In 2017, 10 insightful Peer Learning Activities took place. These sessions were organized by 24 ISSA member organizations, either as applicants or co-applicants.
The PLAs covered a wide range of topics. Some focused on Quality in Early Childhood Development (ECD), others on Quality in education, diversity and social inclusion of Roma children. But also topics such as violence in early childhood, accessibility of integrated services and the executive function and self-regulation in ECD. And financial literacy in ECD and developing networks of professionals.
37 member organizations from 24 countries participated in these PLA’s, as organizers and/or participants.
To give some insight in the exciting and inspiring exchange among member organizations, we share some examples with outcomes plus quotes from participants:
The PLA on financial literacy in ECD was organized in cooperation between the Belarusian League of Parents and Teachers “KrokzaKrokam” and the Comenius Foundation, Poland. The PLA addressed the lack of economic education in Belarus and creates an opportunity to build financial literacy from an early age. Sixteen teachers/animators and 5 staff members of KrokzaKrokam were trained on the topic. They organized lessons for children age 5-6 and a booklet of best practices was prepared. Altogether, this PLA reached 320 children and 700 members of the local community and government.
Natalie’s father: “I am happy we have been involved in this project. I used to think economic issues are too difficult for children but now I see we must teach our kids as earlier as possible.”
Lera, 6 years old: “It is very funny to visit shops and banks. Before that I did not understand what my mum did there, now I even can help her!”
Olga, teacher: “Financial literacy is not paid sufficient attention in the state preschool education curriculum, but children require such knowledge. This project has filled this gap.
In the PLA on developing networks of professionals, the Open Academy Step by Step, Croatia and Step by Step Centre for Quality Education, Slovenia cooperated.
The PLA helped both organizations to join forces to prepare a strategic plan to build and improve their networks of professionals and organizations. After the PLA, a professional learning community will be set up in Croatia, building upon the experience of the Slovenian network of professionals.
Croatia: “OA Step by Step trainers and mentors told us that this PLA significantly contributed to their professional development and even increased their sense of belonging to OA Step by Step. They also said that they still need more opportunities like this one, where they will be able to exchange experiences and participate in program development of the network.”
Slovenia: “It was powerful experience to define key elements of success of our network. It reminded us about our roots. Martina Stažnik is an experienced trainer, who “hears” in between the lines. It was a really successful PLA “.