Comenius project ELENA -Experiential Learning and Education for Nature Awareness- has been making progress: on 20th to 23rd March, the partners of the project - Germany - Bavarian Academy for Nature Conservation and Landscape Management in Laufen, Rottmayr-Gymnasium in Laufen, Hungary - University of Szeged, Romania - University "Lucian Blaga" of Sibiu, Sibiu County School Inspectorate, Secondary School nr. 21, Georgia, had a meeting at the University of Szeged project in order to discuss the skills scaffolding required to be acquired by the students by implementing lessons with live animals.
ELENA is started. 26 representatives met in Laufen to arrange the comprehensive project program. The meeting was officially opened by a special guest star: hedgehog Hedgy. By means of Hedgy “Tiere live” –practice could be demonstrated directly: the enthusiasm knows no age limit. Living animals are a heart opener and everyone involved person was clear: This enthusiasm is the key to success – even for ELENA.
During the European idea has apparently suffered by financial crises, ELENA shows that Europe is alive and continues to converge: Scientists, practitioners and teachers of educational institutions from Germany, Hungary, Romania and Georgia are working hand in hand in the trans-European cooperative project, funded by the European Union within the program of Lifelong Learning/Comenius.
The Bavarian academy for Nature Conservation and Landscape Management (ANL) has taken the guidance of the project as the Leadpartner and provides the technical and pedagogical basis – from more than ten years of experience with “Tiere live”: Living animals are integrated into the school lessons and are supervised by the students themselves.
Whether amphibians, snails, butterflies, hedgehogs or recently also chickens, students should experience enthusiasm in direct contact with living animals, but also overcome reservations and finally take responsibility for their charges. Guided by the monitoring folder to “Tiere live” with more than 15 animal chapters and more than 70 individual actions described in detail, a comprehensive basis is available for teachers for the concrete implementation.
The project “Tiere live” was a central contribution of Bavaria to the year of biodiversity in 2010 and was promoted together by the former Bavarian State Ministry for Environment and Health and by the Bavarian State Ministry of Education and Culture.
ANL leads trans-European project ELENA
ELENA is a trans-European cooperative project of partners from Germany, Hungary, Romania and Georgia with the aim to promote the awareness of nature and the responsibility for nature. The Bavarian Academy for Nature Conservation and Landscape Management (ANL) is leading the project.
The technical and educational approaches were already tested in the highly successful Bavarian model project “Tiere live” in practice: On this occasion, living animals are used in teaching and are co-supervised responsibly by students. The aim is to bring this experience to our European neighbors for application, to develop them and promote “Tiere live” internationally.