eTwinning asks, “What does active citizenship mean to you?” at #eTconf15

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eTwinning visited the many workshop during #eTconf15

eTwinning visited the many workshop during #eTconf15

During the 10th annual eTwinning conference, eTwinning met with some workshop leaders to hear their views on active citizenship. The results were filmed and shared on eTwinning_Europe’s Instagram page, meaning responses to the question, “What does active citizenship mean to you?” were limited to 15 seconds.
The theme of the 10th annual eTwinning conference held in Brussels in late October concentrated on how educators can teach active citizenship and civic competences. The recent Paris declaration called for a strengthening of cooperation in education “to help young people to become active, responsible, open-minded members of society.”
Workshop leaders provided varied answers to the question on active citizenship showing that active citizenship can span in different forms and in different meanings. For some the meaning can be a personal understanding or feeling. Petra Bohackova, for example found active citizenship to be expressed in being brave and courageous. Valentina Cuadraro believed that active citizenship is a proactive attitude. Another personal interpretation of active citizenship came from Ania Skowron, who drew inspiration from a keynote speech on the opening night of the conference, for her active citizenship, is witnessing your dreams come true.
Some workshop leaders addressed the role of responsible citizenship, drawing on a concept that citizens in Europe have a role to build a better society. Workshop leader Lysiane Granse of the French division of Terres des Hommes believed that active citizenship is playing a role in ensuring human rights are respected and upheld.
Active citizenship to some also encompassed some respect of empowerment. Kamila Bazikova believed that active citizenship means students are empowered to take the leadership to start their own initiatives. Mariella Fasanelli who led a workshop on the topic of active citizenship drew a similar portrait. Fasanelli rhetorically asked whether active citizenship is a concept, or whether it is a person; one thing Fasanelli does know is that an active citizen is a person who makes an impact on their community.
More short answers on active citizenship are available on our Instagram account. The exercise on active citizenship in these short interviews gave some discussion and reflection on the themes of the conference and also how eTwinning can play a role in realizing active citizenship. Many people answering the question did tie into eTwinning and Erasmus + projects as a tool for promoting active citizenship in students and youth in Europe.

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