On Thursday 29th May, 14 students of the high school Istituto Tecnico Industriale Statale “Ettore Majorana” in the town of Milazzo, Italy, had the opportunity to test out the GAMVET Project. As the multirateral project, it is a part Leonardo da Vinci Lifelong Learning Programme within the scope of Transfer of Innovation and stands for Game Methodologies Applied to Vocational Educational Training. The accompanying documents of the project “A Digital Agenda for Europe” as well as “Europe 2020 Strategy” focus on raising the attractive elements of vocational training and stress the importance of acquiring the e-skills among the learners.
The project promotes an active learning in order to gain the useful e-skills and foster curiosity, initiative ideas as well as to stimulate the learners to think critically. Thus, VET teachers are working on developing games to make the process of learning more individual. One of the main objectives of the project is the integration of ICT-games-social-media in the curriculum of the learners in order to endorse new competencies and skills.
The project was preceded by a training workshop on GAMVET teaching strategies which took place in October 2013 in Milazzo. Thanks to the contribution of the presenter, Mr. Daniel Weiss from Inercia Digital S:L.Spain, the participants gained knowledge about innovative strategies of teaching. One of them was to use of the application of social media in teaching methodology. Simplicity, hero, completion of the mission in different stages, gaining knowledge and demonstrating it to the teacher are only some of the keywords of the strategy.
The Istituto Tecnico was the first school to apply the method in the region. The unusual lesson of science took place in the computer room filled with students who were full of expectations. Mr. Giuseppe Savoca, the professor of ABC at the Istituto Tecnico has taken up the challenge to get involved in the project and perform the online game. In the course of the game, students were supposed to gain knowledge about electricity in the process of helping Robinson survive. In each of the four stages of the game, they had to make an online brainstorming to produce electricity and other devices necessary for survival. They actively involved social media and hashtags while the teacher was able to follow and actively evaluate what they have achieved.
“It is very important to make use of the social networks and internet in the present-day education,” claimed professor Savoca. His enthusiasm about the project and willing to stay up-to-date as far as the modern technologies are concerned was to be felt throughout the whole game. He visibly motivated his students and vividly co-operated with them online, showing how important it is for teachers to keep updating their knowledge about the contemporary tools of instruction.
“I like the innovative way of learning, even though some teachers still do not like tools like Facebook to use them in the class,” says one of the students participating in the project. His and his friends’ satisfaction as well as the fact that the game kept the whole class active for nearly three hours prove the immense success of the project in practice.
The project fully succeeded to fulfill the mission of equipping the young learners with the needed e-skills which they are sure to make use of in the future.