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The onion model: a quick tool for external partners’ engagement in school projects

Engaging with stakeholders is at the heart of Open Schooling and even though teachers have extensive experience in building educational projects, reaching out and engaging with external partners is not something they are used to or comfortable with.

The Schools As Living Labs project has developed materials, tools, and even a full workshop for teachers to get trained on how to identify and engage with external partners. These materials are used and displayed following 3 steps of involvement in the SALL project:

  • Step 1: You have no idea what external partners’ engagement means.
    Check pages 9-11 of the Roadmap for teachers to get basic information on external partners’ engagement
  • Step 2: You have decided to participate in the SALL project and would like to engage with external partners
    Follow a webinar or a workshop on the SALL methodology and external partners’ engagement. They are regularly offered by our national coordinators, check our events calendar and take a look at the workshop structure and agenda.
  • Step 3: You’ve started your Open Schooling project and need some extra support.
    Download our onion model and fill it out with your students to identify potential and relevant partners for your project. After you’ve chosen your topic, write down as many people and institutions as possible on each layer of the onion. Ask yourself: who has anything to do with my topic? What does the project need? Who do we know? Are we inclusive enough?

More teaching materials and worksheets are currently being developed, tested and translated in schools across Europe. These tools allow teachers and students to identify potential stakeholders, put into words why a potential stakeholder should participate in their project, and discuss how an external partner can contribute.

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