Panel Discussion: (More) Reflections on eTwinning

The second part of the panel discussion with Márta Hunya, Bettina Zeidler, Conor Galvin and Pieter Hogenbirk, continued with the audience voting and the panel reflecting on and discussing the results.

The audience was asked to choose the most relevant advantage of eTwinning for them personally out of 5 suggestions (see picture below).  50.6% of the audience answered that the most relevant advantage of eTwinning for them is the positive impact on pupils skills or motivation to learn. The second most favoured choice was being involved in an international teaching community (20.4%).

Photo: Antje Schmidt

Photo: Antje Schmidt

The panel viewed this as a good result, as it means that teachers put their pupils first. The panel discussion moderator, Riina Vuorikari, then pointed out that these five alternatives were actually the results in the recent Impact Study on eTwinning.

Also the last voting task was linked to the Impact Study on eTwinning. Teachers in the audience were asked to answer if they were surprised to hear that pupils, according to the study, rated improvement in using the computer lower than all other impacts due to their pre-existing confidence in using ICT tools.

Photo: Antje Schmidt

Photo: Antje Schmidt

Of the primary school teachers, 51.9% were not surprised by that statement, while 22.2% said they in fact were surprised. 26.7% did not  comment. The voting results of teachers other than primary, largely correlated with these, and can be seen on the picture left.

Overall the panel was not surprised over this result, based on the fact that the tools used in eTwinning are tools used in everyday life – tools that pupils indeed may know from before.

At the end of the session, the panel was asked what their wishes are for eTwinning in the future: Bettina Zeidler mentioned the involvement of pupils as her wish, while Márta Hunya emphazised creativity. Pieter Hogenbirk shared  his plans to develop his school into the best whole school eTwinning school and challenged everyone to do the same. Conor Galvin’s wish included new technology and the use of web 2.0. He also pointed out that teachers are the heart of eTwinning and hoped that that continues to be the focus in the programme.

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