October 19, 2019

Learning Training Teaching Activity Narva - Estonia

Narva Preschool Põngerjas welcomed teachers from France, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania and Turkey from 22nd to 26th October 2018 for the third learning, teaching, training meeting of the Erasmus+ “Small Scientists Across Europe” project (2017-1-FR01-KA219-037465).
On the first day of the meeting, Mrs. Jekaterina Golubtsova – school headmaster, along with project coordinator, Mrs. Natalja Varkki, welcomed all the partner teachers from: Ecole Maternelle Tordo in France (project coordinator), Kauno lopselis-darzelis “Giliukas” in Kaunas - Lithuania, Kindergarten No. 3 Bistrita and Kindergarten Scornicesti - Romania and Huma Hatun Ozel Egitim Anaokulu from Yildirim – Turkey.
All the visitors visited the hosting kindergarten and learned more about the Estonian educational system and the management of the kindergarten. In the afternoon partners became familiar with the cultural divercity of Narva by visiting the Narva Hermann Castle and by participating in a workshop Science for health and by learning more about Narva history during a promenade by the Narova River which is a natural border between Estonia and Russia.
In the second day of the meeting we visited Kindergarten Penguin, a great example of how special needs education institutions should look like: classes, swimming pools, saunas, salt rooms, physical education rooms and so on specially designed for the needs of the children who attend here, whether they have special need or not. On our return to preschool Põngerjas, the groups were divided in 2 and we participated in separate science lessons: science experiments and how to use robotics in teaching preschool subjects. In the afternoon we learned more about the educational system in Estonia, this time, by visiting Narva College of Tartu University and in the spare time, coordinators had a meeting in hotel conference room.
The third day of our learning, teaching, training mobility began with the Opening ceremony of the Laboratory of Small Scientists in Narva preschool Põngerjas: a special room equipped with diverse games, robots and specially designed to increase the children’s motivation to science. The children of the kindergarten welcomed us with small gifts handmade by them and performed songs and dances for us. A special moment in the ceremony was the dance of the little robots which were in perfect synchrony and also the moment in which the Estonian children sang the anthem of the project along with all the guests. In the afternoon we had a very beautiful visit to the sea at Narva Bay in Narva-Jõesuu and returned to Narva to visit the Kazematte and find more about the fortifications around this beautiful historical city.
On the fourth day of the meeting, project coordinators had a meeting in the morning at hotel conference rooms, while the teachers visited preschool Päikene in Narva and experienced an approach to technology education. At noon all the group visited the modern Narva Water Supply Station and learned more about how this structures work and their importance to local communities. In the afternoon, the hosts organized a traditional crafts workshop at the hotel and each visitor created a beautiful autumn painting using colored wool.
In the last day of the meeting we evaluated the third learning activities meeting, disseminated it and each participant received the participation certificate.
All the meetings, experiments and visits of this visit to Narva were related to the third theme of the project: water. It was in abundance in this beautiful city were we felt very welcomed and visitors and were our hosts were more than hospitable. Thank you, Kidergarten Põngerjas! Thank you, Estonian partners (children and teachers)! Thank you, Narva!, Thank you, Estonia!

November 10, 2017

Transnational Meeting Nice/France

From 06 to 10th November 2017, the first Transnational project meeting for the Erasmus+ KA2 project “Small Scientists Across Europe” took place in Tourette Levens, France. The host institution was Ecole Maternelle Octave Tordo and the project coordinator, Mrs. Elisabeth Gustovic, along with the institution’s headmaster Herve Andrio, the children and the entire school staff welcomed the partners of the project: from Estonia Mrs. Jekaterina Golubtsova and Natalja Varkki, from Lituania Jolanta Gauciené and Jüraté Stakeliuniené, from Portugal Maria Francisca Ribeiro Duarte Pessoa and Joana Isabel Oliveira Minderico, from Romania Bistrita Clapou Crina Luminita, Muscari-Salvan Carmen Maria Veronica and Lazea Ionela Camelia, from Romania Scornicesti Cringus Loredana Mihaela and Patru Marian and from Turkey Ümit Yenisoy and Ibrahim Onur Gokdogan.
The children along with the teaching staff surprised the guests with banners and flags from all the partner countries and invited the guests to visit the kindergarten, the classrooms, and the primary school nearby and meet the children and teachers. All the guests were impressed by the beautiful traditional dances and songs performed by the children and rewarded them with applauses.
During the visit in the beautiful village of Tourette Levens, each partner presented their countries, cities and kindergartens to the group, exchanged information about the educational systems in each partner country, participated in workshops at school and also set specific deadlines for the future projects’ activities.
We want to give a special thank you to Mr. Mayor Alain Frère for his warm welcome at the City Hall and for organizing the meeting with the local authorities. 
The visit to France also brought the guests to the Château – Musée d’histoire naturelle in Tourette Levens, but also to the beautiful Old city of Nice and spectacular Monaco.
We want to thank our hosts for the warm welcome and the beautiful surprises prepared.

February 23, 2018

Learning Teaching Training Mobility Coimbra/Portugal

From 18th to 24th February 2018, teachers from 7 kindergartens in Europe took part in the first transnational learning, teaching and training activity within the Erasmus + KA219 Small Scientists Across Europe Project (2017-1-FR01-KA219-037465) which took place in the wonderful city of Coimbra, located on the banks of the River Mondego in the center of Portugal. The host school Agrupamento de Escolas Rainha Santa Isabel in Coimbra, Portugal, welcomed teachers from partner countries: Ecole Maternelle Tordo Kindergarten, France - project coordinator and 5 pre-school level institutions in Europe such as Lasteaed Põngerjas in Narva - Estonia, Kauno lopselis-darzelis "Giliukas" in Kaunas - Lithuania, Kindergarten No. 3 Bistrita and Kindergarten Scornicesti - Romania and Huma Hatun Ozel Egitim Anaokulu from Yildirim - Turkey.
The opening ceremony of the learning, teaching, training event took place in the host school and began with a warm welcome from the children who sang and danced for their guests. Mrs. Filipe Laura from the eTwinning National Agency Portugal – Educational Ministry, a special guest of the hosts, promoted the action among the participants and the director of the host school, Mr. Nuno Dias detailed the specifics of the Portuguese education system. In the following moments, the guests visited the secondary school and art studio for children with special educational needs, and then the teachers, divided into working teams, visited the kindergartens that are part of the project: Eiras, Loreto, Brasfemes, Stª Apolónia, Trouxemil, Larça, Ingote and Souselas to interact with Portuguese preschool and their parents.
The workshops in this mobility focused in particular on discussing the experiments to be applied to pre-school groups included in the project as well as on the creation of evaluation sheets to be applied after the completion of the first project theme: the Earth, but also the way to create stories and puzzles on this theme. The project site was presented, the appropriate web tools for the proposed activities were exemplified and details were set for the use of the eTwinning platform within the Erasmus + project. The project coordinators set out details of the next project mobility to be held in Kaunas, Lithuania in April and discussed organizational details for the project.
The workshops also included a presentation on the importance of science supported by Maria Filomena Gaspar, professor at the University of Coimbra, a conference on science in pre-school education by Carlos Fiolhais, PhD in Theoretical Physics of the University of Coimbra, presentation about childhood nutrition supported by Maria Joao Campos, and workshops at Exploratório - Centro Ciência Viva de Coimbra. The visit at the Children’s Library at Ferrer Correia Space and the Special Needs School (http://www.apc-coimbra.org.pt/), have completed the experiences of the project that the coordinator in Portugal, teacher Maria Francisca Pessoa prepared for the guests in great detail.
The warm welcome prepared by our hosts also expanded in the preparation of a wide range of visits: the Republic Square, the University of Coimbra dating from 1290 and one of the oldest and largest universities in Portugal, the Joanina Library in Coimbra, a national monument, with its undeniable historical and cultural value, the Machado de Castro Museum, built on the ruins of the former Aeminium Roman Forum (Roman name of Coimbra) and Santa Clara a Nova, Monastery.

April 14, 2018

Learning Teaching Training Meeting in Lithuania

Teachers from Estonia, France, Portugal, Romania and Turkey arrived on 15th April 2018 in Kaunas, Lithuania to participate at the Second learning, teaching and training activity meeting within the Erasmus + KA219 Small Scientists Across Europe Project (2017-1-FR01-KA219-037465). At the host school Kauno lopšelis – darželis „Giliukas”, Mrs. Jolanta Gaučienė, project coordinator from Lithuania and Mrs. Jūrate Stakeliūnienė, the school’s headmaster welcomed the teachers from partner countries: Ecole Maternelle Tordo in France (project coordinator) and another 5 kindergartens in Europe such as Lasteaed Põngerjas in Narva - Estonia, Kindergarten No. 3 Bistrita and Kindergarten Scornicesti - Romania and Huma Hatun Ozel Egitim Anaokulu from Yildirim - Turkey.
During the opening ceremony, the Lithuanian children surprised the participants with songs and dances specific to each of the countries present in the project. We were presented the Lithuanian educational system and when visiting the school and classrooms we observed that some of the groups adopted the R. Steiner pedagogy (Waldorf) and almost half the children have special education needs and the school offered a very well adapted environment for them. 
For the remainder of the day, the guests visited the Old City of Kaunas and were introduced to many historical landmarks such as Kaunas Cathedral Basilica, Kaunas city museum, Vytautas' the Great Church of the Assumption of The Holy Virgin Mary, House of Perkūnas, St. Francis Xavier Church & Jesuit Monastery, Church of St. George Church and the Kaunas Castle.
On Tuesday, 17th April 2018, we had the opportunity to visit the Astronomical Observatory in Molėtai and get information about achievements of the world and Lithuanian astronomy, take a look at the telescopes and their equipment and also participate at a lecture, illustrated by wonderful photographs of various sky objects: planets, stars, nebulas, star clusters and galaxies, accompanied by space music. During the visit to Molėtai we found many historic information about this small city, the important families that lived in this area and visited ruins in the area. By climbing the 214 stairs of the observation tower in Labanoras Regional Park we observed the sights of the Lakajai landscape reserve and a picturesque panorama of Lake Siesartis with its islands and the famous Labanoras Forest. 
On Wednesday, during the working sessions, the partners were divided into 2 groups and participated in many interactive activities with the children: painting, sculpting, drawing, conducting experiments, and so on. The project coordinators from each country had a different working session allocated to them in the second part of the meeting at school. In the afternoon, all the guests visited Curiocity (City for curios kids), a place of surprises for both children up to 13 years and their parents.
On Thursday, the working sessions continued, and the partners, divided into groups participated at inter and transdisciplinary activities that integrated science activities (experiments) with art (painting, drawing etc.), physical or sensory activities using S. Kneipp methodology and sound therapy. The project coordinators met a second time and discussed aspects of the projects such as: the experiments to be done on the second theme of the project – Air, details regarding the creation of the stories about air, puzzles and the timetable for activities.
In the afternoon, the hosts prepared a travel with the oldest means of transport Žaliakalnis funicular to visit the Church of the Resurrection of Christ and also Pažaislis Culture and Tourism Center.
In the last day of the meeting, we visited Kaunas Special Needs School, a school for children with special educational needs (movement and disability). The work sessions for partners involved exchanging information about site of the project and discussing particular data about eTwinning. The project coordinators shared ideas to plan the next meetings (Transnational – Turkey and Learning, Teaching or Training Activities Meeting - Estonia) and other logistics issues. The working day finished with the delivery of diplomas and certificates.
We want to thank the Lithuanian partners (children, teachers, coordinator and school headmaster) for the exchange of good practices, extraordinary and interesting activities presented, all the happy moments and their hospitality.

Transnational Meeting In Bursa / Turkey

Second Transnational project meeting for Erasmus+ KA2 project

From 21st to 25th May 2018, Hüma Hatun Özel Eğitim Anaokulu in Bursa, Turkey welcomed a group of 13 European teachers (headmasters, coordinators or teachers) who are partners in the Erasmus+ KA2 project “Small Scientists Across Europe”. Mr. Ümit Yenisoy, headmaster and Mr. Ibrahim Onur Gökdoğan, project coordinator along with a group of 5 teachers and children from the special education kindergarten welcomed the partners of the project: from France Andrio Herve and Elisabeth Élisabeth Gustovic - project coordinator, from Estonia Natalja Varkki and Anzela Yahiaoui, from Lithuania Jolanta Gaučienė and Daiva Ramanauskienė, from Portugal Maria Francisca Pessoa and Joana Minderico, from Romania-Bistrita Muscari Carmen,  Ionela Camelia Lazea and  Telcean Ana-Maria, from Romania-Scornicesti Sitaru Loredana Mihaela Cringus and Marian Patru.
All the guests participated at the opening ceremony at the warm welcome of the host teachers and children and visited the school and classrooms. The children along with the teaching staff sang for the guests and prepared small handmade surprises for the visitors. Because we wanted to always remember this meeting, a symbol of this partnership was immortalized in a giant banner with the handprints of the entire group. After a presentation of the Turkish educational system, the program continued with a visit at the Bursa City Museum, the Koza Han, the Ulu Mosque, the Imperial Gate and of the beautiful city of Bursa followed by a spectacular view of the valley from the Tophane.
In the second day of the meeting, in the morning the group was divided in two: coordinators had a working session while headmasters and teachers visited Bala Hatun Kindergarten in Bursa. At the kindergarten, the visitors were impressed by the traditional dances performed by the children who were dressed in spectacular traditional clothes. Here, they visited the kindergarten and were introduced to a variety of mental games.
In the afternoon, the hosts organized a workshop in the Bursa Science and Technology Center and a short trip to Gölyazi a Turkish town founded on a small peninsula on Lake Uluabat. 
On the last day of the meeting, the coordinators had another working meeting. During the visit in Bursa, the coordinators working sessions included subjects such as presentations by each partners of the tasks and responsibilities they done during this first year, establishing the tasks to finish until the end of the first year of the project, creation of questionnaires for children, parents and teachers, discussing the writing of the intermediary report and also setting specific deadlines for the projects’ activities. Also, in this meeting, the first book with experiments about Earth was presented to the partners and preparations for the second book were made.
Other visits also included the old Cumalıızık Village and Saitabat waterfall and the Sipping Tea under the Īnkaya Çınar to see the 610 years of plate tree. In the afternoon the visit to the Bursa Botanical Park gave us the opportunity to see diverse trees and flowers, ponds, bikes for rent and exercise paths. 
We want to thank Ümit Yenisoy, and Onur Gökdoğan, but also to Meryem YiğitKübra Özkan, Aysun Varol, Merve Celikkollu, Emine Eminoglu from the Turkish teaching staff, for their warm welcome and for making the stay in Turkey so lovely! We will always remember our visit to beautiful Bursa and meeting you!

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