PROJECT CONTENT

Using the Canadian model for Basic Skills we developed our own definition of this notion in Sandefjord. Besides literacy, numeracy, computer skills, employability, we emphasized the importance of intra- and interpersonal skills. Visiting the participating countries, experiencing and examining the current adult teaching methods and materials with the help of our definition, we aim at raising an awareness about their strengths and weaknesses. Thus, we hope to gain an insight into truly effective ways of teaching basic skills at the workplace. In the long run we want to cooperate with the other learning partnership which we developed our own definition with in Sandefjord. Their special focus on basic skills (intrapersonal skills) and our experience could create a unique teaching material which could be used internationally in the world of adult education.

The motivation for this project is our personal experience as teachers: a ceaseless effort to be more effective, to be able to help more and more students to become successful and satisfied with their lives. Adult learners are a fragile group of people to teach (so is every age group from a certain viewpoint, certainly).Due to their different cultural heritage, different countries developed teaching materials for adults with different focuses, which when collected could help the participants take every possible aspect into consideration and as a result of it, a key to the successful learning/teaching process can be found.

Why is the project needed?
First of all, the participating countries, both teachers and students can benefit from experiencing different methods of teaching and learning basic skills, as effective techniques can be adopted from each other. Also, there is a strong likelihood of organisations changing their methodology for a more useful one due to the above mentioned exchange of experience. Secondly, discovering and rediscovering cultural diversity may open new vistas in the participants lives, making them more tolerant, open and curious European citizens, who are ready to change and ready to act when needed. Last but not least, in the not so near future we are planning to develop new teaching materials merging the experience of two partnerships working on the same topic with different focuses within the framework of a multilateral project.

The Canadian model for Basic Skills was our starting point to work out our own definition. Basic Skills are made up of literacy, numeracy, computer skills, employability skills and instead of communication we used the terms 'inter and intrapersonal skills. All of us agreed that from the viewpoint of success these latter two are key factors and in most countries are rather neglected. However, without the right kind of attitude no learning process can be successful. When visiting the participants' countries, the main objective is to examine which aspects of basic skills are taught in an outstandingly effective way and which areas need to be developed. To do so, our working definition is about to be used as a framework. Having identified the strengths and weaknesses of each teaching methods, we are planning to provide each other with teaching materials for the missing or neglected areas of adult education. In the long run we would like to share the experience we will have gained due to the partnership with the participants of another would be partnership, who want to work on the same issue with a special focus. In the form of a multilateral project with joint efforts we want to create effective teaching materials which is internationally available and usable in the field of teaching basic skills for adults.