NEXT STEP Summer School 2022

10-15 July 2022

NEXT STEP Summer School 2022 aims to train teachers in developing the creative and innovative classroom of tomorrow, the STEAM IDEAS’ Square, in which education relies on an interdisciplinary, arts-based methodology within an entrepreneurship and design thinking framework.

The course will implement creative, interdisciplinary and digitally-enabled art/science (STEAM) interventions utilizing cutting-edge technologies to establish deep, immersive meeting points between schools within the scope of a creative and innovative classroom, the STEAM IDEAS’ Square.

Depending on the pandemic situation prior to the NEXT STEP Summer School and if circumstances will not allow physical participation, the programme will be converted in order to follow the needs of an online interactive course.

NEXT STEP Summer course will introduce teachers to the STEAM IDEAS’ Square Operation. During this operation schools will involve teachers and students across Europe in the development various innovative and creative activities based on art and science under themes drawn from their science subjects’ curriculum and following the NEXT STEP approach. The participating teachers and students through the collaborative, creative and inquiry-based proposed approach will foster their 21st century skills including teamwork, creativity, entrepreneurship, ICT skills (through the use of innovative web collaborative tools and platforms), critical thinking as well as their emotional intelligence.

In that sense our summer course will help teachers :

  • promote the open and innovative education embedded in the digital era.
  • disseminate the learning outcomes of the proposed activities and the operation of the STEAM IDEAS’ Square
  • spread the utilization of open and innovative education, training and pedagogies, open, participatory school governance, work methods and resources for school heads, teachers and students
  • strengthen the teaching profession by providing targeted support and trainings for school teachers
  • collaborate between research and innovation and local communities by providing and actively encouraging direct engagement of the relevant stakeholders in the interdisciplinary educational process through the organization of events and virtual platforms.
  • take advantage of guides and tools will that give a clear view on how they can achieve a sustainable NEXT STEP Network

To achieve its aims and objectives, NEXT STEP project places schools at the heart of real-life inquiry, inspired by real-life questions by employing pupils’ own cultural initiatives as natural gateways to knowledge creation within formal, informal and non-formal educational environments, and will design and implement an EU level action to promote STEAM approach to facilitate the development of a creativity, innovation and inclusion culture. This culture imports external ideas that challenge internal views and beliefs and, in turn, exports its students – and their assets – to the community it serves. Such an engaging environment makes a vital contribution to its community’s well-being: student projects meet real needs in the community outside of school, they are presented publicly, and draw upon local expertise and experience. The school environment fosters learner independence – and interdependence – through collaboration, mentoring, and through providing opportunities for learners to understand and interrogate their place in the world. This culture recognizes the important part that students can play as peer enquirers/researchers, and welcomes their active involvement.

NEXT STEP will implement creative, interdisciplinary and digitally-enabled art/science (STEAM) interventions (which the consortium members have developed, implemented and improved in numerous countries) in precisely the way which will take the current status quo at schools from being “reactionary” to “necessary innovation”. Relying on a portfolio of educational interventions (e.g. Learning Science Through Theatre, Global Science Opera, iMUSICA), NEXT STEP will develop a theoretical framework, training materials, training workshops (both digital and in-person) and an evaluation approach which will constitute the state of the art regarding digital implementation of creative, interdisciplinary teaching in primary and secondary schools in the era of Covid-19. This will furthermore be extended to informal learning arenas.

Utilizing cutting-edge technologies (e.g. VR), NEXT STEP will establish deep, immersive meeting points between schools in the consortium countries and beyond thus enabling participating pupils and their educators to creatively interact with their peers within the scope of a creative and innovative classroom, the STEAM IDEAS’ Square. Such long-term innovations are required in order to:

a) provide pupils with the global context in which the pandemic is transforming societies and
b) provide pupils with the larger social environment which they will lack in years to come as a result of the pandemic’s nature. Furthermore, by relying on consortium members which are leading organizations in the creative/cultural industries, high-level artistic and cultural input will be secured in direct contact with participation educators and pupils and thus enlarging the outreach of the cultural sector.

The summer course will train teachers, artists and educators to engage school students to NEXT STEP activities but most important will be used as an exchange of ideas setting. The participants will be able to bring their experiences and also learn about the Operation of the STEAM IDEAS’ Square approaches. The participants will act as co-creators and will collaborate in person after their experience in the previous school year. They will be able to work with the organisers, to simulate the STEAM IDEAS’ Square, in order to update the material and finalise the approach and provide recommendations for the sustainability of the NEXT STEP Approach. The participants will be related with the project’s partners and will be trained to act as ambassadors in their countries and beyond. The activities have a dual purpose of enhancing the intensive study programme’s training but also providing an innovative combination of formal and non-formal education. The various activities will be targeted towards a number of different target groups and focusing on student.

Participants will be able to take advantage of the project’s material that will be used during the course. The material forms an effective mechanism that supports the operation of the STEAM IDEAS’ Square through specific student projects (activities) in schools. It proposes interventions in their regions, communities, and cities in collaboration with the respective stakeholders. The proposed mechanism is supported by the NEXT STEP Community Support Environment from the project’s website. This environment acts as an aggregator of best practices and working models among the schools’ community and as the central meeting point of the participating teachers and students.

Participants will also take advantage of the scenarios of use that are in line with the proposed approach and involve schools in a series of creative and innovative activities for the improvement of the local cities, settlements, and communities’ physical and built-up environments, while engaging key stakeholders (experts, researchers, local communities, businesses etc.) in the process.

The project’s  Community Support Environment that is part of the NEXT STEP project website ( will act as a main hub of communication and for sharing and distributing preparatory material with the participants. Participants will have a common workspace for uploading and downloading educational materials.

Participants will have to get acquainted with the training topics as well as the course methodology by accessing the materials and tools which will be available in advance through the website.

Before coming to the summer school, registered participants will be asked to review some materials relative to the topic of the summer school and the methodologies that will be discussed.

As a follow-up to the training course, the participants will be asked to make use of the activities they worked on during the summer school and share their work with the community of teachers.

As members of our community of science teachers, participants will be constantly informed about new initiatives they can participate in, as well as new activities they can choose to use. They have access to support provided by the training team, and they will be able to communicate their work and ideas with other science teachers in European countries and beyond, who have a common interest.

In order to assess the impact of the course, participants will have to answer, during and at the end of the course, a set of relevant questionnaires that will be provided by the course providers. The results of the questionnaires/survey or a so-called evaluation report will be available to all participants of the course.

Course fee

The course fee for all ESIA Summer Schools is 480€ (80€/per day) and fully within the funding opportunities of the Erasmus+ Programme.

The course fee covers:

  • Expert lecturers for lectures, seminars and workshops
  • All materials and equipment needed for the course
  • Participation in the social programme & excursions (e.g. Sunset and dinner at Cape Sounio, excursion to the Acropolis and visit to the Acropolis Museum and dinner in downtown Athens, traditional night and farewell dinner, etc.)

Subsistence & accommodation

The Summer School will be held at Golden Coast Hotel & Bungalows, an A-class/ 4-star sea-side hotel which stretches on the golden, sandy beach of the Marathon Bay, near the historic location of Marathon, at the outskirts of Athens.

ESIA has made special arrangement with the hotel and are happy to offer to all participants a single or double room with all-inclusive services (i.e. breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks and free of charge services for outdoors sports and recreational activities).

The costs for subsistence are also within the ceilings of the Erasmus+ programme for KA1 mobility actions.

The Summer School will be held at Golden Coast Hotel & Bungalows, an A-class/ 4-star sea-side hotel which stretches on the golden, sandy beach of the Marathon Bay, near the historic location of Marathon, at the outskirts of Athens.

It is the area of Marathon, that has hosted since the times of myths when Theseus killed the terrible bull of Marathon, to the times of the Persian wars and the Battle of Marathon, further on to our days and the marathon race and Marathon Run, the emblematic symbol of man’s quest for freedom and the will to defend his most noble deeds which constitute the foundations of the Human civilization. The plethora of natural, historical sites and museums of the area reveal in all details this unique historical voyage.

Participants are expected to arrive through the Athens International Airport, approximately 25 km (15,53 miles) distance from the hotel.

Learn More…

School Heads and Teachers participation in the summer courses can be funded by the ERASMUS+ Programme.

In case your school or organization does not have the funds to cover the costs of your participation in the Summer School, there is another option: you can apply to be funded by by the ERASMUS+ Programme.

Please note that the Erasmus+ KA1 application can only be submitted by the school or the organization – no individual applications can be submitted.

The deadline for application is 23 February 2022.

What is ERASMUS+?

Erasmus+ is the European Commission’s Programme for education, training, youth, and sport for the period 2021-2027. As an integrated programme, Erasmus+ offers more opportunities for the mobility of learners and staff and cooperation across the education, training, and youth sectors and is easier to access than its predecessors, with simplified funding rules and a structure that aims to streamline the administration of the programme.

Erasmus+ Key Action 1 (KA1) provides a unique opportunity for teachers, headmasters, trainers, and other staff of educational institutions to participate in international training courses in different European countries. Schools, universities, vocational education and training, and adult education organizations are all eligible to receive full funding to attend courses under a KA1 mobility grant. The Erasmus+ KA1 grant covers all the costs to attend teacher training courses: including travel, subsistence, and course fee.

For up-to-date information about Erasmus+ please check the Programme’s website. Your school will need to apply to your country’s National Agency, who is also the one who will evaluate the proposal. Therefore, your National Agency is also a very good point to start for more information.

Don’t forget to go through the the New Programme Guide and you will have all you need to know.

The steps to apply for an Erasmus+ KA1 School Education Staff Mobility grant are:

  1. Fill in the registration form to our Summer School with your details. This is an individual registration form, so if there are more than one participant from the same school, each one will have to submit a separate registration form. This way you have reserved a slot in the course in case your application for Erasmus+ funding is successful!
  2. Register your school/organization here: , if not already registered.
  3. Check the compliance with the programme criteria
  4. Check the financial conditions
  5. Fill in and submit the application form
  6. Respect the deadline
  7. Do not forget to inform us as soon as you get notified from your National Agency whether your grant application is accepted or rejected.

You can find all related information about submitting an Erasmus+ Application HERE.

We will be happy to guide you through the process.

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