Learning Circles in Libraries

The main goal of the project is to help adult learners to access useful educational content available online, study effectively and to improve their lifelong learning skills. To achieve this goal the partners will popularise the concept of local Learning Circles in 5 European countries. We will implement and disseminate the idea and methodology of Learning Circles, which – supported by libraries – will promote the concept of lifelong learning. Educational content used by the Circles will be based on existing, available (free or low cost) online resources.

FRSI is the project leader, and our partners are: Peer 2 Peer University (United States), Bibliothek Kőln (Germany), Fundatia Progress (Romania), Biblioteca Lucio Craveiro da Silva (Portugal) and Suomen eOppimiskeskus ry (Finland).

What are Learning Circles?

Learning circle is a self-organized or facilitated group of people who are using the chosen e-learning course in the pre-determined time period – meeting and learning in one place. This methodology was designed to alleviate many of the issues that learners face with online courses, including a lack of motivation, digital barriers, and isolation. The concept of learning circle was created by Peer 2 Peer University on the basis of cooperation with Chicago Public Library.

The Learning Circle facilitator does not have to be an expert in the subject, so with a little practice and training, anybody can facilitate. The group meets regularly once a week for 6-8 weeks. After two rounds with P2PU, the Learning Circles are now an ongoing part of Chicago Public Library’s adult programming. Given the success in Chicago, P2PU released an open source Learning Circle toolkit, comprised of software tools, facilitation guides, a list of curated courses, and promotional templates that make it easy for librarians to organize learning circles at their branch. P2PU is also working with a variety of organizations, including Kenya National Library Services, Center for Research and Interdisciplinarity (Paris, France), and more than a dozen U.S. public library systems.

Project’s data

Budget: 368.926 EUR
Funding: Erasmus+ Programme, Key Action: Cooperation for Innovation and the Exchange of Good Practices.
Duration: 36 months – September 2018 – August 2021;
Partners: Fundacja Rozwoju Społeczeństwa Informacyjnego (Poland), Peer 2 Peer University (United States), Bibliothek Kőln (Germany), Fundatia Progress (Romania), Biblioteca Lucio Craveiro da Silva (Portugal) and Suomen eOppimiskeskus ry (Finland),
Coordinators: Małgorzata Makowska, Magdalena Jackiewicz.

Activities

  • developing an educational package: a White Paper, a database of online resources, a manual, an e-learning course dedicated to adult education, aimed at supporting adult learners in lifelong learning and learning online,
  • preparation of a group of experts – the ‘learning circles’ facilitators,
  • establishing approx. 60 ‘learning circles’ in libraries,
  • dissemination of the methodology of ‘learning circles’ in libraries.

Media

IMG_20191204_104448   IMG_20191203_150845

learning_circles_FB3   IMG_20191203_092624

 

Publications

Real Opportunities for Adult Online Education. The White Paper

The main idea of this publication is to support librarians and other educators who work with adults in developing their knowledge, improving skills and enhancing attitudes that are helpful in their work. The authors also wished to inspire authorities at various levels, stakeholders, or local leaders who seek effective and innovative ways to educate people and respond to the adults’ needs.

The Real Opportunities for Adult Online Education. The White Paper report also contains general conclusions and recommendations for the countries that will run Learning Circles, as well as the ‘national’ conclusions and recommendations, i.e. those that take into account each country’s perspective.

Learn more about the publication

Real Opportunities for Adult Online Education. The White Paper – download

The White Paper excerpts in Partners’ languages:

(Finland): Hankeraportin liite: Aitoja mahdollisuuksia aikuisten verkkopohjaiseen oppimiseen – näkökulmia Suomesta – download

(Germany): Echte Chancen für die Online-Erwachsenenbildung – ein Whitepaper – download

(Poland): Edukacja online osób dorosłych – perspektywy rozwoju – download

(Portugal): Oportunidades para a educação de adultos online. White Paper – download

(Romania): Oportunitățile mediului online pentru educația adulților. Cartea albă – download

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Facilitating Learning Circles – Facilitator Handbook

The purpose of this handbook is to help facilitators understand how people acquire knowledge through self-learning, as well as how they learn from others, so that they could subsequently train facilitators in running their own Learning Circles. This manual will guide you at every step of the process. Facilitating Learning Circles – Facilitator Handbook is composed of 4 parts. Part 1  brings the concept of learning circles closer through a complete course, designed as a learning circle. Part 2: Self-Learning of this Facilitator Handbook is devoted to the concept of self-learning. Part 3: Facilitating Learning Circles explores how to best facilitate Learning Circles and finally, Part 4: Virtual Learning Circles provides practical tips on running the Learning Circles online.

Facilitating Learning Circles. Part 1. Learning About the Learning Circles – download

Facilitating Learning Circles. Part 2. Self-Learning – download

Facilitating Learning Circles. Part 3. Falilitating – download

Facilitating Learning Circles. Part 4. Virtual – download

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Facilitator Handbooks in project partners’ languages:

Finland

Part 1. – download

Part 2. – download

Part 3. – download

Part 4. – download

Germany

Part 1. – download

Part 2. – download

Part 3. – download

Part 4. – download

Poland

Part 1. – download

Part 2. – download

Part 3. – download

Part 4. – download

Portugal

Part 1. – download

Part 2. – download

Part 3. – download

Part 4. – download

Romania

Part 1. – download

Part 2. – download

Part 3. – download

Part 4. – download

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Learning circles in libraries’ Toolkit 

This is a collection of articles with accompanying videos contributed by all Learning Circles project’s partners. They present the project partners experiences of running and facilitating a Learning Circle as well as reflections on the role of libraries in supporting life-long learning.

In English – download

In Romanian – download

In Finnish – download

In German – download

In Portuguese – download

In Polish – download

Accompanying videos:

Learning Circles in Libraries Toolkit: intro (Poland’s team, in English)

I’ve facilitated 2 learning circles (Finland’s team, in English)

Olen vetänyt kaksi opintopiiriä (Finland’s team, in Finnish)

1st Learning Circle in Braga (Portugal’s team, in English)

1.º Círculo de Aprendizagem em Braga (Portugal’s team, in Portuguese)

Learning Circles: my story (Germany’s team, in English)

Meine Erfahrung mit Lernteams (Germany’s team, in German)

The Toolkit: Learning circles experience playlist

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“Are you ready for the Learning Circles?” – a quick online course

This is a site with a quick course which provides some basic information on people’s readiness to use technology, vocational interests and learning styles. The course has been prepared for all people interested in participating in the Learning Circles, as well as for librarians, educators and anyone who would like to moderate a Learning Circle.

Learn more about the course

Use the course (in English)

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The course in project partners languages:

Finland

Germany

Portugal

Poland

Romania

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Playlists of the course videos (in English with subtitles in local languages):

German

Polish

Portuguese

Romanian

English

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How to use online meetings in Learning Circles – a leaflet (by Finland’s team)

In English – download

In Finnish – download

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Facilitators Resources

More

 

CONTACT & MORE INFORMATION

Małgorzata Makowska – Coordinator:

malgorzata.makowska@frsi.org.pl

Agnieszka Koszowska:

agnieszka.koszowska@frsi.org.pl

 

 


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