Have you ever heard of non-formal education? But in Moldova? If your answer is “no” or even if “yes”, then you should definitely take a look at this interview with Aina Idrisova – facilitator, social entrepreneur, science popularization – who will dive you into the topic.
- If there was one quote to describe your professional career, which one would you choose?
“Do not wait for somebody or something to rescue you – a person or a machine or a library. Create something that can rescue the world on your own!”
- I know that you’re a founder of the hub/center for the teens and children (“House of Evolution”). Could you tell me about this project, what it provides, its mission and vision?
“The House Of Evolution” is a space created by people for people, by my team and me. It is a center of non-formal education that doesn’t have an address, but a concrete vision of collaboration among children themselves, children and parents, learners and facilitators.
We have an individual working concept to each of the age range. Those include:
- “soft skills” development among children;
- career orientation in digital era for teenagers;
- professional community creation and support for teachers and specialists in the field.
As a leader, I attempt to focus on all 3 concepts so as to provide non-formal education and a unique opportunity in Moldova. The team strives toward promoting social activism, different approaches toward teaching and learning, and personal development.
- Each project is about people, about their own life story. What is your one that might have become the fundamental one thus we see your project to be real?
“…making it more flexible and “spacious” for meeting the personal needs of each child…”
My professional “story” began after I had been invited to work as a teacher of first-graders in a public school. I remember my emotions and enthusiastic children’s desire to find the right answer, how curious they were. However, there is no space for self-reflection and creativity neither for students not for me as a teacher. It is different. It asks for a strict discipline for both of the sides involved in a learning process. It is easier when children do and sit in a way that were told. Thus, the understanding that I want to change the system, making it more flexible and “spacious” for meeting the personal needs of each child as an individual, came to me a year after. I announced my first program in “The House of Evolution”.
- Focusing on your personal experience working as a teacher, what problems does our educational system have?
First that comes to my mind, is working too much on “filling in the forms”. We must try to get rid of this method at least partially, because teachers just have no time to create an interactive class. Secondly, our school system MUST meet PERSONAL NEEDS of EACH child that is not currently possible because of the class sizes. Finally, there has to be provided an assistance. A teacher is a human being, too. He or she is not a robot, which works 24\7. So, a specialist really needs somebody to collaborate, so as not to put all duties only on one shoulder.
There will not be a significant effectiveness, unless there is no a tandem, that strives for “healthy” atmosphere in a classroom, where every child and teacher feels appreciated, respected and involved!
- Every problem always its solutions. Which idea do you like the most when it comes to solving those problems?
I would like to have conscious people, who understand that there is no “a single game” – somebody works, but others stay. For example, tandem “teacher+parent= effective collaboration”. All of us would benefit, if teachers do not have too much of “an official part” and were open-minded and flexible when talking about changes and “new ways”. Also, I would recommend students to attempt to have a life “outside the school”, not being over focused on marks, tests, quizzes, having a correct attitude toward it.
- Getting ready to the interview, it seemed to me that your work at school was one of the most fundamental steps that resulted into creating a new field in Moldova – non-formal education. Could you share with me and our readers , what opportunities does your center provide for young people?
- Under 14: educational programs during the summer break (5-7 days), “game evenings” and scientific projects for young explorers (2-in-1);
- 14-18: career-oriented programs, telegram channel https://t.me/domevolutiiTEENs, where you can find the latest news and opportunities, “game evenings” as well.
- How can those, who have got interested reach you out (contact)?
I’m already waiting forward to get you know! Feel free! I am ready to have consultations, talks, and colloborations. Do not keep silence or be ashamed! That is something I profoundly enjoy!
- Finish your interview with an inspirational and encouraging message.
You will not be able to select a place or hobby or community, unless you know about them! “Knock into a door”, show yourself to the world and I am sure the world will open “its doors” to you!
Got interested? Want more? If so, stay tuned to the Youth.md social media pages where there are tons of useful information for you to find yourself. Satisfy your curiosity and show us your potential! Be the change!