museum-school cooperation for improving the teaching and learning of sciences
project partners activities and courses documents school projects contacts

SMEC is a European Cooperation project, funded by the Socrates programme of the European Union, carried out by a group institutions in Italy, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary and Spain.
The project is funded for three years, from October 2001 to October 2004.
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Aims and objectives of the project

The main aim of the project is to encourage the use of the museum as educational resource for the teaching and learning of science in primary schools, and to contribute to the training of teachers for the development of competence and expertise in using museums.

In particular, the project aims to:

a. encourage collaboration between educational institutions and museums for improving training practice and raising the quality of school teaching and learning;

b. develop pedagogical methodologies and resourses for producing, acquiring and applying knowledge in science, to be used individually or jointly by schools, training institutions and museums;

c. offer support to the teacher in terms of his/her professional development and delivery of the subject in a competent and confident way that can also encourage the creative development of the pupils;

d. improve museum provisions in order to make museums more effective training and teaching resources;

e. develop a European dimension through sustained, long-term collaboration between trainers, teachers and museum educators across countries;

f. contribute to raising teachers’ and pupils’ awareness of the shared European scientific heritage;

g. through various activities and dissemination of educational material encourage communication and collaboration, as well as reflection and debate in the fields of science education, teacher training and museum education.
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and courses

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Target groups

The target groups are primary school teachers, head teachers, advisory teachers, teacher trainers and museum educators. The project aspires to reach not only members of the partner institutions, but more widely educational staff in schools, training institutions and museums in different countries, mainly through the production of educational materials in several languages and by utilising the web as a communication and distance learning tool.

Envisaged outputs

The envisaged outputs of the project are mainly publications and training courses :

a. An introductory book, joint publication of the partner institutions presenting methodological and pedagogical approaches to in-service training in the sciences should come out by the end of 2002. It is intended for use by teacher trainers and museums that want to work with teachers and by any other type of educators and institutions involved in the field.
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and courses

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b. Educational material for use by teachers and museum educators in the context of educational projects devised for use of science and natural history museums will be developed and published in 2003.

c. A European in-service training course is to take place, starting in 2004, and will be open to teachers and museum educators from all over Europe. We aim to offer more than one edition of the same course, starting from one in Italy.