The main aim of ITE is the training of future teachers who are called upon to work in multicultural contexts, to use ICT in daily teaching, to support communication and learning in a foreign language, and to work on projects to develop students’ key competences.
This year, the National Initial Teacher Education Conference took place at the University of Salento in Lecce on the 14th and 15rh of May.
The ITE mediators from different Italian Universities participated to exchange good practices adopted during the academic year and teacher trainers and student teachers (future teachers) worked together and shared feedback, practices, and plans to implement in the future.
UCSC joined the initiative from the very beginning through the experimentation known as “Teacher Training Pilot, a.y.2013-14”. Through the years, the program has seen an increasing number of universities and students: about 5000 Italian students who are using eTwinning in their educational path.
Successful support and mentoring in Primary education courses and laboratories has proven rewarding both for the teacher trainers and their trainees, enabling their professional and personal growth. The trainers offered well prepared learning opportunities as eTwinning projects and support trainees along the way in a reciprocal process of lifelong learning .
Teacher trainers need not only professional knowledge about the subject they teach but they also require social and emotional skills as well.
The Catholic University carried out the project in collaboration with Italian and European universities:
- University of Basilicata
- University of Molise
- University of Zagreb, Croatia
- University of Castilla La Mancha, Ciudad Real, Spain
- University of Hasan Kalyoncu (HKU), Turkey
There are several advantages for universities to take part in the training of future teachers:
- Internationalization: because eTwinning represents an opportunity to enrich and innovate the University’s study offer;
- Empowerment: through the acquisition of foreign language skills;
- Teamwork: ITE trainers and students will be able to participate in European-wide collaborative projects and events.
Adele Grecchi, a 4th Year student in Primary Education at the Catholic University of Milan, described her first experience in ITE, eTwinning as a positive experience of cooperative learning.
“Etwinning improves students’ motivation and soft skills. We engage in cooperative activities and problem solving.
eTwinning gives us the opportunity to keep in touch with universities and schools all over Europe. It helps us to develop spoken and written foreign language skills (English), to collaborate in international groups, and to learn how to plan a lesson in English for Primary school children”.
Elisa Ferla, 4th Year student in Primary Education, UCSC, Milan
Giulia Maria Pedron, 5th Year student in Primary Education, UCSC, Milan
Thanks to our National Agency for the opportunities, ITE representatives will be able to participate in any monitoring or research initiative approved at European level, collaborate with other national or European universities and host schools.
Marzia Luzzini is Teacher trainer at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan, Erasmus+ School Ambassador; Contact person for ITE, Primary Science Education at Catholic University in Milan; School headmistress at Montessori Como; English teacher, Counselor, author of books, essays and school magazines on pedagogy.