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Meeting in Finland

A short-term joint staff training event was held in Kaivoksela day-care centre in Vantaa (Finland) from 16th to 20th May, 2016. There were four international teams combined of researchers and teachers from Lithuania, Finland, Poland and United Kingdom. Overall, 17 adult people participated in meeting and training sessions.

The main goals of this event were twofold. First of all, international team meeting started with theoretical orientation to developmental aspects of narrative play and familiarizing with conceptual aspects of adult’s role in narrative play. Secondly, all training event participants had practical narrative play activities with local teachers and children and planned next steps of NEPL project in their home country.

Our activities in Finland:

- First 2 days were focused on teaching/learning of NEPL didactics.

On day 1 teachers familiarized with Narrative Play Pedagogy principles in lectures, small group work and discussion type activities. All participants got to know what practical didactics of play solutions and variations of adult role in play are.

On day 2 international teachers had to prepare for the participation in narrative play and familiarize with the Kaivoksela day-care centre working methods. They were introduced with the content of the two next days in Narrative children play group. Meanwhile, international researchers’ team had a separate meeting for Project planning including discussion about preparation of guidelines, new content of further teaching, and assessment of teaching output.

- 2 more days were addressing learning through practical realization.

Day 3 involved active participation in “free play” in Kaivoksela day-care centre. Teachers were introduced to children. They practiced play observation, used video cameras and started orientating children for narrative play for the next day. After practical part, all training team and researchers had a discussion on how to guarantee basic play skills for children and what is the adult role in free play.

Day 4 was focused on participating in narrative play activities. All international team observed children narrative play and had an afternoon session with the analyses of morning experience.

- On Day 5 all attention was given to reflection of the week, summarizing and planning the next stage in home countries. International team of teachers reflected on the experience of activities and start planning the next meeting in Poland. Researchers focused on developing guidelines for narrative environments for play and learning. Finally, all participants of this short-term staff training event were awarded a professional development certificate.