WelComm: Communication Skills for Integration of Migrants

"WelComm: Communication Skills for Integration of Migrants" aims at raising awareness of the importance of education for social inclusion of migrants from early age and promoting opportunities for equal start in education. WelComm addresses EU policies on early childhood education and care (ECEC) by developing materials and approaches for supporting school readiness and language acquisition of migrant children and at the same time supporting parents in their role as the main educators of their children during the early years.

Among others, the WelComm products were designed in order to help children understand better the content of lessons taught, increase their interest in the benefits of learning, raise their motivation and create interest in educational opportunities.

The project aims include:

-          To provide opportunities for equal start in education for migrant children in pre-primary and primary school age

-          To raise awareness of the importance of education for social inclusion from early age among migrant parents

-          To develop innovative tools for non-formal language learning and thus to improve the capacities of migrant organisations and language educators working with migrants

-          To develop basic communication skills in host country language

These objectives were achieved through the development of a Multimedia Learning Kit for Migrant Children – a high-quality, attractive multi-device language product for creating and upgrading language skills of migrant children. 

Year(s): 2014-2016

Target group(s): Migrant children and their parents; Educators working with migrants

Website: www.welcomm-project.com

Methodology

The Multimedia Learning Kit for Migrant Children is based on learning activities with personal involvement of learners on the principles of “learning-by-doing” and “knowing-by-playing”. It promotes inclusive education and basic communication skills in the host country language through a set of interconnected animated films, games and comics allowing learning, repetition, practice and introduction of new language content. 

The WelComm didactics refer to the principles for language learning in early age in migration context and concern the most efficient language learning approaches. The product follows the affective-humanistic approach combined with the seven principles of multimedia learning.

Type of product

Paper-based material ; Online resource ; Video clips / films        

Brief description of the product / outcome / method

Multimedia Learning Kit for Migrant Children:

The Multimedia Learning Kit includes a variety of language learning materials developed in Bulgarian, Dutch, Greek, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish in a tangible form as “WelComm GameBox”, containing a DVD with animated films and video with motion games, 4 board games and a colouring book. In addition to the GameBox there are 6 comic books of fairy tales adapted for the purposes of language learning in each one of the partner language.

All materials are interconnected and allow different combinations for learning and practicing language information in the host country language related to the topics family, house, nutrition, school life, games, numbers, colours, parts of the human body, animals, plants, seasons, etc.

The separate elements of the Kit include:

-          Animated film “WelComm Family”(mini-series) divided within themes and produced as time lapse animation. There are 5 mini-series in each of the 6 target languages dealing with the topics family, house, nutrition, school life and games

-          Language games which can be used as a follow-up of each mini-series providing entertaining activities for practicing the language information already learnt and adding new language content from other topics. The language games are Listen and Move (motion game), Family tree (board game), memory cards (board game), Domino (board game), Ready for School (board game) and Colouring books.

-          Comic books based on adapted fairy tales typical for each of the partner countries. Every comic book includes the fairy tale “The Little Red Riding Hood” in the respective language and one traditional fairy tale from the same country – “The Little Hero of Haarlem” (The Netherlands), “Grandpa and turnip” (Bulgaria), “Pinocchio” (Italy), “The Pied Piper of Hamelin” (Spain), “The Legend of the Three Rivers” (Portugal) and “Anaxagoras, the dragon and the water of immortality” (Cyprus).

 

Informational brochures:

The WelComm project also developed 6 informational brochures for each of the 6 partner countries, targeted at migrant parents as motivation boosters revealing the benefits and opportunities of education and language learning for integration into society. They give an idea about the cultural background of the respective country, some local traditions, customs, and norms of behavior, the structure of the educational system in the country as well as opportunities offered by pre-primary and primary education for successful start in life for young children.

Impact on target groups / Transferability potential

The Kit can be used by language educators and/or parents in order to help children understand better the content of lessons taught, increase their interest in the benefits of learning, raise motivation and create interest in educational opportunities.

The Multimedia Learning Kit contains a broad range of possibilities for application not only with migrant children but with a much wider target group of language learners. The methodology of the Kit also allows its use not only in the 6 target languages but basically in all languages. In this sense, the Multimedia Kit can be used for developing and upgrading language skills of absolute language beginners and language learners of Levels A1 and A2 of the CEFR, both children and adults and both with migrant background and natives for the purposes of learning the host country language or other foreign languages.

The WelComm methodology is considered to be a very suitable approach for different types of context-specific language learning and could be thus adapted to deal with different topics, language content and target groups.

Promoter of the initiative

Name of organization / individual: Co÷peratieve Vereniging Pressure Line U.A. (The Netherlands); KU TU EOOD (Bulgarian partner)

Country: Spain

Website: http://www.pressureline.nl/ ; www.kutu-bg.eu

Contacts: svetlana@pressureline.nl ; raya.stanachkova@gmail.com

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