Dissemination of the project results continues in Latvia

Teacher from the Latvian partner school Tatjana Strigalova continues dissemination of the project results. Yesterday she took part in the event organized by Riga City council project department. Here she presented the 4 created modules, our project and the link where all schools in Riga can find the produced project materials. Many schools from Riga involved in international projects  participated there and received this information.

Presentation of project’s results at fair “Mokykla”

On November 22-23, School of Robotics participated in the exhibition “School” at the annual Litexpo Exhibition Center. At the school’s booth, children and parents could learn about robotics, design and print a 3D product. Teachers and school leaders learned about the possibilities of setting up robotics activities at school and getting a 3D printer for this matter.
During the meeting in the conference room, we introduced teachers to the Erasmus + project “How to Raisean Inventor. Technology and engineering learning materials for schools”, designed for teaching children 3D design, building and programming with Lego Mindstorms and micro: bit technology, solving engineering problems. The training material is free and available in Lithuanian.

We also talked about artificial intelligence programming lessons, shared good examples of student-created startups, and gave an overview of 3D printing tools and technologies.

Lecturers:
Paulius Briedis, principal of the School of Robotics;
Akvilė Gerulskytė, Erasmus + project coordinator;
Vytautas Štaras, postgraduate student in artificial intelligence;
Romualdas Grigelis, representative of IN RE.

Librarians learned to program with Lego

In October-November, teachers of “Robotics School” conducted trainings for the staff of Kaunas County Public Library. A group of twelve librarians learned how to work with 3D printers and to design and program Lego robots. Librarians intend to conduct workshops for children on the basis of partner-developed educational materials from the Erasmus + KA2 Strategic Partnerships’ HOW TO RAISE AN INVENTOR. TECHNOLOGY AND ENGINEERING LEARNING MATERIAL FOR SCHOOLS. We hope that thanks to this initiative, about 300 children will benefit from the project’s methodological material throughout the year.

The library team, which has been improving its knowledge of robotics for two days, is eager to introduce its new skills to users!

The training was organized within the framework of the Library project “Culture Intelligently”, which aims to reduce the digital and regional division of Kaunas and Kaunas region inhabitants, promote social integration, raise the level of technological literacy, develop creativity and community by creating a mobile creativity study package.

Below are fotos from the learning experience.

Teacher training in Lithuania

In August – October, Lithuanian educators were invited to an accredited seminar held by partners of the Erasmus+ Project “HOW TO RAISE AN INVENTOR. TECHNOLOGY AND ENGINEERING LEARNING MATERIAL FOR SCHOOLS”, School of Rootics and KTU Engineering Lyceum.

During the workshop, the teachers had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with and practice the modules developed during the project, which are well suited to enriching natural science, IT, programming and other STEAM subject skills, as well as being used in non-formal education activities.

Tutorials are for anyone who wants to design and print 3D models, design and program devices, for those looking for an interesting and engaging way to introduce students to technology, teach students robotics and turn technology solutions into business solutions.

During the seminar, lecturers from the School of Robotics made recommendations on how to start non-formal education activities and how to get the equipment needed. Lecturers of the KTU Engineering Lyceum recommended how to integrate activities into general education programs.

The training consisted of 3 parts:

2 academic hours Introductory Seminar on the Web (available on Youtube);

6 academic hours workshop in Kaunas and Panevezys;

2 academic hours final seminar online.

Participants were issued 10 acad. hours accredited training certificates.

The seminar was followed by 30 teachers online and 18 teachers in Kaunas and Panevezys.

Tools used:

Below are some fotos from the event.

The results of the project

Successful completion of the two-year Erasmus + KA2 Strategic Partnerships project ” HOW TO RAISE AN INVENTOR. TECHNOLOGY AND ENGINEERING LEARNING MATERIAL FOR SCHOOLS“.

Project partners, seeking to contribute to expansion of the STEAM initiatives, have set the following goal: to improve the capabilities of pupils in primary and secondary educational institutions in the fields of technology and engineering.

The partners carried out the following tasks:

1) created an online training tool “How To Raise an Inventor” for pupils aged 11-13 (7th grade in most countries) to provide pupils skills in STEAM and contribute to the formation of their future career choices. The tool is available in English, Lithuanian, Dutch, Polish and Latvian;

2) 9 teachers tested the training tool with 101 pupils in three schools in Lithuania, Latvia and the Netherlands in classes or as an extra-curricular activity during school year 2018/2019;

3) evaluated the effectiveness of the tool;

4) improved teachers’ STEAM subject knowledge and methodological skills;

5) disseminated the project’s results to a wide audience in partner countries and outside them.

The training tool “How to Raise an Inventor” consists of four modules. Teachers and learners acquire knowledge about the whole set of tools: Microbit, Lego Mindstorms and 3D technologies.

Modules “Micro:bit”, “The Art of Making” and “Build an Arm Wrestling Robot” are based on the formulation of real-life technical problems, hands-on application of tools and search for problem solution by applying “design thinking” methodology, which brings together skills in creative, critical and interdisciplinary thinking, teamwork and cooperation. The fourth module “How to Make Ideas and How They Travel” cultivates pupils’ user-value orientation and the ability to turn technological solutions into business solutions. This way, lesson materials link technical education with entrepreneurship training.

Teacher’s notes with methodology instructions and tips accompany each lesson or project. Based on teacher’s feedback after the testing period, module developers prepared recommendations about the use of each module. This makes the materials possible to use even for beginner teachers. All four modules together are sufficient for weekly technology classes or extra-curricular activities for the entire school year.

The intellectual outcome was greatly influenced by the fact that the partnership managed to attract partners who are very experienced in creating lesson materials. They also cooperated with technology experts from outside of the partnership.

The research prepared by partners evaluated pupils’ skills and attitudes towards STEAM. It showed that most pupils score their long-term interest in STEAM at about a 3 out of 5, with the distribution being slightly skewed towards choosing a career in STEAM. However, based on self-evaluation, pupils’ general STEAM skills and interest in STEAM did not increase. This might be due to the fact that pupils were learning things that are generally difficult, and this made them realize how much they do not know yet. But the survey clearly indicated that pupils think that their knowledge and skills related to project modules have improved.

An expert conclusion about the suitability of the lesson materials was provided by STEAM professionals and methodology experts. It will be used for further dissemination and use of the training materials by other STEAM orientated schools and individual teachers, self-learners in partner countries as well as worldwide.

The biggest positive impact in the partnership has been expected and occurred in partner schools. In Latvia, technological training will become compulsory from 2020 as per state regulation. The project has helped the partner school from Riga to become fully prepared for this in advance. At the Lithuanian school, the training tool has helped to enhance the content of engineering lessons with new technological tools. At the Dutch School, the project was the first encounter with STEAM teaching. All schools continue learning from the project’s lesson materials in the framework of their curriculum.

Project’s impact outside partner organizations was reached thanks to numerous dissemination events and learning activities organized for pupils and teachers. Through the network of associated partners, the strategic principle of joining formal, non-formal and self-driven learning is implemented. We expect that the number of people who benefit from the project will rise even more after the project’s official end.

Multiplier event in Latvia

The partners of our Erasmus+ Strategic Partnerships project “How to Raise an Inventor. Technology and Engineering Learning Materials for Schools”, Riga State Gymnasium No 2, held a multiplier event in Riga

The purpose of the multiplier event was to disseminate information about the four newly produced modules to technology, physics, programming and IT teachers of Riga and various schools outside Riga. It was planned as an 8 h professional development training course for 30 teachers of Riga and Latvia.

The Multiplier event on October 19th, 2019 gathered 30 teachers from 7 different schools of Riga, from 7 different towns and cities outside Riga (Valmiera, Limbaži, Tukums, Aknīste, Daugavpils, Aizkraukle, Cēsis) and from 3 technology clubs.

In the first part of the day the teachers received information about the project results, activities, makeathon in the Netherlands, watched the project video, the video demonstrating Rube Goldberg machine, etc. The first part included also general information about the 2 modules: the 3D module (Build an Arm Wrestling Robot) and the integrated module (How to Make Ideas and How They Travel).

The secnd part of the multiplier event was the training of teachers into two parallel groups for Microbit and Lego technologies. Each group produced one project from the module materials. The teachers also learned how to adjust the material to different age groups.

According to questionnaire results, the feedback from 30 teachers is very positive. They say the provided teaching material is of good quality, it is very useful and appropriate for technology syllabus, applicable for various age groups, engaging for students. They think the provided training was conducted in a professional way, the teachers Tatjana Strigalova and Elza Linina demonstrated excellent communication and demonstration skills. Some of the final comments:

– This was really inspiring,

– The modules should be disseminated among teachers as much as possible.

– The design process was really interesting.

– We had enough time to build the models, but I wish we had even more for programming them.

All participants praised the good work of the workshop leaders and the tasty lunch. The teachers were really motivated and came from far distances on a day-off.

Outcomes of the event:

  • 30 teachers of various schools have received professional development certificates for Microbit and Lego technologies.
  • The estimated number of students who will receive education from the trained teachers on October 19th in school year 2019/2020 is 550 students of age 9-19 years.
  • 30 teachers have received a folder of printed and digital resources for all 4 produced modules so that they can continue learning online independently and pass this knowledge to his colleagues in their schools. This ensures sustainability of the project results.
  • Contacts for further professional development training opportunities were established.

Project grant agreement no. 2017-1-LT01-KA201-035284.

Below are some fotos from the event.

Dissemination to foreign pupils

On October 24th, the School of Robotics was attended by participants from the Erasmus+ project “Let’s improve with STEAM” from Turkey, Italy and other countries. As many as 30 students learned 3D designing using materials from our coordinated How to Raise an Inventor Erasmus+ KA2 Strategic Partnerships project “How to Raise an Inventor. Technology and Engineering Learning Materials for Schools”. Pupils were supported by teachers at Robotics Schools and 10 accompanying teachers from visiting countries!

Project grant agreement no. 2017-1-LT01-KA201-035284.

Below are some fotos from the event.

Multiplier event in Poland

The partners of our Erasmus+ Strategic Partnerships project “How to Raise an Inventor. Technology and Engineering Learning Materials for Schools”, Fundacja ECD from Gdansk, Poland held a multiplier event in Gdansk.

Purpose of the event: to present the results of the project and to introduce the intellectual output to the educational community in Poland; to give teachers a hands-on experience about the modules. Partner Fundacja ECD together with RoboCamp, an associated partner in the project, organized the event. It took place at Gdańsk Science and Technology Park. The target audience was school principals and teachers from different schools. Some of the teachers already teach STEAM during classes or extra-curricular activities, while others had little prior experience. Audience also included representatives from out-of-school education institution Youth Palace.

The event was divided into two parts: theoretical and practical. In the first part, coordinator from Fundacja ECD Katarzyna Gliniecka presented the project’s background, goals, structure, partner responsibilities, main activities and outcomes. She showed all four modules and provided information, where and how they can be accessed. Insights from the research were presented. They included statistical data about pupils’ attitude and skills towards STEAM and feedback from the focus group discussions.

The second part of the event was organized in the form of a robotics workshop, where participants could try out the intellectual contribution created by Fundacja ECD – The Art of Making module. It teaches how to build and program robots using LEGO Education Mindstorms EV3 robot kits to perform specific tasks, focused mainly on art. During the workshop, participants built and programmed the spirograph from various sets of LEGO bricks, while having fun and asking lots of questions. The guests were very interested in the results of the project and admired the enormity of work and lesson materials produced.

The culmination of the event was a lottery for participants where they could win a Lego set for their school. This prize was established by event organizers. A teacher from a school in Gdansk was the lucky one. Each participant received a certificate stating knowledge gained during the workshop.

After the official part, informal communication continued over snacks and coffee. This has given a chance to get to know teachers in person and discuss the use of the project’s results in their schools.

Main outcomes of the event:

  1. the event was visited by more than 30 participants;
  2. project‘s results were disseminated to teachers and school representatives on a personal level;
  3. teachers obtained information from module developers about the use of the training tool in classroom;
  4. attention of the public was drawn to technological education in schools and innovative STEM tools.

Dissemination of the event was organized by inviting teachers. It was decided not to have pupils as target audience for this event as main emphasis was on teachers as most likely to bring project’s material to schools.

Dissemination by Latvian partners

Project partner Riga State Gymnasium No 2 held a Micro:bit workshop in Riga by teacher Tatjana Strigalova  for Polish students from the town Krosno. This was a cooperation event with their project partners from another Erasmus+ project “You-Topia”.

The 6 Polish students learned the basics of Micro:bit programming and completed the lesson “Stone, Scissors, Paper” game, as well as tested the programming reacting to various movements.  

Lesson material was taken from the Erasmus + project “How to Raise an Inventor”.

The training materials created during the project are also available free of charge to all teachers at www.play.gaminu.eu (registration required). The material consists of 4 modules: 3D Design and Print, Microbit and Lego Mindstorms Programming, and Engineering). And – most importantly – it is available in English, Lithuanian, Latvian, Dutch and Polish!

News from the Dutch school

Pupils from the Dutch school Signum KC de Haren, our partners in the Erasmus + project HOW TO RAISE AN INVENTOR. TECHNOLOGY AND ENGINEERING LEARNING MATERIAL FOR SCHOOLS, learned building and programming with microbit, Lego Mindstorms, and 3D printing. They successfully completed the entire training course and created a Goldberg machine at the final project event!

All methodological material is available freely and for free on our and partner sites, accessible via https://play.gaminu.eu.

The project will continue until 2019. November 1.

Project grant agreement no. 2017-1-LT01-KA201-035284.