04 October 2021

Training Course: Planning for the future, 26.06.2021-04.07.2021, Kolin, Czech Republic

Between 26th of June and 4th of July 2021, our participants were part of an Erasmus+ KA1 Training Course called "Planning for the Future" in Kolin, Czech Republic. Here, together with participants from other countries (Estonia, Germany, Spain, Croatia, Poland), they tackled some of the most important topics nowadays: media literacy, critical thinking, and financial literacy. Organizers provided professionals, field experts, that made all these topics simple and comprehensible, keeping them relevant and consistent at the same time. Below their impressions and thoughts.

The training course was spread in multiple sessions and workshops, which were meant to ease the lessons and make them more entertaining through non- formal education. We had the opportunity to debate (which was, in our opinion, one of the most efficient methods of teaching and developing critical thinking), recognize what is fake news, what is a social construct and what hidden biases and assumptions we all make when facing decision-making situations.

The most interesting part was recognizing motivated reasoning and confirmation bias (the way we tend to look for and motivate our personal beliefs). We learned about easy ways of manipulating the masses by social media, and how to approach conspiracies and people who believe in them by simulating a debate in this opposite situation.

The financial literacy topic started out in the fourth day which implied discussions upon certain decision-making tools and planning fallacy. It continued with an eye-opening financial game, a simulation of real life. A way to learn how to manage our money, see goals, predict the unexpected day-by-day, and briefly introduce stocks. The game not just made us realize how important it is to manage our money correctly, how to invest or prepare for the future, but also how to communicate effectively with our partners. It ended up with a “civil engineering” project, expanding our critical thinking and exploiting the fear of failing. It was an effective way of teaching us not to fear making mistakes and trying to be more open-minded to errors and variables which can appear.

We had a session about Erasmus+ and ECS programmes, learning about YouthPass certificates and how we could use the programme activities in our future personal development.

Useful resources, created as a result of the training course, are available here: Financial Statement Model, Critical Thinking, Financial Literacy.