“I experience that the students become more interested in the Nordic countries because the project is moving down to child level.” This is what Jacob Fuchs, a teacher at Vonsild School in Denmark, says. He is a diligent user of the portal that goes by the name Atlantbib. “The books are about topics they like and the portal embraces a wide range so that students can easily find their areas of interest,” he says.
Because atlantbib.org there are a number of small digital textbooks on optional topics produced by both students and teachers. The books are available as audiobooks, read by students, so that children in other countries can hear how to pronounce words in the original language. In addition to this, text is combined with pictures and song, while you can get a direct translation done by students in other Nordic countries.
Teacher colleague Tina Stierna from Frösakullsskolan in Sweden agrees: “students think it’s a fun way to look for differences and similarities in the languages. It starts something in the students. I use it most in Swedish teaching, but you can find subjects for all subjects “, she says.
This neighboring language teaching
Atlantbib is both neighboring language teaching and academic reading in its own language. The portal functions as a parallel collaboration between schools in the Nordic region and facilitates classes to work together.
Jacob Fuchs uses the portal both for translation and for making books, mainly in neighboring language teaching. They use the textbooks to read about different topics and study the cultures of the different countries.
«We learn, for example, that both Danish and Swedish culture and language are very similar. There is something present about this and the students find it easier to work in this way, when it is not just about reading a text in another Scandinavian language. In addition, it is a great help that the students have the translation into their own language in front of them “, he says.
Thus, the portal contributes to a different teaching lesson. And not least another moment of joy: “the students think it’s fantastic that their own books are online”, says Jacob.
Jacob also says that Atlantbib opened up for contact with classes in other countries:
«The students exchange letters with a class in Sweden, among other things. They think it is much more fun to read letters from Swedish peers than to read Astrid Lindgren “, says Jacob.
Includes cooperation with the Nordic countries in the School
Atlantbib started back in 2015 on the initiative of Stefan Åge Hardonk Nielsen, teacher at Vonsild School, and is funded by Nordplus Nordens Språk. The project has been approved as a continuation project until 2019 – and the portal itself will be available until at least 2027. New from this year is that the portal is now open to schools throughout the Nordic region. This is done in collaboration with the teaching platform Norden i Skolen and founder Thomas Henriksen.
“I am a big supporter of the students themselves becoming active in their own learning process. This is a good way to work with language, and it offers Atlantbib. Therefore, we want to help the project along the way and help make the portal accessible to even more teachers and students “, says Thomas, who hopes the collaboration can lead to more users on Atlantbib.
Today, the portal is available in all Nordic languages. Not all countries are officially represented, such as Finland or Greenland, but there are some translations in these languages as well. The latest grant is two South Sami schools from Norway and Sweden. The goal is that all schools in all countries will use the portal actively and that Atlantbib will be able to offer an equal amount of books in the Nordic languages and about the different cultures. Today, the portal has approx. 150 books available – the target is 250.