Club Magic House that has grown to teenage club from children club, Reading club of the Drenova Department, Student Reading Club, 50+, Mobile Library Book Club (Big and Small) and Incessantly Talkative.
St. Constantine Cyril the Philosopher Secondary School with the Study of European Languages was established during the school year 1961/1962. Initially it was the first secondary school with the study of Russian situated outside of the capital Sofia, and its name was "Maxim Gorky". Ten years later, as a result of the increased interest towards studying foreign languages, in the school were opened secondary stage classes with intensified studying of English, German, French, Spanish and Italian.
This is how The St. Constantine Cyril the Philosopher Secondary School with the Study of European Languages was born. Our school was among the first ones in the country where English, French and German were taught to first graders. Today the school is specialized in the field of foreign language education, and our team of educators' efforts are directed towards excellent quality of education. The teachers are highly qualified specialists who love their students and school, and provide creative atmosphere for the process of studying.
According to the school curriculum, the students have the opportunity to study up to three foreign languages.
Our graduates enroll at establishments of higher education both in the country and abroad and later work as doctors, economists, IT specialists, engineers, lawyers, in the sphere of tourist management, as administrative staff in different institutions in Bulgaria and abroad as well as in other fields of economy.
The students from European Languages Secondary School traditionally participate in international and national competitions and always take honorable places. The victorious contestants get attractive prizes including visits to popular European countries. These students are Olympiad regional and national level winners and laureates. The drama school groups performing in Spanish, English, Russian and German make spectacular stage appearance. Students studying foreign languages participate successfully in online contests and competitions and prove to be highly creative.
A priority of our school is the development of key competences: communication in mother tongue; communication in foreign languages; skills in Mathematics and basic skills in Sciences and Technology; ICT literacy; acquiring learning skills; social and civic skills; initiative and entrepreneurship; cultural awareness and expression. These skills are built up through both learning activities and extra-curricular training. The Secondary School with the Study of European Languages organizes a variety of club activities and intensively works on a range of educational projects.
The Students’ school board and the events they organize bring emotions and give significance to the school life.
A favorite and traditional form of expression and self-proclaiming are also the annual literary-philosophical readings, accompanied by the publication of collections with publications of the participants, as well as the victories of the school debaters at the municipal and national level. The activities of the Junior Achievement entrepreneurs are among the most modern and successful ones at the national level.
The school works on national and operational programs. They provide opportunities for improvement in its material base and extending horizons to young people.
The school also participates in a great number of Erasmus+ partnerships and eTwinning projects. It is the organizer of international scientific conferences and seminars, together with partner schools from Russia and with the assistance of the University of Ruse and the Regional Education Administration - Ruse.
Volunteer campaigns are part of the school life of the Secondary School with the Study of European Languages. By organizing and participating in them, both students and teachers express their moral support and empathy towards any kind of suffering of different people and establish a sense of humanity in today's world of alienation and indifference.
Traditionally, Bulgaria and our school take part in PISA exams and after the results are analyzed, the government plans measures for the students who have low results and also for those who have achieved higher score than average. National Programmes which operate in our school help students to have better results in functional literacy and improve their competences in reading, writing and understanding of written texts.
The new curriculum in Bulgaria which has been operating for six years already emphasizes on reading skills and development of students’ critical thinking and their active involvement in the lessons, not only on the acquisition of knowledge as an end in itself. Most of our language teachers have participated in training courses on critical thinking so they are competent enough to motivate the students to develop this skill in class. Students have to practice writing more essays in Bulgarian Literature according to the new curriculum rather than write interpretive composition. Thus they are able to think on the topics, share their personal opinion and develop their creativity.
Variety of extracurricular activities are organized to motivate the students, to help them improve their soft skills, especially language skills both in mother tongue and foreign language. Through their active participation in the drama club “Metaphor” (for students aged 8-13) and in drama clubs in English, German and Russian they learn “by doing”, learn to communicate in the foreign language more easily, to interpret concepts, to express feelings through performance and music.
We have two new “language rooms” in which the English and German classes have interactive lessons, study English and German using digital tools and the tablets and iPads we have at school. The modern space in which we do these lessons is a prerequisite to apply innovative methodology of teaching which inevitably leads to improving students’ ability to understand spoken and to decode written words and to fully understand texts. Once those skills are acquired, they become able to write accurate and coherent texts, to do critical analysis of printed material and afterwards to use the information as the basis for creative thoughts.
This is our fourth year of forming Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) in which colleagues cooperate on certain projects together with their students. Treating one and the same topic from different points of view, various aspects, through different subject areas in the integrated lessons in our school, gives the students a better understanding of the interconnection between things in the real world.
In the debates organized by the primary teachers, students aged 8-11, discuss real-life issues and concepts such as “Happiness” and “Friendship”. In this extracurricular activity, they practically apply critical thinking to all the knowledge they acquired from the texts they read, write and discuss in class in forming their opinions, making decisions, presenting their views in front of their classmates and persuading them in their way of thinking.
The Reading Kangaroo is another competition in which the students take part. It is inspired by the Linguistic Kangaroo, which is also held every year, and also by programmes as PIRLS and PISA. It gives the little readers the opportunity to train their understanding of written texts and on the basis of their results to identify their strengths and weaknesses and to form strategies for self-evaluation and self-control.
The teachers in the French department organize a Reading Marathon in French every year and the students also take part in the writing of Haiku poems competition.
What we try to do at our school is to find more creative methods of learning and teaching and to organize innovative activities which motivate students to develop their competences. Interlinking formal and non-formal education and integrating the knowledge from different subject areas leads to positive attitude from the students towards the process of learning as a whole and in particular to learning languages.
The teachers at our school are well-qualified and motivated to participate in various qualification courses, including Erasmus+ training courses. They have the ambition to constantly improve their personal skills and their professional competences to be able to answer the high demands of the modern digital students. The managing team is innovative and supportive and encourages the teachers to work in the best possible way for their students.