Olena Pchilka Kovel City Lyceum

Address: Nezalezhnosti street 19, Kovel, Volynska region, 45000

Country: Ukraine

 School website


Project: Student Council President Elections

 

Working language during the project:

  • Ukrainian
     

Themes of the Council of Europe campaign “FREE to SPEAK, SAFE to LEARN - Democratic Schools for All” covered:

  • Making children’s and students’ voices heard
  • Improving well-being at school
  • Developing democratic school environment
     

Competences from the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture (CDC) addressed and where / how they were integrated:

  • Value democracy, justice, fairness, equality and the rule of law
  • Respect
  • Civic-mindedness
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world: politics, law, human rights, culture, cultures, religions, history, media, economies, environment, sustainability
  • Conflict resolution skills

Preparing for the Student Council President Elections students learn about and gain understanding on the topics of laws and rules, the democratic process, the voting system, the media, human rights. Students are given the opportunity to experience the values and principles of the democratic process in action: they participate in shared governance where they may put civic education and democracy into action, develop an awareness of good leadership qualities. These include critical thinking, analysing information, expressing opinions, taking part in discussions and presidential debates, negotiating, conflict resolution and participating in the electoral campaigns. Students increase their knowledge of political efficacy, campaign strategies and gain an understanding of the democratic process. In this way they become confident, tolerant, open and courageous to defend their point of view. Students reflect on and assert the power and decision-making processes in their school and government.

  • Linguistic, communicative, and plurilingual skills,
  • Knowledge and critical understanding of language and communication
  • Skills of listening and observing

Developing campaign strategies, preparing campaign materials, students create posters, flyers, posters, notices, banners, emails, e-board announcements, forums and web pages to conduct their electoral campaigns. Participating in these activities they develop their linguistic and communicative skills, learn to use sound judgment to make good decisions based on information gathered and analysed. Students learn to listen actively to others, work with and stand up for others, organise and deliver information appropriately, consider all pertinent facts and alternatives before deciding on the most appropriate action, regulate and control their emotions. They learn to express their ideas effectively in such activities as presentations, meetings, negotiations, debates. Students learn to use appropriate language schemes when they take part in presidential debates.

  • Cooperation, communication, responsibility, leadership, citizenship

Organizing a central election commission, discussing details of how to run the elections, election rules, posting policy and campaign plans, students take personal responsibility for task performance, developing a spirit of solidarity with others. They learn to complete a task in a timely and consistent manner. They learn to cooperate in building a team, working together, sharing tasks, being responsible for certain issues and supporting others. Working well in a team, students show their respect and empathy to others and have the maturity to realise that no activity is a stand-alone activity. Being engaged in discussions students develop their communication skills, learn to solve problems. They learn to take responsible decisions in choosing a candidate to vote for.
 

Target group age range:

  • 11 -15  and
  • 15 - 19
     

Level of education:

  • Lower secondary education
  • Upper secondary education

Short description of the project:

The project focuses on active citizenship, human rights, awareness of good leadership qualities, of human relations, of power structures and of how to operate effectively within them. Student government would not exist without students who are interested in providing input on institutional issues and serving as representatives of the student body.

The election process is still one of the primary means for students to begin their political participation and gain an understanding of the democratic process. Involvement in shared governance at the school level begins with participation in student government elections. Every student at Kovel City Gymnasium is eligible to vote for the Student Council President. It is important that students understand the voting system to be used and it is advisable to raise any specific questions with management before the elections are held.

The project includes three stages. At the first stage (October, two weeks), students organise a Central election commission, the members of which discuss details of how to run the elections, election rules, posting policy, campaign plan. All candidates register for the 2019 Student Council Election President and conform to the campaign rules as they are expected to, be familiar with the school policies and regulations. To be placed on the official ballot, all candidates must submit their completed petitions to the office of the Central election commission for Student involvement no later than 4pm on Thursday,22 October. During the pre-election marathon, campaigns play an enormous role.

At the second practical stage (November, 3-4 weeks), the members of the central office compile and publish a list of voters (in order to vote in an election everyone must be registered to vote), registered candidates ask other students to help with a candidate's campaign, meet with a group of students or use school website to develop campaign strategies, prepare campaign materials, print posters, create social media pages and create a Facebook page for campaigning, conducting presidential debates. Candidates are allowed to use flyers, posters, notices, banners, emails, e-board announcements, forums and web pages to conduct their electoral campaigns.

Their campaigns are organised for the purpose of promoting their respective candidates and the values for which they stand. All school members can vote for the candidates and each member has one vote per position. Voting takes place on 7 December 2019 (a Day of local government).

At the third stage the results of the elections are verified and announced by the members of the Central election commission. The Inaugural Ceremony of the Students’ Council president is held on 19 December 2019 (a Day of Gymnasium) in the assembly hall. The student Council President takes the oath during the ceremony and presents her/his speech during the Election Day assembly. S/he talks about the importance of the council body and assures that many more programmes will be conducted under her/his leadership to the utmost satisfaction of the school. The School’s Principal in her presidential remarks congratulates the outgoing student council president, expresses her wishes for the upcoming Student council president and his team to shoulder the responsibilities with human values, to make the best use of the council body, organise variety of programmes and develop leadership qualities.

The newly elected candidate begins working with the current Student Council leaders and attending their meetings to become familiar with the general Student Council procedures and the current projects.
 

Aims/objectives

  • Create citizens who value civic duty and understand the importance of engaging in political activity;
  • Provide students with opportunities to participate in shared governance where they may put civic education and democracy into action;
  • Promote fairness, equality of opportunity, and justice for all students;
  • Develop student potential and encourage them to make a well-informed, honest, interested and active citizenship;
  • Develop not only leadership abilities within the youth of today, but also leadership for the community, state and nation of tomorrow. In this process, it is also the objective to develop an awareness of good leadership qualities, hopefully, for a more informed, concerned and active citizenry of tomorrow;
  • Increase student involvement and school pride;
  • Provide a living workshop of democratic processes, through such activities as elections and participation in a constitutional representative assembly;
  • Contribute to the educational experiences of students by providing them with a positive involvement in the school, with widened areas of responsibilities and with more direct participation in organising and implementing activities.
     

Expected results/outcomes

This increases students’ sense of political efficacy, the belief that their political participation is worthwhile. Through engaging in student government elections as candidates, students are more likely to participate actively in civic and political life as adults.
 

Changes

  • Students who devote time and energy into their school experience through active engagement in their academic pursuits and participation in extra-curricular activities tend to take initiative, persist at school and enjoy higher levels of achievement.
  • Students who run for political office in school elections feel empowered to make decisions in the school setting and begin to understand their power to affect change within their own political environments in the future.
  • Students have become aware of their own potentials in making differences to their society.
  • Students develop a sincere regard for law and order appropriate to this democratic society.
     

Challenges you faced

There is little known about the experiences of candidates in student government elections or the students’ perceptions of the election process.

Young adults have limited knowledge of the impact of civic engagement and less confidence in collective actions, such as voting.
 

Time-frame of the project:

October 2019 – December 2019
 

Council of Europe materials on citizenship and human rights education used while preparing or implementing your practice:

  • Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture
  • Living Democracy-manuals for teachers
  • Democratic governance of schools
  • Addressing violence in schools through EDC/HRE
  • All Different – All Equal
  • Compass
  • Compasito
  • We CAN!
  • Human Rights and Democracy Start with Us – Charter for All
  • Freedom(s) - Learning activities for secondary schools on the case law of the European Court of Human Rights
  • How all Teachers Can Support EDC/HRE: A Framework for the Development of Competences
  • Multimedia Material (ex. video “Beat Bullying”, series of cartoons “Democracy and Human Rights at School”, video “Corporal punishment at school: how two parents decided to change things”)

Video EPAL Korydallou

Epal Korydallou

Address: Karaoli and Dimitriou Street 70, Korydallos, 18122

Country: Greece


Project: Digital Resistance

Working language during the project:

English, Greek
 

Themes of the Council of Europe campaign “FREE to SPEAK, SAFE to LEARN - Democratic Schools for All” covered:

Making children's and students' voices heard

 Addressing controversial issues

 Dealing with propaganda, misinformation and fake news
 

Competences from the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture (CDC) addressed and where / how they were integrated:

Knowledge and critical understanding of the world: politics, law, human rights, culture, cultures, religions, history, media, economies, environment, sustainability

Co-operation skills

Valuing democracy, justice, fairness, equality and the rule of law
 

Target group age range:

15 - 19
 

Level of education:

 Upper secondary education


Short description of the project:

Aims/objectives

 The project is called “Digital Resistance” and focuses on the necessity of teaching students how to protect themselves against digital “dangers”, especially fake news and misinformation and also how to create a responsible digital identity.

This program’s goal was to create a handbook for the teachers so as to apply new teaching strategies based on enquiry-based learning techniques and problem orientated tasks to enhance their students’ critical thinking skills and make them responsible digital citizens. Epal Korydallou contributed to the digital handbook for teachers by writing Chapter 4 entitled ‘Creation of a Digital Output’, aiming at providing both teachers and students with some basic guidelines on creating a variety of digital outputs after their work on deconstructing fake news using online fact checking tools in the classroom. Also, Epal Korydallou, on the basis of the teaching models provided in the handbook, created a teacher’s dossier with digital examples for deconstructing specific fake news on current affairs and lessons plans in Greek as a framework for the teacher’s training sessions that were conducted before the implementation of the project in the associated schools.

Students working in teams created several outputs varying from more classical forms such as powerpoint presentations, posters, leaflets, comics and videos, to more original ones such as small workshop campaigns on spreading out news to the school community, a graffiti in the schoolyard and a theatrical Karagiozis shadow puppet show, all inspired by their work on fake news and misinformation issues.

Last but not least, Epal Korydallou created a website (www.digi-res.eu) that hosted the activities and the collective work of all partners in the project, and an Instagram account #nofake.gr so as to initiate students to share their work with their peers in other EU countries where the project was implemented.

Aim: Supporting media and information literacy against "fake news" connected to indoctrination and discrimination

Objectives:

  • Promoting digital citizenship
  • Bringing the topic of «fake news» in classrooms
  • Sharing perspectives on «fake news»

 

Expected results/outcomes

  • Constructing a project website
  • Dissemination events / visibility objects to teachers, students and stakeholders
  • Teachers’ training using the learning methodology developed in the Digital Handbook providing with a Teacher Dossier/additional material / lesson plans
  • Dissemination of the handbook translated into the mother tongue to schools
     

Changes

  • Responsible use of social media
  • Develop critical thinking and digital skills
  • Strengthen democratic culture
  • Become a responsible digital citizen
     

Challenges you faced

  • Students’ resistance to adopt new attitudes towards digital identity
  • The topic of fake news was not incorporated into the curriculum, so the implementation time was limited and often the students involved had to spend extra-curricular time in school.
     

Time-frame of the project: 2018-2019
 

Council of Europe materials on citizenship and human rights education used while preparing or implementing your practice:

Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture

Managing controversy

 Teaching controversial issues - training pack


Video CEIP Manuel Foguet

Video Prosocial week Lithuania

Timetable

Timetable

November 2017 - November 2018:
Preparation Phase


November 2018 – July 2022:
Implementation Phase


June 2022 – November 2022:
Evaluation Phase


About the project

Video Students' Voices - School Gornya Ragdona in Slovenia

Primary school Osnovna Šola Gornja Radgona

Address: Prežihova 1, 9250 Gornja Radgona

Country: Slovenia

 School website


Project: "Students writing their own school constitution"

 Working language during the project:

  • Slovenian
     

 Themes of the Council of Europe campaign “FREE to SPEAK, SAFE to LEARN - Democratic Schools for All” covered:

  • Making children’s and students’ voices heard
  • Improving well-being at school

 Competences from the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture (CDC) addressed and where / how they were integrated:

  • Knowledge and critical understanding of the world: politics, law, human rights
    • Through the process of writing their class or school constitution, students learn about the content of a constitution, its meaning for citizens, and its role in a democracy.
  • Valuing democracy
    • Through the process of writing their class or school constitution, students learn about valuing democracy and put into action those key principles of democracy that establish rules for life in a democratic society. By doing so, they develop a better understanding of the role of the Constitution for creating and sustaining democracy, increase their competences in democratic decision-making.

 Target group age range:

  • 11 - 15

 Level of education:

  • Primary education
  • Lower secondary education

Short description of the project:

Citizens do not always fully understand the meaning and role of the state’s constitution -- one of the key elements of democracy -- because they don’t recognize it as a summary of founding principles, rules and values of democracy, which regulates the functioning of a democratic state and the life of its citizens. It is a founding document in which citizens can learn about their rights, the state structure and functioning, constitutionality and laws, etc. To address this problem, we motivated the students and teachers of our primary school to write a constitution for their class or school.

In order to present and simplify more complex articles in the constitution, we used an illustrated version of a constitution: Constitution in Comics. The main characters, Miha and Maja, present selected articles of the state constitution in a clear and simple way, through examples using everyday situations. During this stage, students learn about the structure and functioning of the government, human rights, basic principles of the democratic decision-making process… They gain an insight into the content, complexity and importance of the document for a democratic State.

In the next step, students compared elements of the State Constitution with procedures used in the school. In this activity, the teacher used questions to direct students to compare and contrast State structure and school structure, State symbols and school symbols, the national anthem and school anthem, the official language of the State and of the school, children's (students') rights and responsibilities, laws in the State and rules in the school, and procedures to change the State Constitution and school Constitution. This activity helped students identify the key elements that should be included in their own class or school Constitution.

During the next activity, students studied documents about Slovenian laws that regulate the Constitution, as well as articles on education that were discussed in the previous activity. Teachers guided students and, when needed, helped them search for corresponding documents (acts and rules on education, school rules, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Convention on the Rights of the Child, Act on Founding the School Institution, rules on students' rights and obligations in primary school, a syllabus for the subject of citizen and homeland education and ethics, etc.).

For the next activity, students were divided into working groups. During this time, the working groups narrowed their study to just one field or one clause of the constitution, choosing from general articles, human rights, state structure, constitutionality and lawfulness, or constitutional changes. They read once more the selected articles from the State Constitution and studied the documents that regulate these topics in the school process. They suggested and prepared articles for their class or school constitution. In this activity, the teacher reminded students to bear in mind that their articles had to be based on democratic principles, that they should be aligned with human and children's rights, and that they should be applied equally to all students. Working groups drafted the articles and sent them to the whole project group for adoption.

The draft articles were then revised by all project participants, who had the opportunity to suggest and discuss possible changes. Finally, they voted on the articles. If the majority of the present students voted for the article, it was adopted. The article could be rejected with the possibility to amend it by sending it back to the working group, after which it could be resubmitted for approval. At this stage, the objective was for students to learn and put into practice the key principles of democracy by setting up democratic rules or articles for the group, while modelling democracy during the exercise. They also realized the need to establish the rules one needs for life in a democratic society.

Next, the group wrote the preamble to the Constitution. The students read the preamble as a group, discussed it with the teacher, and learned about the meaning of its content. On the basis of what they read and the discussion, the group prepared a draft of the preamble, in which they stated reasons for writing the school or class constitution and listed its authors.

During the final step, students made decisions about the articles that were previously rejected, rewritten by the group and then sent back for approval. At that point, the class Constitution came into force as an internal document valid for all participants of the school process.
 

 Aims/objectives

  • Through the process of writing their class or school Constitution, students learn about the content of a Constitution, its meaning for citizens, and its role in a democracy.
  • They also learn about and put into action those key principles of democracy that establish rules for life in a democratic society.
     

 Expected results/outcomes

  • Students develop a better understanding of the importance of a State Constitution in creating and sustaining democracy, increase their competences in democratic decision-making, and realise the importance of including human rights in the document.
     

 Changes

  • The final school Constitution was the result of a project through which students, teachers, parents and representatives of the local community could search for information about general provisions of the school, school rules, students' rights and obligations, rights and obligations of other participants in school processes, and the school structure. The impact of the project and the school Constitution was positive. All participants of the school process accepted the Constitution.

  • The evaluation of the project was carried out in a survey. Project participants and users of the constitution evaluated the content’s appropriateness, everyday usage and role in developing education for democratic citizenship and human rights. The evaluation of the survey showed that the important articles – which were included in the school constitution – are easier to use when they can be found in just one document, as opposed to many different documents. 82% of the student respondents consider the school constitution as very useful in everyday school life. The evaluation can be further carried out on a daily basis by observing the students' behaviour in relation to their promotion of democratic values and human rights, insofar as they live by the articles and values they included in the school Constitution.
     

 Challenges you face(d)

  • At the time of writing the constitution, we faced several challenges and barriers. One of the challenges was to present the complex content of the State Constitution, its meaning, and its role to students of this age group. Fortunately, not long before the project, an illustrated State Constitution was published, which made it much easier for students to relate to the document. Students explored the role and meaning of the State Constitution through the process of writing their own Constitution and by accepting and promoting the rules and principles upon which the documents are founded.

  • Another challenge was the need to focus only on the most important documents, among the many that regulate school processes, and to search for possible connections with the State Constitution. At this stage, students needed to be motivated to tackle the large number of documents and information. It was a challenge to incorporate a variety of ways to write and approve articles on democratic principles, since through the very process of writing the constitution, the students developed and internalized the principles and values.

  • Composing the text of the constitution regarding children's (students') rights was also a challenge because the students did not fully understand the importance of ensuring equal rights for all. By focusing on their rights, the students often forgot the imminent connection of their rights to their duties. It was necessary to explain and present the history and content of the most important international documents in relation to human and children’s rights. The aim is to learn the importance of the documents and enable subsequent acceptance of human and children's rights, not only for their own benefit but the benefit of the whole group.
     

 Time-frame of the project:

  • One school year
     

 Council of Europe materials on citizenship and human rights education used while preparing or implementing your practice:

  • Living Democracy - manuals for teachers
  • Democratic governance of schools
  • Compass
  • Compasito
  • Human Rights and Democracy Start with Us – Charter for All

Technical School, Center for Adult Education - Additional material 1

Video Human rights at school during the pandemic School João da Rosa

Video project Student Council President Election

Video A deal makes a better school

Video Let's connect - Slovenia

It just takes 10 minutes! UNESCO & Council of Europe online survey: Student voice during the pandemic

Share your experiences and participate to the joint conference on 23-25 November
Open until 13 September 2020
Strasbourg 7 July 2020
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It just takes 10 minutes! UNESCO & Council of Europe online survey: Student voice during the pandemic

The COVID-19 Pandemic placed great strain on students, teachers and the education system. Part of identifying the impact of the Pandemic is to understand how student participation, or 'student voice', has been affected. Student voice can vary from simple self-expression to taking on a leading role in aspects of school life.


With this in mind, UNESCO and the Council of Europe have developed a survey, as part of a broader cooperation, to better understand some of the effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on student voice.

The survey is aimed at secondary school teachers from Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. The on-line survey, available in English, French and Arabic, will only take around 10 minutes to complete. So, if you are a teacher in a secondary school in the above-mentioned regions, this is your opportunity to give your opinions and share your experiences by clicking here

The outcomes of this survey will feed into the content of a joint conference to be organised in cooperation between UNESCO and the Council of Europe on 23-25 November 2020 under the title: ‘From making student voice heard to active civic participation: The role of schools in the digital age’ .

Teachers who participate in this survey will also be invited to participate in the conference online. Some school projects may be selected to be presented during the conference.


Past events

Conference discusses Education for Democracy under the German CM Presidency

Online 15-16 April 2021
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Credits: iStock

Credits: iStock

On 15 and 16 April 2021, educators from across Europe met online to discuss ‘Education for Democracy in Schools: Applying the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture’. The Council of Europe and the Pädagogisches Landesinstitut Rheinland-Pfalz organized the conference within the framework of the German Presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.

For the first time since its launching in 2018, senior officials from Ministries of Education and related institutions in the 50 States Parties to the European Cultural Convention met to discuss the implementation of the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture (RFCDC). On the morning of 15 April, senior officials took stock of the implementation of the RFCDC and exchanged information about the work their institutions are undertaking to strengthen democratic culture at school level.

In the expert part of the conference, the EPAN and other education experts and practitioners discussed the dynamics, challenges and emerging needs related to strengthening democratic culture in and through education. Schools from the Democratic Schools Network contributed to the discussions by sharing their experiences. The meeting also considered the role of initial and in-service teacher education at national and regional level in the implementation of the Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture (RFCDC).

 

For more information, please refer to the documents of the conference:

 Background note

 Programme

 List of participants


Join the Democratic Schools Network

Schools that wish to join the Council of Europe’s Democratic Schools Network need to fulfil the following requirements:

 

  • To commit to the Council of Europe Democratic Schools Pledge;
  • To provide to the Council of Europe information about their activities that are connected to any of the six themes of the project “Free to Speak, Safe to Learn”, any materials they use developed by the Council of Europe (available online) and RFCDC competences targeted by their activities by filling in the form.
  • To continuously aim at forming their School Rules and Regulations, including a commitment to respect and promote democratic values and principles, such as active participation of their school community members (in particular teachers, students and parents), and by ensuring that decisions taken in daily practice consider and respect the views of the persons affected by them.
  • To systematically use the Democratic Schools Network Checklist provided by the Council of Europe, appropriately adjusted to the priorities of the school applying it, sharing it with the school community members and organising occasionally awareness and communication activities.
  • To share information and exchange experiences with other schools on practices and activities linked with the DSN checklist.

Guide - Online activities at school level

Online activities at school level

 

“What do you think about our school?”

An online questionnaire can be created, using the DSN checklist, adjusted to every school’s aims and priorities. A small group of volunteer teachers and students will be assigned to design the questionnaire, and all students of the school will be asked to answer it online anonymously. The questions should be formulated in a student-friendly manner, corresponding to their age, and referring to particular issues and challenges faced by the school. A separate questionnaire could be addressed to parents. The results should be compiled and analysed by the group that has undertaken to form the questionnaire and shared in the whole school community.
 

“Can we do it?” or “How well are we doing it?”

This is a proposal for the organisation of online debates on crucial challenges faced by a school or a part of it. Every school can design their own way of organising the debate. The debate can take place with the participation either of students and teachers of particular classes or of the whole school, depending on its size. The debate may focus on challenges already faced by the school (so it will aim at the evaluation of existing efforts) or on new challenges (so it will aim at planning reactions and interventions).

The procedure includes:

  • a) a preparation phase (following assigning responsibilities to a group of students and teachers who are going to design the content and methodology of the debate),
  • b) an implementation phase, and
  • c) an evaluation phase.

The implementation phase will include introduction of the debate by the coordinators, presentation of themes, division in small discussion groups, presentation of proposals from the groups and possible electronic voting procedures at the end. In secondary schools, it is suggested that organisational responsibilities are shared among students, including moderator, timekeeper and secretary.
 

“We have an idea!”

This is a proposal for preparation of ideas by groups of students on particular issues dealt with or faced by the school. The school authorities in collaboration with students’ representatives choose an issue (for example connected with teaching and learning methodologies, creative workshops, development of particular skills and competences, organisation of a celebration or solidarity activities, etc) and then groups of students are formed voluntarily to prepare and present their ideas in a small video or ppt presentation or any other way they choose. The length of the presentations (e.g. 3 minutes) will be defined as well as the time of possible questions asked and discussion on the proposed idea (for example 10 minutes). Then the ideas will be presented online and teachers and students from particular classes or from the whole school will be invited to attend and participate in the discussion. The coordinating committee of the activity (including also a number of students) will be responsible to summarise the proposals and reactions and disseminate their report in the whole school.


Guide - Online activities at class level

Online activities at class level

“Class assembly”

Prior to the assembly/meeting, the teacher makes sure that the platform to be used allows students to work in groups (in breakout rooms) and to conduct polls/voting. He/she communicates with the students’ council or the whole class and they agree on the topics to be discussed, that should be as simple and concise as possible. The whole class needs to agree and commit themselves on rules of mutual respect during discussions taking place in the assembly. Also, they should agree that they keep confidential what is being said during the assembly, apart from decisions that need to be implemented, and that there are no other persons attending the meeting unless they are invited for a specific purpose.

At the beginning of the assembly, the teacher announces the start of the process and the attendees, introducing a short "warm-up" game, that allows the voices of all participants to be heard. Then, the teacher invites 3 volunteer students to coordinate the assembly, one moderator of the discussion, one timekeeper and one secretary. The topics are presented, and the class is divided in random groups of 4 or 5, where they will hold the initial discussion and elaboration of the topics for 10-15 minutes. When time is over, one person from every group undertakes to present in brief their ideas and possible proposals. The moderator with the help of the timekeeper assists the representatives from the groups to present their summaries and gives the floor to students who may wish to ask clarification questions which will be answered by the presenters. An exchange of opinions follows where interested participants can express their views.

When discussion time is over, according to the original plan, the secretary of the assembly summarises the opinions and proposals that have been presented. If the class needs to take a decision, a voting follows either with hand-raising or using the secret poll tool. Following the voting, the class decides about the responsibilities that may need to be undertaken, so that decisions are implemented and followed up. The last few minutes of the assembly are dedicated to evaluation, with a few words being said orally or written in chat space. Students are encouraged to express positive thoughts and congratulate others for specific achievements. The assembly closes with planning of its next meeting.
 

“Treasure game”

Teachers can agree with their students to organise a set of online activities in the form of a “treasure game”. The class is divided in small groups (of 4 or 5 students) and every group takes a name. The class discusses and agrees about some issues of common interest that they want to approach together and a number of activities that are going to take place. The issues that the treasure game will touch upon and deal with could be chosen following a class discussion. They could be linked with students’ rights, challenges, skills and competences, as well as with procedures, functions and practices of the school that are connected with its democratic character.

Every activity/task could use different means, such as:

  • Surveys
  • Interviews
  • Quizzes
  • Recordings
  • Social media posts and reactions
  • Memes
  • Creative compositions
  • Videos
  • Songs
  • Photos
  • Drawings/paintings
  • Short stories

The class can agree on a reward system for every task, through which the groups will collect points. They will also agree about the “prize” of the winner, which should be modest so that the teams do not become competitive but rather complementary. On a specific agreed time, the teacher can announce every new activity/task and the points awarded for the previous activity. The treasure game should end up with a discussion about the gains of the class that went through this experience and a celebration, so that every student who participated in it is satisfied and feels to be a winner.