This conference was organized with the support of the “INnovative Training via Embodied Learning and multi-sensory techniques for inclusive Education” (INTELed) Erasmus+ Project, as part of the multiplier events. Its main purposes were
1) to present the added value of well designed technology-enhanced learning initiatives including the INTELed embodied game-based learning which are aligned to the 21st Century challenges and have impact on the lives of children with disabilities or underprivileged ones, and
2) to discuss lessons learned from the efficient & effective application of the INTELed Teacher Professional Development (TPD) program which had as a main goal to train Special Education Needs (SEN) to effectively apply embodied digital game-based learning sessions to elementary school children with special educational needs.
All the presentation had shown via theory & practice how modern pedagogical considerations and modern technologies can contribute to meeting teaching and learning needs and to empowering children.
Thus, the conference program included two parts:
The first part opened with a keynote speech by Professor Angela Salmon who presented real classrooms experiences from sessions which had been designed and enacted using the pedagogical framework of Thinking Routines, which has been developed within the Project Zero at Harvard College of Education in the USA. Prof Salmon made references to educational cases which involved students with disabilities and highlighted how sessions that are designed following the Thinking Routines framework and active learning pedagogy can help children a lot.
After her keynote speech, two plenary presentations had been made.
1. George Konaris discussed the challenges and initial results of the Spark Project initiative funded by the Hellenic Hope, which is a UK-registered non-profit organization, that aims to promote digital literacy in disadvantaged children in Greece.
2.Professor Symeon Retalis presented an overview of the INTELed project, the main achievements and the experiences gained from applying the INTELed TPD program, as well as from the systematic application of the Kinems embodied learning platform for helping children with learning disabilities improve their skills.
The second part contained presentations by in-service teachers who participated to the project. They discussed the key findings and shared experiences with the audience.
The target audience has been in-service school teachers, public & private school directors, and policy makers from the Institute of Educational Policy at the Ministry of Education in Greece. The number of electronic registrations had been around 80 people.