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Learning place Bio-Farm - ‘train the trainers’ course and platform on farm-based learning for integration - for farmers, educators and coordinators.
Start date: Sep 1, 2016, End date: Aug 31, 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The aim of the Strategic Partnership is to develop an e-learning course and interactive online portal “Learning place Bio-Farm”, offering learning materials and OERs for training of teachers, farmers, staff of coordinating agencies, other pedagogues and NGO staffs as “Bio-Farm Guides. Farm visit as pedagogical methodEducational farm visits provide an alternative and innovative space that enables “informal and formal learning” to take place alongside the more conventional school learning environment. Bio-Farms are ideal for teaching. Groups of children and young people can spend the day on farm in practical way. Visits on the farm are interactive workshops. Learning first-hand on a farm about the realities and challenges of food production can be an important formative experience. Farm visits are ideal practical complement to the knowledge acquired in the schools (biology, geography, economics, ecology and environmental protection, sustainability). Teachers and other pedagogues can find in farm life various links to school curricula and experience areas, to open a practical and non-cognitive access to educational subjects and issues. Integration of disadvantaged youthAttending a farm visit brings particular benefits for teachers, who educate pupils with difficulties in mainstream learning systems. Classes including children and youth with special needs (e.g. refugees, children with migrant background, children with developmental disorders, learning disabilities or social problems) get intensive and new experience for the group apart from conventional patterns of learning and competing in classrooms. Visits on organic farms can support teachers in integrating those children and young people.Integration of refugee childrenA special focus in the project will be refugee children and families. Europe has to face the challenge to integrate a lot of refugees in the society. The “Learning place Bio-Farm” has a big potential to offer this group of people new perspectives outside their living in refugee camps. Visiting the countryside offers an inside into the European culture and nutrition behaviour. Therefore farm visits will also address refugee families and adults. And there are a lot of incentives to learn new vocabulary that is connected with the countryside, agriculture and food commodities. Farm workshops can help to minimize language barriers by practical hands on activities. Besides this the organic farming sector is an economically growing branch that needs motivated young people to work in. Job perspectives (as an organic farmer, bakers, butchers, or shop keepers) can be explained during the farm visits not only for young European pupils but as well for refugees.Training of “Bio-Farm Guides”None of the existing training offers are aimed at supporting teachers, farm guides and staff of coordinating agencies. Thus the project intends to develop a comprehensive European training course and portal with various interactive tools and learning materials to educate “Bio-Farm Guides”. It will support a professionalization of “Bio-Farm Guides” and support them in gaining familiarity with the practicalities and technicalities of hosting farm visits, such as planning and performing the visit in consideration of the health- and safety needs of the age of the visitors. They will gain better knowledge of the needs and possibilities of the schools. They will become familiar with school curriculum, the different subjects and different types of schools and will thereby be able to relate the farm visit directly to the school curriculum and integrate this in the visit. And they will acquire intercultural and social competences for the integration of disadvantage pupils and refugee children. Targeted groups and partnersTarget groups are farmers, coordinating agencies, pedagogues, teachers and educational institutions, other trainers and stakeholders, NGO staffs, representatives of public administration, teachers, other educators and farm guides. The partnerships consists of 8 partners from 7 countries – Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Norway, Poland and the United Kingdom. The partners are institutions with experiences and competences in different areas of farm education.Main results and outputs • Guidelines and Didactic Concept for training (O1)• English pilot e-learning course “Learning place Bio-Farm” (O2)• E-learning course “Learning place Bio-Farm”, adapted to all partner countries and languages in 7 versions (O3)• Educational online portal "Learning place Bio-Farm" (O4)• Testing and Evaluation Report (O5)• Testing and Evaluation Report • International Network • Dissemination workshopsMultiplier events will be national dissemination seminars for farmers, coordinating agencies, pedagogues, teachers and educational institutions, for the presentation of the developed e-learning course will be carried out in all partner countries.
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7 Partners Participants