The ALFAC project is a partnership between researchers, educators and institutional stakeholders from Europe aiming to improve the quality of aquatic education. It addresses the educational challenge of improving aquatic literacy (AL) levels of children aged 6-12, to better protect them from the dangers of being active in water environments, and to motivate them to engage in water-based activities both now and later. The ten full partners come from seven countries with different drowning accident rates and are involved in water education. In each country, a network of associated partners has been formed to be as close as possible to the pedagogical and structural issues. All partners are representative of the different types of organization and curriculum that can be found in Europe in the teaching of “can swim”. This diversity will allow the results of the ALFAC project to subsequently benefit worldwide. The ALFAC consortium aims to create diagnostic and pedagogical tools to raise the AL level of children.
The first step will be to build an international database to compare children's AL levels by age, gender and country. The data collection will take place in partner primary schools in each country and will involve a total of 2500 pupils. The benchmarks through AL dimensions will enable stakeholders to identify the strengths and weaknesses of their organisation and shape pedagogical or structural reforms. The second step will be to produce pedagogical resources that will enable all practitioners, to quickly identify the most important points to address, and the teaching aids to improve them. This phase will be associated with their wide dissemination to the teaching staff of institutions to assess the impact on pedagogical practices.
By exploiting our international partnership, by sharing correct implementation of different pedagogical approaches and by making diagnostic and pedagogical tools accessible to all, we aim to develop Aquatic Literacy For All Children.
The kick-off meeting of ALFAC, hosted in Science Po Lille on September 29th, 2022, was a great success, with 97 participants on-site and 66 online.
The ALFAC project is a European partnership gathering both researchers and multiple stakeholders from the aquatic education sector, aiming to improve and promote the quality of water education for children (6-12 years old), by meeting the dual challenges of protecting children from drowning while motivating them to engage now and later in aquatic activities.
This EU cooperation partnership was awarded with a Erasmus+ Sport co-funding, with a 400,000€ grant for a period of 36 months.