In the “Erasmus+ Schule” eTwinning program, teacher education in Stuttgart and Ludwigsburg has achieved excellent international cooperation and has managed to become visible at the European level.
School students from all over Europe are learning together
At eTwinning, teachers, school classes, and teaching degree students can meet each other on an online platform and work on projects as a European community of learners. Learning English together with partner classes in Estonia, a Mathematics challenge with students from schools in Spain or France as well as reading a book together with school classes from other countries are just a few examples of the possibilities of this program. The PSE has been involved in eTwinning for years. Prof. Richard Powers, KMK-PAD eTwinning ITE Ambassador for Germany (the KMK-PAD is the pedagogical exchange service of the assembly of the ministers of education of the German states) and eTwinning Coordinator at the Professional School of Education Stuttgart-Ludwigsburg (PSE), is enthusiastic about the program:
“I was recruited in 2019 within the framework of the LehrerbildungPLUS project. The aim was to develop blended-learning courses in order to improve the digitalization and diversity skills of the teaching degree students at the five PSE universities. And we managed to do that!”, Powers is delighted to say. “The Teaching Award 2022 motivated us to apply for the ITE Award of the EU. Last year, we were among the top 12 European teacher education universities, and this year we’re the best.” The eTwinning coordinator points out: “Our success is due to the fact that we have implemented eTwinning into the curriculum, so that the students can carry out a project as part of their university studies before they become teachers. In this way, they can start their career as a teacher and are already prepared to work with their school students on international projects. To date, about 300 teaching degree students have participated in more than 50 projects. Only very few institutions can compete with these numbers.”
Overcoming boundaries and not seeing yourself as a loner
The Initial Teacher Education European Award 2023 (ITE) is rewarding the PSE for its work in the past years. Prof. Christine Sälzer, who is a member of the PSE Board of Directors and Head of the Pedagogy Department at the Institute of Educational Science at the University of Stuttgart, says: “We are proud and very delighted about this award, which focuses, in particular, on networking and cooperation in the context of teacher education. Overcoming boundaries and not seeing yourself as a loner are important goals for us in the teaching degree programs. We want to pass this attitude on to our students, and eTwinning is providing the ideal framework for this.”
eTwinning can be attended in seminars for the grammar school teaching qualification (Gymnasiales Lehramt) as part of the complementary studies in educational science and is open to all PSE students.