Early morning, raining, another workday. According to my stereotypes, these words cannot relate with joy, although these were also the characteristics of the LEHUA Day of Joy. Now, let’s take a look from a different perspective!
Zoo, play, laugh, free learning, quality time. Does this sound better?
The Rogers Foundation and the Budapest Zoo organized a Day of Joy on 21.11.2017. The topic was our Erasmus plus project: Learning Humanity from Animals (LEHUA). There were 35 of us, 4 members from the Zoo, 8 from Rogers and 23 from other institutions. There were school psychologists, dog therapists, forest school leaders, professors, university students, environmental educators, and teachers. All of them have a connection with both humans and animals. Furthermore, we had Gábor „Hajti” Hajtman, an EVS volunteer from the Rogers Foundation who helped a lot in the organising process before, during and after.
What did we do?
We closed the day with a huge amount of JOY.
On 23rd of November an ’Interactive workshop’ was organized within the LEHUA project by TANDEM in Komárno, at Zichy-pont. The main aim of the workshop was to introduce all the already reached results of this Erasmus+ project. Some of the intellectual outputs were also introduced to the participants. Feedbacks were collected in regard to additional work on intellectual outputs.
There were 20 professionals participating on the Interactive workshop. Among them were teachers, trainers, youth workers, scouts, undergraduates and psychologists.
The event was opened by the project coordinator, Mária Borvák. She introduced TANDEM and the LEHUA project. Finally, she presented our partner organizations: Rogers Foundation for Person-Centered Education (HU), Bzdapest Zoo and Botanical Garden (HU), Milvus Group Assiciation (RO).
The participants were invited to look at all the themes and method presented during the day keeping in mind the principles, and evaluate in what forms are each principle relevant to the given approach.
Three workshops were held: two about animals and play and a little about story-centred work, then an interactive evaluation.
Participants had to introduced themselves in a very extraordinary way: after telling their names they were asked to tell a personal (funny, sad, disgusting, frightening or lovely) story about an animal. Shortly after the opening circle the participants were invited to play games taken from the Best Practice Collection. Games were facilitated by Lilla Balázs.
The story-centred work was based on fable: The Cockroach who held a mountain on his back (by Daniel Quinn). This part of the event was focusing on self-knowledge and the workshop-part was based on symbols: leaves, stones and walnuts.
Participants were enchanted by the whole workshop.
The third part of the event was the interactive evaluation, leaded by Mária Borvák. The Bloom taxonomy method was introduced to the participants. They were asked to classify the themes of the Training Curriculum, afterward they evaluated the practices taken from the Best Practice Collection and the whole workshop.
Before the closing circle participants were asked to design a mandala from nuts, leafage, flowers, branches, cones, etc.
In the closing circle the organizers met with participants´ feelings – which were very positive on the whole. The very last thing was giving a written feedback to the organizers.
According to their feedback, the LEHUA Interactive workshop was a success, as stakeholders left inspired and motivated to use the methods and the practices in their work, to learn more about our projects and also they had the chance to discuss issues with their colleagues and friends.
The Multiplier Events organized by the Milvus Group were held on the 9th of October and on the 21st of November, 2017. While in October, we put more emphasis on presenting the Best Practice Collection, testing several games and activities, at the second event, in the centre of discussion was the presentation and testing of the training material.
The first event took place at the conference room of the Museum of Târgu Mureş, where 12 participants and 5 Milvus Group’s representatives participated. Some of the activities took place outdoor, in the courtyard of the Medieval Fortress. The participants were from various associations, such as Outward Bound Romania, Adept Foundation, Schubz Education Center, Târgu Mureş Zoo, Joseph Haltrich Highschool Sighișoara, University of Art. They were happy to participate in the activities, and even enriched them with new ideas. One of their favorite games was the bats' orientation, where we could expand the Best Practice Collection with 2 variations based on their feedback.
The second event was announced through a Facebook event and here 2 Milvus Group representatives and 10 participants were present. They represented the Zöldfény Foundation, Târgu Mureş Zoo and the Association of Kulcs Social Pedagogues. After presenting the project and partners, we briefly outlined the structure of the training session from February, and we also tried several activities. The touch box (called the box of senses) had the greatest success, here with the help of touching they had to recognize a snail or shell house, the horn of a roe deer, or even a bird nest. The participants received a short presentation of the project and the project’s brochure.
Both events ended with collecting feedback.