Results of the Talent Education program
In order to value the results of the Talent Education program it is good to consider the problem definition and its objectives:
How can talented be encouraged to use their talents during their school career to prevent underachievement and early school leaving and what is needed in the context of cooperation between educational sectors and other stakeholders, the skills of teachers and teaching materials?
Objectives of the Talent Education program
The partners want to develop a sustainable and structural approach which supports top talent in the further development of their talent and thus preventing underachievement or dropouts. Personalized learning, continuous learning and cooperation with other organizations than educational institutions are important principles.
As a result the project "Talent Education" chooses for the following objectives from the Erasmusplus program:
- Improving range of lessons;
- Strengthening the skills of the teachers;
- Improving cooperation in and around education.
Target groups of the project are the talented preschoolers (toddlers), school pupils in primary and secondary education and their teachers. Schools and regional or local authorities are also part of the target group. The project is implemented transnational, because transnational cooperation increases the effectiveness of integration and understanding of legal contexts in the chain approach (collaboration between different educational institutions and regional embedding).
The strategy of the project is:
- to focus on the role of teachers. All activities are organized to enhance their role in identifying talent and in challenging talented with adaptive education, and to empower them with knowledge, skills and tools.
- to choose some “strategic elements” in the chain of education in which a new approach could be effective and could have impact on all education.
The consortium chooses for:
- identification and adaptive approach at a very early stage (2 – 6 years);
- education in metacognitive skills in primary education (10- 12 years);
- applying Design Thinking in education on three levels of education: primary education (11 – 12 years), secondary education (14-15 and 16-17) years;
- differentiation in the classroom based on a personalized approach in secondary education (all grades).
- to develop new education in practice: PLC’s of teachers in all subjects, coaching on the job, pilots in classrooms and organizing feedback and feed forward, exchange of students of all ages to apply the method of Design Thinking and collaborating with their teachers in a living laboratory.
- to gather all methods and developed approaches and tools in a Toolkit for Teachers which is available for all teachers and could be applied in practice immediately.
To achieve the above objectives, a number of activities have been carried out:
- Development of new education for Metacognitive Skills, Design Thinking, Differentiation in secondary education based on “Teaching with Perspectives” (ICLON- Leiden University), new methods and tools for educators and teachers in pre-school and first grades of primary schools;
- Improvement of skills of Teachers for teaching talented children by training, organizing PLC’s and development of manuals and lesson examples available for all teachers;
- Eight exchange programs for students testing Design Thinking as a challenging methodology;
- Research on Metacognition in 15 schools to measure the effect of a new methodology on metacognition;
- Transfer between educational sectors and cooperation with other sectors, adapted to each city involved in the program. The Leiden Approach for Talent Development (Leidse Aanpak) served as a prototype;
- Self-evaluation of impact, an evaluation methodology, developed by PLATO (Research Institute of Leiden University) to enhance impact on all innovation;
- Dissemination activities in all countries, focused on the sharing of the Talent Education Toolkit for Teachers (TETT) developed in and by the project. Organization of conferences in all countries and an international congress “Focus on Talent” (June 2018).
In all four educational lines of the program (Practical Differentiation, Design Thinking, Metacognitive Skills and Challenging Young Children) manuals, tools for identification of talent and lesson-plans have been developed and good practices described.
All these tools are available in the Talent Education Toolkit or Teachers (TETT). The Toolkit is available in English and Dutch language and (partly) in Czech. A publication in Slovenian language is scheduled.
For every Toolkit a brochure is available in English or Dutch. The leaflet contains a summary of or introduction to the Toolkit.
Reports are made for Research on the Implementation of Metacognitive skills in Czech, Slovenian en Dutch schools (lead by Dr. Marcel Veenman (Instituut voor Metacognitie Onderzoek) and Dr. Šárka Portešová (Masaryk University, Brno) and on the Impact and Self-evaluation methodology of the Talent Education project (lead by Dr. Jaap van Lakerveld and Drs. Ingrid Gussen).
A scientific article about the chain approach (system approach) of talent education in Leiden (Leiden Approach) is written to be a published on websites or in magazines. The Erasmusplus program Talent Education functioned as a “fly-wheel” in the evolution of the Leiden Approach to a wider and more inclusive approach (Leidse Aanpak 2.0).
At the International Conference “Focus on Talent” (Leiden, 6st of June 2018 ) the results of the project were presented by several teachers involved in and shared in workshops with many teachers from Leiden and abroad.
Impact can be measured in the number of teachers and students who are directly or indirectly involved in and influenced by the program or the results of the program (horizontal impact), the way institutions or networks are infected (vertical), the way educational practices are changed (transversal Impact) or the sustainability of the outcomes of the project (longitudinal).
Factors to be mentioned:
- a large involvement of teachers (141) and students (292)
- teachers and students who are motivated to go along with their new skills and knowledge, applying for instance on stipendiums scholarships or expanding their skills in PLC’s or MOOC’s
- a rich Toolkit for all subjects of step-action plans, methods, lesson plans, project descriptions and so further; this Toolkit has not only a (tested and proven) impact on the participants but can provoke a sustainable impact on Talent Education in general
- students indicate to be challenged and motivated to deeper learning by using the new methods and are delighted to have more space for learning
- the evolution of the Leiden Approach for Talent Development to a more inclusive approach
- a better transfer for knowledge and approach for identification and approaches of talent between sectors (especially for younger children in Pre-Schools or Kindergartens and Primary Schools)
- the expansion of new methods Metacognitive skills, Practical Differentiation and Design Thinking to other teachers and schools outside the TE project
- activities in all partner cities or regions for developing building stones for a chain oriented approach of Talent Development
- concrete results in achievements of students, e.g. rewards in regional and national contests (Czech Republic) or CITO Eindtoets (Leiden) after training metacognitive skills. This is in accordance with the positive outcome of the scientific study in the project.
More results and information about the impact of the program are in Evaluation Report.