The 2015 eTwinning European Prizes ceremony is over! We had the great joy to award the winners and runners-up of the best eTwinning projects at European level in a beautiful ceremony held in the Royal Belgian Institute for Natural Sciences in Brussels.
More than 200 participants, among them teachers and students from 16 European countries, members of eTwinning National Support Services (NSS) and high-level officials attended the ceremony, but they were not alone: more than one thousand viewers were also following the event from all around the world via live streaming and Social Media. Katrina Sichel, master of ceremony, presented the Prizes under the watchful eye of T-Rex Stan, a replica of the largest and most complete male Tyrannosaurus Rex ever known!
Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics, opened the ceremony by thanking the engagement of both pupils and teachers, and by stating that “eTwinning shows that teaching and learning can be more successful by using digital skills in a responsible way and by involving multiple stakeholders”. The Commissioner also handed out the winning awards for the three age categories and congratulated the winners personally, expressing his certainty that their work will inspire more projects and he was looking forward to reward more of them in the future.
Mathieu Bousquet, Deputy Head of Unit, Regional Programmes Neighbourhood East of DG NEAR handed out the Prizes for projects involving a school from Eastern Partnership Countries, an award given for the first time this year, to the projects My Alien Friend and FUSE.
This year’s Overall Best eTwinning project 2015 award was handed out by Adam Tyson, Director Education policy from DG EAC, to the project Art Connects Us. Anne Gilleran, President of the Jury and Senior Pedagogical Advisor, wished happy birthday to eTwinning on stage as the European Prizes Award took place on the day of the 10th anniversary of eTwinning, which also marked the very first eTwinning Day. Mr Tyson closed the ceremony noting that children’s’ life can change because of the hard work of the teachers.
Finally, like every real birthday celebration, eTwinners enjoyed themselves at the dinner that followed inside the museum of Natural Sciences and had the opportunity to taste the special 10th anniversary eTwinning cake!
So the curtain has fallen for the 2015 eTwinning European Prizes ceremony and we hope that eTwinners enjoyed themselves, but we are already looking forward to rewarding the 2016 winning projects next year!
*click on the images for full-size view*
The main Prizes are sponsored by the European Commission. There are three age categories (4-11, 12-15 and 16-19 years old) and in each category, a European jury chooses the winner and finalist projects. You can learn more about the evaluation process in the eTwinning Portal. Winners and runners-up in each category were presented and rewarded during the ceremony.
The first eTwinning Award (age category 4-11) went to the powerfulnaturekingdom.et project, for which the European jury commented that it “raised student awareness towards actual ecological issues” and that it “includes innovative effective pedagogical methods, which aim to encourage students to learn independently and involve use of ICT”. In this category the project Art Connects Us was selected as runner-up.
Soundtrackers was the winning project of the second eTwinning Award (age category 12-15), a project described by the jury as “A truly good example of how eTwinning can support virtual learning and teaching partnerships”. The runner-up project of this category was Interesteen: An on-line MAGAZINE for cultural exchanges.
The third eTwinning Award winner (age category 16-19) was the project etwinautas en las ciudades (in)visibles etwinauts in the (in)visible cities. “The project was planned in a methodical way and has a clear structure and pedagogical scenario”, the jury said. Runner-up project: Physical Awareness 13 – 14.
The Prizes for projects involving a school from Eastern Partnership Countries (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine) were awarded to the winners of the two age categories: My Alien Friend was rewarded as the winner of the age category 4-11 and FUSE for the category 12-19.
In addition to the main eTwinning Prize category there are also a number of special categories sponsored by other organisations.