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This is a reference for Andrei Popescu

CONNECTOR, 2 editions (2015-16)

The training activity took place
in Cluj Napoca / Bucharest, Romania
organised by Romanian National Agency for Erasmus+
30 June - 6 July 2015 / 5-11 July 2016

Aims & objectives

The main objectives of the event were:
- to promote non-formal learning
- to create connections between non-formal learning, formal education and vocational training
- to develop a space for identifying the common needs and challenges of all the stakeholders involved
- to develop solutions for the identified needs and challenges through projects and network activities
- to create a collaborative space for sharing methods, instruments, practices and efficient ideas for learning
- to create future European partnerships, eligible under Erasmus+ programme

Target group & international/intercultural composition of the group & team

The two editions gathered 515 youth workers, trainers, youth leaders, project managers, youth policy makers, EVS mentors/tutors, adult education practitioners, teachers, educators, learning facilitators from more than 30 countries such as Austria, France, Greece, Georgia, Italy, Republic of Moldova, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, to give a few examples.

Training methods used & main activities

Based on the pilot edition (see https://www.salto-youth.net/tools/toy/profile/references/5294) the program and methods changed slightly.

In facilitation activities there were engaged methods such as animation, improvisation theater and open space technology.

The methods used in the two CONNECTOR editions were the following:
Coaching
CODA – Context Oriented Dance
Collaboratiive Mind-Mapping
Concretization with action methods
Contemporary Dance
Delivering Life
Drumming
Ecobatucada
Forum theatre
Glass and sand painting
Graphic facilitation
Imaginary languages in theatre
Improvisation theater
Labyrinth theater
Light and Shadow Theater
Living Exhibition
Living (Human Library)
Living Newspaper
LSD (Lifeskills development)
Origami Theater
Networkability
Nonviolent communication
Norm Criticism
Pantomime as a learning tool
Personal branding
Photovoice
Public Speaking Lab
Socio-Educational Animation
Storytelling
Street animation (social circus, juggling, funambulism)
Visual theatre
Viewpoints

The learning method or instrument selected ahd to respect the following characteristics:
- it can be applied in a various learning contexts (youth, adults, school, interconnected etc)
- is participatory, creative and interactive
- is based on experiential activities
- contain clear learning objectives
- is innovative
- is transferable in order to be easily replicated by the participants in their communities
- it last two days (each day has foreseen four 90 minutes working sessions)
- to be put in practice in Cluj Napoca community the the last two days of the event.

Outcomes of the activity

The participants were trained to use in various real life contexts the learning methods mentioned above though a program as follows:

Day 1 – Incubator+ (sharing)
After a brief official opening the day was dedicated to the exchange of ideas, practices and experiences among participants aiming to identify network activities and projects that can be developed collaboratively.
Incubator+ used an "unconference" methodology inspired by Open Space Technology. As fruit for thoughts, in the opening engaged several inspirational speeches related to educational topic that matter.

Days 2 & 3– Lab+ (learning)
We learn all life long. We use in the process our brains, but we should not forget about our heart as well. Learning effectively is helped by engaging method activating dealing both with our thoughts as well as our feelings approaching knowledge, skills as well as attitudes.
Learning methods and tools (see them above) were shared by experienced facilitators in parallel workshops and training courses (one workshop per participant). Selected participants were able to choose among the methods/tools before CONNECTOR starting day.

Days 4 &5– Lab++ (experimenting)
Participants put in practice the methods they experienced during days 2&3 in the local community through shows, performances or other type of interactive activities. In this regard there was a cooperation with a local festival: Jazz in the Park organized in the Central Park of Cluj-Napoca where this stage of the program took place.

As a result many of the methods were used in the daily activity of the organizations and schools of the participants presented. Also as follow up several Erasmus+ projects were developed and approved aiming to promote active learning and the methods experimented.

References:
https://www.salto-youth.net/tools/european-training-calendar/training/connector-2-0.4864/
http://www.erasmusplus.ro/evenimente-det/vrs/IDev/154
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbNWK1KrY3A&list=PLc92waiFeIKPPsxQb9J3yLRgYIpoIK1ww


Your tasks and responsibilities within the team

Coordinator of the event as well as the over-all facilitator of the event managing the big group facilitation.

As facilitator I was in charge with the group dynamics of the 250 participants, introduction of the resource persons and of the workshops, animation of the event and playing the MC role during the performance days.

I worked on this training for 5/5 days as a full time trainer.

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