Our impressions from Istanbul have only partially fulfilled our expectations. We missed direct work with children with special needs, especially on the field of lower education standards and consequently the use of their didactic-methodical approaches and strategies.
In the Metin Sabath cerebral palsy training and educational centre we saw the use of technology and technological equipment of classrooms, and also some different gadgets and other modern technologies in the teaching process.
They were very hospitable. Soon we learned that they carefully protected their students - their basic rights and personal data. Consequently, we expected several examples of good practise in the field of lower education standards, some of us observed work in a special program where basic areas such as caring for themselves, feeding and developing basic motor skills were covered. We found out that our approach is either the same or perhaps better on some educational areas. We too encourage our students to use alternative communication using tablets and adapted computer programs.
When visiting some other institutions, we realized that when educating children, they follow their individual needs and skills. It impressed us that the children have the opportunity to spend free time between classes listening to music, watching TV and attending school cinema, which is also one of the best technological achievements and we would gladly have it in our school.
We also met the head of the ministry of Education who listened with interest how people with special needs are educated in each country. A representative of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs emphasized that families with children, who have intellectual disabilities, are provided with free bus services, free entries in cultural institutions, cinemas, …
A visit to the restaurant in Tebessit made a strong impression on us as employees are young people with Down's syndrome. Through encouragement of their mentors, they are actively involved in the work. We were nicely served.
Our students, who participated in the program, were impressed by the size of the city, the subway, the friendliness and hospitality. They made new friends from Poland, and enjoyed getting familiar with new technological tools and technology on general.
Tanja, Aleksandra, Vesna, Marija, Niki and Martin.