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Hey Oregon, Greetings from Italy!Andrea Mennella for Salem-News.com
18 American and about 40 Italian pupils exchanged photos, audio and video presentations, personal letters, drawings and reflections about their families, schools, local weather and had so much Fun!
(UMBRIA, Italy) - Dear Friends of Oregon! Ciao and Sincere Season's Greetings from Northern Tiber Valley, a beautiful place in the Umbria region, the so called 'Green Heart' of Italy. My name is Andrea Mennella and I have been serving as a Teacher in various Primary Schools of our Valley since 1996/1997.
Tidying up files and folders in a computer is usual for many Teachers, especially during the Holidays; this is how, after reading about Salem-News on Facebook, I revisited materials dating back to some years ago: with so much Pleasure! This is a little beautiful educational Story to Share our Joy and Gratitude for two dear Colleagues – Ms. Elizabeth Gustafson and Mrs. Brown Their Students, the whole Abernethy Community and Your Land, Oregon.
Elisabeth was a Student Teacher at Abernethy Elementary, Portland during the School Year 2006/2007. She was practising in the Year 1 Class with Mrs. Brown for Her University Research (how to use email and epals to enhance cross cultural understanding and recognition of multiple perspectives) and She asked me via the www.epals.com platform to cooperate in a joint Class Partnership. Of course I answered “Yes!”.
As an English Specialist at the Direzione Didattica Statale II ° Circolo 'Giuseppe Di Vittorio', Umbertide, I used to work in various rural and in one mountain School, devoting myself to open and enrich our Classes' learning environment to both European and International connections. I decided to let Year 1 and Year 2 Pupils of Preggio Mountain Single MultiGrade Primary, Lisciano N., Niccone and Verna Primary Schools to participate in the exchange, sure that it would be a precious opportunity to experience Global Citizenship with our American epals in Oregon!
During the whole Second term – January to June, the Classes regularly communicated mainly via email and also postal mails. Eighteen American and about forty Italian pupils exchanged photos, audio and video presentations, personal letters, drawings and reflections about their families, schools, local weather and had so much Fun!
The Project was a great success and an excellent example about how Technologies, Professionalism and the Good Will of educators, families and school communities can make us live closer, become more aware of who we are, develop language and communication skills, appreciate our World's Beauty.
This experience was also valued in various Regional Methodology courses die Umbrian Primary School Teachers of English. (2008-2010)
I would like to express my heartfelt thank you to you, to our Communities, in particular to Ms Gustafson, Mrs. Brown and the many American students and Educators who have been interacting with us in the recent years Thy have shared enthusiasm competence friendship in unity and peace and allowed me and my colleagues to become better educators.
Mr. Andrea Mennella - now serving at San Filippo International Primary School 1 Circolo Didattico, Citta di Castello (Pg), Umbria, Italia
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