Unforgettable dance performances by students at St. Mark’s
Asia Europe Classroom Net – or just AECNet for short – is a part of the Asia Europe Foundation ( ASEF ), which was formed after the 1996 summit in Thailand. The meeting was attended by leaders from 25 Asian and European countries, together with representatives from the European Commission. The goal of ASEF is to promote understanding between Asia and Europe in several different areas; Asia Europe Classroom, however, focuses entirely on school collaborations within the ASEF framework. The target audiences for AEC are secondary and high schools in Asia and Europe and the main idea is that – through the use of IT tools – implement joint projects that contribute to greater understanding and friendship across national and cultural borders.
The ninth AEC Conference: Sustainable Development in focus
The ninth AEC annual conference, this time in Delhi, was the very first one for me and without substantial financial support from AEC I could not possibly have participated. Thus, a big thank you to AEC and especially to Angie Toh who provided extremely fast, knowledgeable and detailed help on all the practical details of planning my trip. The AEC 2010 conference focused on sustainable community development and especially on the extremely important biodiversity that today is seriously threatened throughout the world – also in Asia and Europe.
All in all, we were nearly 80 teachers – and a group of students – from 20 countries who got together in Delhi to network and plan new collaborative projects. The atmosphere was extremely friendly and it was very easy to connect with the other delegates, even for me – a complete ‘newbie’ in this context! We were only two participating teachers from Sweden: Niclas Törnbladh from John Bauer high school in Ystad was also present, together with two students. Niclas has carried out a remarkable project – FiveTimesFive , on the Ning platform (Ning has, as you probably know, caused a bit of an outrage after taking ‘free riders’ offline ) – along with his students and collaborators in several Asian countries. In fact, Niclas’ project was so good that he received one of the three prestigious AEC Awards. Warm congratulations to Niclas, his students and all the participants in the project! Also many congratulations to the participants in the Eco Tourists’ Passports (Coordinator: Yuen Chai Lin, Singapore) and Whazzup! (Coordinator: Sinikka Laakio-Whybrow, Finland, Ning platform) that were also awarded the AEC Award.
Superb St. Mark’s
The next last day of the conference offered both on an unforgettable visit to the conference host school, St.Mark’s Senior Secondary School – some totally amazing performances by the students there! – and continued work with all current projects . I would also like to express my appreciation to all members of the AEC work group at St. Mark’s; truly a superb effort. Many thanks!
It seems AEC is not very well known in the Nordic area; I also definitely think this should be changed so come along and sign up! The organization offers highly interesting school partnership opportunities with Asia, a huge part of the world that may primarily be known to many people in the North through exotic travel articles and news reports on television. Therefore it is even more important to contact young people and colleagues in distant countries and discover not only cultural differences but also the countless things we have in common – no matter where we live on our fragile planet.