The Erasmus+ project called 'Green Wheels', implemented by Czech, Slovak, Hungarian and English partners, addresses an exciting and current issue. They focused on training mechanics of electric and hybrid cars: they developed a curriculum and adapted innovative teaching methods in order to train competent professionals to service the more and more popular vehicles.
Who will repair cars with green number plates?
The partner countries made sure that all those affected were represented, and thus, besides the Hungarian subsidiary of the Centre for Modern Education, the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as well as Fáy András Automotive Secondary School also joined the project. The school engaged in training car mechanics played an especially important role, as they conducted the tests of nearly 80 theoretical and practical lessons with their students.
"Most of our students were very interested in the topic", said Tamás Korponai, Project Coordinator and instructor of the school. "These cars are packed with electronics, with lots of displays and a standard equipment which you can only rarely find in other cars, and only as extras. Of course, our students found it very exciting."
Among other things, that was the motivation for the Hungarian school to involve their students more and more in the project. The students did not only test the teaching materials, but also made a short video about the work processes, participated in demo classes held for the foreign colleagues and helped implement the partner meeting in Hungary.
"At the practical classes, the students could also perform the tasks on the cars", the instructor added. "We were the only ones in the project who let the students that close to the vehicles. It was due to the proficiency of our teachers and our safe workshops, where you can safely touch the vehicles and high-voltage equipment."
Since it's not necessarily a safe thing to do, all the staff of a garage should know what to do when repairing an electric of hybrid car.
"That's exactly why the system was based on ECVET", Tamás Korponai explains. "Not everybody needs to know everything; students only need to master certain knowledge, skills and abilities. It's crucial that even a car body painter or a car body repairman should be aware of the risks and how to avoid them."
The instructor explained that their partners located in the UK served as a role model for the East Central European participants in this respect, as in their own home countries these processes were still in a developing phase. "In England, the various levels of hazard have long been classified and authorisations clarified, from the parking lot attendant who receives the key to the person who is actually authorised to touch an electric engine."
In the past two years of the project, a number of tangible results have been achieved. Among others, teacher's manuals, e-learning materials, videos, online visual and audio dictionaries, as well as a lot of auxiliary materials have been made available. Still, Tamás Korponai doesn't consider these the most important achievements.
"This field develops very rapidly, and some of the teaching materials may quickly become outdated, so what I see as the real benefit is the educational methods we have mastered. These can completely transform teachers' approach, and teach students independent work and practice-oriented learning much better. That's how we can best prepare them for the challenges of the labour market."
The participants of the Green Wheels project were introduced to a number of new learning methods, some of which have since been adopted by the schools. Such methods include the flipped classroom, peer learning, critical thinking, the research-based method or visible learning. All these are supported by exercise sheets and webinar materials available.
More information: www.greenwheels.eu
Last modified: 20-05-2020