World ORT Organisation for educational Resourses and Technological training
Educating since 1880

20/07 2012

The results of the International seminar for teachers and school specialists of ORT network schools and partners on the topic "Teaching Technology and Entrepreneurship at Schools" were summarized

In the period from July, 5-12, 2012, international seminar of teachers and school specialists  of ORT network and partner schools on teaching of technology and entrepreneurship at school was  held in Odessa. The seminar was attended by 22 teachers from Bulgaria, Estonia, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine. Classes and workshops were conducted by the invited speakers from Israel, Russia, Ukraine and Switzerland. The seminar was sponsored by the World ORT and the Hewlett-Packard Company.

The first part of the workshop began with a review of the HP LIFE program, presented by Ana Barfield, Training Programmes Specialist of the Microenterprise Acceleration Institute MEA-I (Geneva, Switzerland), which developed the program. Next, the participants were familiarized with the report of the "Global Entrepreneurship Week" in 2011 acting and discussed the work plan for 2012 and made their presentations on the HP LIFE program implementation in educational process. In conclusion, of the first part a discussion of modern approaches to teaching the basics of entrepreneurship in secondary schools was organized under the supervision of the Director of the Center for Youth Entrepreneurship Moscow International Higher Business School MIRBIS (Moscow, Russia) Elena Pereverzeva.

The second part was devoted to consideration of the "Technology for All", developed by the World ORT as a pedagogical base of the project  aimed to extend students’ opportunities to study modern technology. This part also included workshops and business games in design and technology, discussing techniques and sharing experience of teaching technology in ORT network and partner schools.

Within the seminar’s program particular attention was paid to the Robotics course, robots’ programming environments, reviewing and discussing the features of educational and methodical complex "Introduction to Robotics", Robotics in education in the ORT network schools. Also, participants had the opportunity not only to see a demonstration of the models of robots had been taking part in international competitions “Robotraffic” in Israel, but also to communicate during the videoconference with Evgeny Korchnoy Director of the Leumi Robotics Center, Haifa Technion Institute, based on which these events take place each year . Workshop participants met with Alexey Reshta, Senior Software Designer at Luxoft, a leading software producing company in Eastern Europe. Thanks to the help and support of Luxoft company teams of Russian and Ukrainian ORT network schools were able to go to Israel and to take part in Robotraffic competitions.

The range of topics discussed at the workshop was quite broad. As the ORT Russia Director Sergei Gorinsky said: "This year we take an experiment to include three different topics in the program: "Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship", "Technology" and "Robotics." We did it because we believe that technology education at schools, which is the hallmark of ORT in the last decade, should be focused on the one hand, high technology, but on the other hand, on the innovative business ... Not just to invent something, one must also know how to set up business so that your ideas are translated into useful public goods and services. We are proud that our partners in the implementation of programs of technological and entrepreneurial education in the ORT network schools are such recognized leaders of high-tech business, science and education as Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Cisco, Kaspersky Lab, IBS, Luxoft, Technion (Haifa, Israel) , Microenterprise Acceleration Institute MEA-I (Geneva, Switzerland) and Moscow International Higher Business School MIRBIS (Moscow, Russia). We hope that the meeting and workshop with the representatives from several of these organizations were helpful and interesting."

After the seminar, the participants left their impressions and reviews:

Ana Barfild, Training Programmes Specialist, Microenterprise Acceleration Institute MEA-I (Geneva, Switzerland):
"Overall, my impression is that the program is being implemented really solidly in the FSU, perhaps better than anywhere else.  To a large extent that is because there is an 'umbrella' organisation, ORT, that implements the program in a structured way, and provides lots of opportunities to LIFE trainers to exchange their ideas, best practices, materials etc."

Galina Brusnitsyna, Director of Lawson ORT Career Center  (Ekaterinburg, Russia):

"I liked the integrated subjects especially: a spectrum of variations of how to teach a particular course. In the ORT over the years a huge methodological and pedagogical experience has been accumulated, a holistic understanding of how to work in what direction to go was formed. Plus, each center and school has their own specific findings and developments adapted for local conditions, but that certainly will be interesting to others. There are many new specialists and teachers in ORT, young professionals and teachers are coming – it is necessary to provide them with our experience, to seek ways to interest them in promising areas of work, and new resources. In addition, it seems to me that ORT developments should be adopted more widely. I am very glad for our Ukrainian colleagues, when I got to know that their experience in teaching “Technology in Business" course has gained recognition almost at the state level. These workshops, as it was in Odessa, really priceless in terms of communication with colleagues. Although the discussion was very hot, of course. But they must be like this when people are in fan for a common cause, when they are interested in what they are discussing. And special thanks to the Odessa team for their work, for the excellent organization and warm welcome."

Iryna Usatenko, Computer Science Teacher, ORT Technology Lyceum (Kiev, Moscow):

"The purpose of my participation in this seminar was to find out how and in what manner the subject of" Technology "being taught in other schools, to learn more about HP Life and to discuss issues related to the Robotics teaching and to communicate with new and acquainted colleagues. Do I think that goal is reached? No less than 95%. Why not 100%? Because the seminar was so rich, so full of heated controversy and debate that we just did not have time to consider all the interesting questions before the end. As always, the hours in a day is not enough to discuss anything you want. Special thanks to Elena Perevezeva, Ana Barfield and Sergei Gorinskiy for the interesting and informative training sessions and master classes. And I want to express my gratitude to the organizers of the seminar and to all the staff of the ORT Center in Odessa. Especially Igor Kot, who in a short time developed a great CMO in Robotics – just now ready to be taking into the work. I would like to note also Samara ORT school and ORT school in Sofia. Developments are very interesting. Samara and Bulgarian counterparts are just great. Where they have time for all this? Ivailo Ivanov showed a very interesting presentation on "Teaching Design", Irina Pogodina and Olga Parodina from Samara - on the theme "Technology", and again courses  are absolutely ready - take it and work. Of course, we will take and work. It is unfortunate that the time has flown by so quickly. And it is a pity that we are meeting and communicating so rarely. Let's talk more often. Through webinars at least. See you soon. "

Irina Silaeva, Program Manager, ANO "ORT"  

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