DIALLS is an EC Horizon 2020 project dedicated to teaching children to be tolerant, empathetic and inclusive through talking together.
THE BIG PICTURE
European communities in the 21st century are diverse: culturally, ideologically, linguistically, religiously. Differences between neighbours, classmates, co-workers, and friends are a given — and it is part of what makes the continent a wonderful and vibrant place to live.
But knowing how to talk across difference is not a given: it is a precious and increasingly important skill. We have all experienced how difficult and sometimes uncomfortable it is to ask or receive questions, listen openly, disagree or debate respectfully, concede or compromise, and ultimately find empathy for others.
The aims of DIALLS are to teach children in schools from a young age to engage together in discussions where they may have differing viewpoints or perspectives, to enable a growing awareness of their own cultural identities, and to be sensitive not only to their own identities and cultures but also to empathise with those of others.
DIALLS seeks to support young people to develop those skills as part of their education in schools, through teaching them the skills of dialogue and argumentation. How do we do it? We use texts (wordless picturebooks and films) to stimulate discussions about living together and social responsibility. As they talk, students learn to articulate and explore their cultural identities and listen to their peers, developing tolerant, empathetic and inclusive behaviours as they engage with different viewpoints.
DIALLS started in May 2018 and is a three-year project funded by the EC’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation fund, within the topic ’Inclusive, Innovative and Reflective Societies’. We are a consortium of researchers at ten universities in nine countries, working closely with teachers and students. The project is structured by nine interrelated work packages.
The specific objectives of the project are the following. You can find out more about each on our Work Packages page.
- To develop an understanding of young people’s cultural literacy through the teaching of dialogue and argumentation as a means to understand European identities, cultures and diversities, including:
- A cultural literacy learning programme (CLLP) for use in classrooms
- An analysis of classroom and online discussions
- A multilingual corpus: an open-access collection of transcribed discussions from classes across Europe
- To provide comprehensive guidance for the development of cultural literacy in schools through:
- A Scale of Progression for Cultural Literacy Learning (SPCLL) to help educators evaluate and deepen their students’ progress
- To promote the emergence of young people’s cultural identities in their discussions and produced cultural artefacts through:
- A student-produced cultural literacy manifesto
- A virtual gallery of student produced cultural artefacts