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“Creative reading and writing – access for youth to global media”
Nelijärve, ESTONIA, June 30-July 7, 2012
Youth exchange project for young people in age 18-30 and group leaders from seven EU countries – Bulgaria, Estonia, France, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania and Poland.
Number of participants: 35, project language – English.
Participants shared knowledge, skills and national traditions in creative reading and writing, learnt together basic skills in finding stereotypes, manipulations and fallacies/media biases in media texts and in writing press-realizes and news story about own organisations and events. They discussed present situation in media with experts and make own analyses. Methodology followed the main principals of non-formal education in Europe. Main approaches were experiential learning, intercultural learning, active participation and group dynamics. There were team building activities, presentations, group work and reflections of the days. The practical output are group of young people and media customers – participants of this youth exchange, who know best access for youth to global media.
This project fully met general objectives of the Youth in Action Programme and promoted young people’s active citizenship in general and their European citizenship in particular, developed solidarity and promoted tolerance among young people from different EU countries, in particular in order to foster social cohesion in the European Union. Project promoted the importance of young activists and citizens as educated media customers who can influence and improve the situation in mass and social media, it will encourage young people to be active and participate in daily life of their communities.
Participants of the youth exchange had opportunity to foster mutual understanding between each other. Program of the youth exchange contributed to develop the quality of support systems for youth activities and the capabilities of civil society, it provided greater support for various forms of learning to participate and, particularly, in media. Participatory approaches were the main pedagogical principle for project implementation.
*space for inter-action of participants, avoid passive listening;
*respect for individual knowledge and skills;
*influence over project decisions, not simply involvement;
*participation in learning process;
*approach and attitude were more important than specific set of technical skills.
Participants had chance to introduce own organisations working in the youth field and learnt how to present them for other people during presentations. The project promoted European cooperation in the youth field, at first, for seven partners’ countries and in future for other youth organisations in EU.
As the main objectives of the project were, that by the end of this project participants:
• became active citizens who are aware of the issues concerning global media and have skills to effectively raise this awareness in their community and make media one of the most pressurizing tools in civil hands;
• have the skills of effective argumentation and basic expertise on the media, correctly describe stereotypes in mass media to other people;
• have skills and practical experience in order to use media tools and ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) in daily life in their local community and effectively act as multipliers of newly acquired skills,
• learnt how to analyses the sources and causes of mass media stereotypes, and know how to effectively change attitude of mass media in the context of their own community,
• are able to analyses mass media with the “critical eye” and have the skill and practical experience, as well as creativity skills necessary to write press-realizes and news-articles;
• have the throughout command of the learning materials and manual and with their help be able to explain the role of media in global world.
The main activities were:
1. Two days advance planning visit (March 30 - April 1, 2012), where partners presented own expectations about project and youth exchange, discussed program for youth exchange day by day, roles of each partner/promoter and preparations of youth groups and homeworks, they also discussed plan for visibility and dissemination of project’s objectives, activities and results.
2. Seven days youth exchange (June 30 - July 7, 2012):
• Presentation of project and youth exchange program with input from all participants: what were their expectations and personal contributions for each activity.
• Participants made common agreements for seven days of youth exchange (what they can do and what can not).
• Participants-volunteers created social team, teams of bloggers, ice-breakers, order and law team.
• Presentations of partners’ organizations and participants of youth exchange in attractive forms – on big flip-charts as advertisement for own organizations.
• Creative reading sessions:
a). Finding stereotypes, manipulations and fallacies/media biases in media texts. Work individually on presentation of the text analyses.
b). Work on media advertisement and discussion in circle about stereotypes.
• Creative writing sessions:
a). Differences between press-realize, news stories and articles, rules of 5W. Presentation of texts written by participants, questions and answers. Texts analysis.
b). Interviewing each other. Presentation of TV and radio interviews in creative way.
c). ICreating front pages of newspaper.
d). New media and discussion about solutions and new opportunities for youth in global media.
• Meetings with local journalists and with future journalists – students from Tallinn University.
• Presentation about YouthPass. Creating YouthPasses. Certification with YouthPasses.
• Intercultural evenings with presentations, games, quizzes, shows, songs, dances, food and drinks from all seven countries.
• Evaluation of the youth exchange by questionnaires and in the circle.
• The most frequent component were ice-breaking games to show how creative youths can be.
• Another important parts were team-building activities, energizers with the awareness of healthy lifestyle and coffee breaks with space for friendly discussions between all participants.
• As a result of youth exchange following were produced:
* a number of press-realizes and news articles based on the background of participants of the youth exchange, some were send to local and international media;
* a collection of training materials and manual about creative reading and writing, which can be used for future references and projects;
* examples of front pages of newspapers made by participants during the project.
This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.