START LEARNING BOX, n° 2019-1-LT01-KA201-060696-945805000 (Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices, KA201 – Strategic Partnerships for school education) 2019-2021

The strategic partnership project Start Learning Box connects educational institutions, nongovernmental
organizations and the business enterprise. This project will be coordinated by Vilnius
Silas School, and implemented with the assistance of partners Tallinn Kadaka School, Borge School,
AGIOS SPYRIDONAS SPECIAL SCHOOL, Eurl Aristote and Ltd “Baltų lankų” vadovėliai”. The
project is intended for 6-7 year old children with special educational needs, and for the development
of their skills in pre-school institutions.
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2006), the European
Disability Strategy 2010-2020, and the strategic tasks of implementation of justice in education
provided by the Council of Europe encourage all countries to implement the inclusive education
policy until 2020. Inclusive education is a new keyword in today’s school life for all the cooperating
institutions. Inclusive education must begin from a pre-school age, therefore this project is aimed at
the development of a high quality aid, i.e., an innovative teaching tool Start Learning Box and a digital
education tool eBox, thus improving the availability and quality of education at an early age in order to
achieve successful adaptation in school. When working with the innovative products of this project,
pre-school teachers and educational assistance specialists will be able to successfully integrate
children with special education needs into general education groups/classes.
Main objectives of the project:

  • improve curriculum quality and effectiveness by developing a teaching/learning tool that would
    enable teachers to successfully implement inclusive education ideas;
  • increase the motivation of teachers and educational assistance specialists, and provide them with
    professional development possibilities by using the already available general and special
    competences;
  • increase the availability of pre-school education for children with SEN.
    Highly qualified teachers and educational assistance specialists will create the content of the
    aforesaid tool according to the topics provided in Transnational Project Meetings while working in the
    institutions of their country, by working in teams, sharing good pedagogical experience with their
    colleagues, and communicating with partners (including associated partners) via e-mail, webconferences,
    and Skype. The technical staff of the project – artists, layout designers – will
    communicate with teachers with the help of IKT technologies and platforms in order to learn to
    prepare and design teaching aids for children with SEN. Tests and assessments of the developed
    product will be carried out during the project (Status Quo, product piloting, project quality and impact
    assessment).
    Expected project results:
  • the developed innovative teaching aid (together with individualized plan recommendations) is
    intended for pre-school children with SEN, and will be translated to English, Lithuanian, French,
    Greek, Turkish, Norwegian, and Estonian languages;
  • better foreign language skills of participants, team work skills, understanding of collegiality;
  • positive attitude towards the European Union project and its provided opportunities for professional
    and personal improvement;
  • improved competences of special and general education teachers and educational assistance
    specialists;
  • deeper understanding of education and policy frameworks in cooperating countries;
  • more efficient application of interconnections of formal and informal education in practice;
  • rational use of the potential and accumulated good practice of motivated and energetic professional
    teachers and educational assistance specialists in order to create added value in education;
  • the changed views and attitudes of all the participants of the project regarding inclusive education
    and general learning outcomes of children;
  • more active inclusion of scientists and business representatives in education and development of
    innovations.
    The intellectual product – teaching/learning tool Start Learning Box will be innovative in both its form
    and content, and tested in 5 different countries: Lithuania, Estonia, Norway, Cyprus and France. It is
    estimated that the product developed during the project will be tested by 29 educational institutions
    that teach 6-7 year old children with special educational needs.
    The likely long-term impact of Start Learning Box project – positive attitude towards inclusive
    education, better circumstances for its implementation; higher motivation to learn among children
    with SEN participating in the project, developed independence and the competence of learning to
    learn; project teams in educational institutions will learn to effectively manage their time and
    resources from their business partner; by cooperating with disabled children and their families,
    business representatives will become more socially sensitive and empathetic, which will lead to
    better quality of work.