From March 21st to March 28th 2019, Prof.in Mag.a Agnes Haidacher-Horn took part in an intensive and successful Erasmus+ Mobility for educational activities, presentation of research results, network integration and creation of an international research project at the University of Iceland in Reykjavik, Iceland.
In Prof. Charlotte Wolff’s courses on “EFL learning and second language acquisition” and “Foreign language teaching”, A. Haidacher-Horn gave keynote lectures that were embedded in the course agenda. The cooperation with this colleague started one year ago in the course of an Erasmus+ Mobility. The lectures focused on the presentation of research results in the form of a book on the use of authentic English comics and picture books for English language teaching (da Rocha, K., Haidacher-Horn A., & Müller-Caron, A. (Eds.). (2017). Picture That! Picturebooks, Comics and Graphic Novels in the EFL Classroom. Research & Teaching Implications. Study series of the University College of Teacher Education, vol. 9. Graz: Leykam.). Discussions of best practice examples with the Icelandic and international secondary education students, based on the experiences in the classroom with the graphic novel Fahrenheit 451, rounded off both seminars.
This Erasmus+ Mobility also served to start and discuss a research project with Charlotte Wolff as a partner in Iceland. This project with the title Fairies, Tales, Fantastic Worlds – Bringing the Peculiar into the EFL Classroom. Fantasy Literature and Gaming in English as a Foreign Language classes at the secondary level, was submitted at the research fund of the University college of Teacher Education (PHSt Forschungsfonds) and has already been accepted. Several interviews were conducted to add to the current body of information about the reading habits of Iceland’s children and youth and about how authentic English literature is used in teaching at all levels and how it is integrated in the Reykjavik main public library.
Another focus was networking and consolidating the contact with the International Office of the University of Iceland.
The visit to the famous Icelandic writer Ragnheidur Gestsdottir in her house in Hafnafjördur was the highlight of the journey. During a lunch together, the author’s books, which she has been writing and illustrating for children and adolescents for 50 years, were the main topic. An interview with the author of Icelandic and English children’s literature and an interesting exchange have led to future cooperation plans.