Intellectual outputs

O1: Instalab: immersive video game for digital life skills development

Coordinated by Forth, a digital learning platform will be developed that will provide interactive educational modules that will cover the main areas identified that families of PWID need training, awareness raising and/or attitude change. The modules will cover issues posing main challenges in the lives of families with PWID, with special focus on younger children. The topics, focusing on this new target group of parents with smaller children are to be around the following agenda: – Road to getting a diagnosis – Collaboration with professionals and development at home – Inclusive and specialised education choices – Universal design – Family and community inclusion – Parent well-being The platform will include tutorial videos for parents of children aged 0-7 years showing practical ideas that can be performed at home every day targeting all developmental areas. We aim to help parents how to “be together” at home with the child in a way that is not a direct development, yet is contributing to the development of the child. We will equip the parents with the capacity to recognize any delay, or unusual pattern in the development of their child, providing a set of objective observational criteria in the various fields of development. These will clearly show if there is any lag. We plan to include parents of children with both visible and invisible disabilities. We will show examples of what are those situations, those movements that work as therapy while being part of the everyday. We will also re-teach parents how to play, as playing is one of the most essential and efficient means of development in a child’s life. This tool helps to release the tension from the parent’s shoulder, as parents often feel not only helpless but also feel the pressure that they should provide professional therapy for their children at home, however, they are not qualified for that. They will feel more competent and self-confident by knowing what they do and how they do it, their mental wellbeing will also improve.

Instalab is available at https://instalab.deusto.es/

O2: SAILS Safe resource for parents

When parents face the fact that their children need professional help in their development, they are often confused: where to start, which therapy to choose, how long to do each of them. Due to their lack of information and despair to do as much as possible within the shortest possible time, they may choose therapies that are counterproductive to each other, as therapists do not communicate with each other. They are looking for answers online, not necessarily finding the most appropriate solutions and therapies. Ideally, there would be a group of experts consisting of movement therapists, speech therapists, psychologists, etc, who see the child as a “case” and would evaluate the condition and suggest the next therapy needed. We plan to put together a methodological handbook/guide/toolkit to establish such case- management centers, that would enable that helpers and any key figures in the life of the child to start to work as a team and to communicate with each other, evaluate the current condition of the child and suggest the next step. This would release the parent from the responsibility of deciding about the therapies without having the necessary knowledge. The target group of this would be the therapists and the parents. The output will be published in a downloadable and printable electronic format.

O3: SAILS guide for teachers

Navigating in the “new normal” has never been more demanding for teachers. Despite the fact that ICT and online tools have been used in education for some time now, with a number of teachers happily taking up the role of content designers (Sotiriou et al 2016), the Covid19 pandemic, with its sudden introduction of distant teaching and learning at large-scale, has exposed gaps in skills relating to issues, such as national and EU regulations on minors and the internet, minors and screen time in the context of school education, student online engagement and participation, student digital behaviour, etc. Taking into consideration that national lockdowns and increased reliance on the internet during this time, it becomes imperative that teachers are up-to-date and confident when it comes to student online safety given certain evidence that overall malign online behaviour has actually increased in the past year. Between March 9-31, as COVID-19 began to reshape the way people live, the Office of the eSafety Commissioner in Australia revealed a 40% spike in reports of ‘harmful and illegal content’, cyberbullying and image-based abuse (The Educator, 2020). This Output will produce a concise and easily digestible guide for teachers on online safety and sound and innovative uses of ICT in the context of the pandemic with a complete set of supporting activities for students, an implementation guide and an evaluation kit. The Output is innovative in the sense that it wishes to bring together various ideas and strategies on the issue of online safety in education that have become dominant in the context of COVID19. There is an apparent difficulty in the teaching community to easily digest legal documents and centrally designed guidelines that relate to the safety of online tools and the internet in general and an ever bigger difficulty in meaningfully implementing them in the classroom, beyond a plain repetition of rules. The pandemic has exposed further such apparent difficulties. The approach will put an emphasis on teacher empowerment, supporting the development of confident practitioners (rather than colleagues who rely heavily on the ICT teacher and those responsible for GDPR). Aside from the fundamental issue of online safety and the prevention of misuses, this intellectual output will offer examples of smart practices as part of the various activities and guides. This guide will include also some instructions and recommendations to use Instalab tool in the classroom (IO1).

O4: SAILS Safe resource for school leaders

Recent market survey of the European School Heads Association (www.esha.org) shows that schools use different strategies and have different approaches to digital education. COVID-19 school closures made it necessary for parents, teachers and school leaders to learn to navigate digital realities together. While experiences made the parties involved appreciate the potential and benefits of using digital technologies for learning, there are several areas in which school leaders need support. According to well known innovation models (Kable 2009), there is a correlation between the long term effect of innovations and the presence of a school wide strategy plan. Given that recent innovations were born out of a necessity (schools were closed) the chances are that without the presence of a school wide strategic plan, digital education will not have a lasting contribution to the pedagogic approach. The SAIL Safe resource for school leaders will use an innovative risk mitigation approach to enable school leaders to implement digital education and safeguard learners from undesired effects of social media platforms that empower them for school leadership in the digital age. We will implement a whole school planning model that enables school leaders to carefully plan the lasting implementation of digital education taking into account the long term school strategy, resistance to change, necessary resources and training needs for school leaders and teachers. The innovation of the model stands in the fact that it tackles at the same time all the needed areas where change is needed and all the processes that must be affected by change. This differentiates SAILS from many existing approaches, which focus on a single dimension of school without being able to safeguard children from the negative side effects of their online presence in general and social media platforms in particular. It will support school leaders in understanding how the innovation model for digital education works, understanding the rights of their children and safeguarding learners from threats of working online in general and social media platforms in particular/. The SAIL Safe resource for school leaders will be a guide available online for policy makers and school leaders. The guide will provide school leaders and policy makers with background information on the following areas:

– innovation models for education
– social media platform
– research evidence related to online threats
– legislation around digital childhood including learning online

The expected impact on school leaders using the resource is that they will become empowered to implement digital education effectively and safeguard the learners from the potential negative side effects from digital online presence, The resource will be based upon country-specific experiences from Spain, Greece, the Netherlands and Hungary but will be transferable to other country context.