Everybody’s in! The Inclusiveness of Sport (LS-IT-630)

Introduction and Summary

My name is Donata Federici Monesi and I have created the present learning scenario for a class of secondary school learners aged 15-16 from Liceo N. Copernico, Bologna (Italy), in collaboration with one of my Physical Education (PE) colleagues, Ms Cristina Latina. This learning scenario originally was meant as a Civic Education module on the key concepts of diversity and inclusion, and it has then developed into a more interdisciplinary work on fair play and the inclusive power of sport. 

With this scenario, starting off with some videos on the meaning of the fair play and the inclusiveness of sport, students are made to reflect on the fact that, compared to other fields of human activity, sport can be a powerful means of integration and inclusion, since it is based on a shared set of rules and a common “language”. Reflecting on the concepts of inclusion/exclusion, separation/integration by means of a diagram and discussing them collaboratively, students explore the Europeana collections and choose stories that express the positive values of sport. After that, they make up some fair games to be played together and work in groups on a collective diary featuring stories of people who overcame prejudice and marginalization through sport. 

Games designed by students during the activity

Lessons Learnt

At the end of our work, a survey was delivered to the students, who stated that thanks to this learning experience: 

  1. They developed a better sense of respect (54,5%), self awareness (27,3%) and empathy (18,2%);
  2. They understood that sport can be a good vehicle for self-expression and integration (63,6%) and felt more inclusive (18,2%) and attentive to the needs of disadvantaged people (18,2%).
Results of the survey delivered to students

This learning scenario has helped the students develop important soft skills such as tolerance, empathy, and solidarity. Exploring the stories of the athletes featured on Europeana, our students have learned that sport is not only accessible to everyone but that it can build up a sense of community and break down barriers, fighting discrimination and bias. By inventing some games based on the idea of fair play, students have learned that if we all respect the basic rules of human life, we learn how to be more respectful and become better citizens. 

Would you like to know more about this learning scenario? You can download it below:

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CC BY-SA 4.0: the featured image used to illustrate this article has been found on Europeana and has been provided by the Europeana Foundation.

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