TOY Project PLUS: Together Old and Young

Together Old & Young: Practitioners Learning and Upscaling Skills

TOY Project Partners at the launch in Leiden November 2016

Linking Generations NI has recently become a partner in a new project called TOY-PLUS: Together Old and Young Practitioners Learning and Upscaling Skills.

TOY-PLUS is the natural follow-up to all the research and practice carried out during the past four years by the TOY partners. We identified the lack of training opportunities and adequate knowledge about intergenerational learning principles and practice as a major gap to ensure the implementation of meaningful and quality intergenerational experiences between young children and older people. The project TOY-PLUS will close this gap.
TOY-PLUS is funded by the Erasmus Plus programme – Adult Education (KA2) and will run from 2016 to 2018. It is coordinated by International Child Development Initiatives – ICDI (Netherlands).

Partners:

The partner organisations for TOY-PLUS are: The Beth Johnson Foundation (UK) and Linking Generation Northern Ireland, Dublin Institute of Technology (Ireland), Center for Quality Education Step by Step (Slovenia), Azienda Speciale ReteSalute (Italy), Hellenic Open University (Greece), Municipality of Lleida (Spain).

Activities:

TOY-PLUS will develop, test and disseminate an innovative online curriculum and methodology (MOOC) in IG work for practitioners in early childhood education and care (ECEC), social care and community development work. Specific modules in the curriculum will focus on including newly arrived and resident migrants and Roma in IG practice, as a means of fostering intercultural dialogue, participation and social inclusion.
We will also develop and test an IG quality self-assessment tool (TOY Quality Stamp) with agreed dimensions of quality for local authorities and educational and care services.

Target groups:

Participants in TOY-PLUS will be ECEC and Social Care practitioners and community development workers from 5 countries: Italy, Ireland, Slovenia, Spain and the UK. They will participate in a multi-faceted training and education experience which will incorporate workshops, international training involving study visits, joint reflection and exchange of good practice in IGL, piloting of a massive open online course (MOOC) and creating a peer learning community for IGL.
Other participants in TOY-PLUS will be staff of local authorities and ECEC, and Social Care services, young children (0-10 years) and older adults (65 years +) all of whom will participate in the development and testing of a TOY Quality Stamp. The TOY Quality Stamp will be awarded to local authorities and service providers meeting the IGL dimensions of quality.

Impact and Outcomes:

The impact of TOY-PLUS will be that ECEC and Social Care practitioners will develop skills and competences to deliver successful IGL activities involving young children and older adults, paying particular attention to social integration and intercultural dialogue. The TOY-PLUS MOOC, designed to reach hundreds of practitioners internationally from 2018, will result in increased skills to develop, manage, deliver and monitor IGL practices Europe- and even world-wide.
The TOY Quality Stamp process combined with the TOY-PLUS training will result in improved quality of IGL practice.

For more information on the project visit: http://www.toyproject.net