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JANUARY 2014
06.01.2014

Guidelines for independent study of Estonian now complete
Compilations for advanced Estonian studies published

The website kutsekeel.ee is well-known to 63 per cent of teachers

Additional training for the Sunday schools of ethnic minorities to begin in January

The youth essay competition dealt with social activism

7900 pupils participated in the citizen’s day online quiz



Guidelines for independent study of Estonian now complete

Guidelines for independent language studies and retaining language skills, commissioned by the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA), have been compiled to help adults maintain their language skills after they have successfully completed language courses.

“The guidelines were compiled by the Institute of Estonian Language and Culture of the Tallinn University, and their aim is to support adult language learners in retaining the Estonian skills they acquired in language courses and continuing their studies independently,” the head of MISA’s Lifelong Learning Unit, Jana Tondi, said.

“The guidelines contain many practical ideas and recommendations for planning language studies, creating socialising opportunities and motivating oneself to continue with language studies outside of the formal Estonian lessons,” Tondi said.

The learning aids have been translated from Estonian into Russian and English and are available to language learners and teachers for free both electronically on the foundation’s website http://www.meis.ee/raamatukogu as well as in print form, available for order from MISA. 

The editor of the guidelines, Helena Metslang, has paid particular attention to the analysis of the learner’s needs, maintaining and bolstering the wish to learn and finding interesting opportunities for using the language. “Independent language studies are different from attending language classes and have many advantages. The students can determine the pace of their studies and learn according to their specific needs, developing both their skills and adaptability as well as their independence and responsibility for the results,” Metslang said.

The guidelines for retaining language skills was completed with the support of the European Social Fund within the framework of the activity ‘Public sector language studies’, which is part of the  ‘Language Learning Development 2011-2013’ programme of the measure ‘Language Learning Development’ in the European Social Fund Human Resources Development Operational Plan’s priority axis ‘Lifelong Learning’.

For additional information, please contact: Tea Kotkas, co-ordinator of the Lifelong Learning Unit, phone 659 9061, e-mail tea.kotkas@meis.ee        


Compilations for advanced Estonian studies published

The compilation ‘Exercises on Estonian Vocabulary and Semantics’, commissioned by the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA), was compiled for intermediate and advanced students of the Estonian language.

“The compilation contains exercises for improving skills for derivation and employment of words, and it is meant, in particular, for university students who study Estonian as a foreign language, but is also suitable for foreign language schools and language courses. The publication includes exercises with a varying degree of difficulty for both intermediate and advanced level,” the author of the compilation Sirje Rammo, a lecturer of Estonian as a foreign language at the University of Tartu, said of the compilation.

The print run of the compilation by the University of Tartu is 500 copies, which will be sent out to county libraries, central libraries, universities, vocational schools, professional associations, counselling centres of the language immersion programme, and institutions of informal education. The compilation is available to download for free at MISA’s website and in the portal kutsekeel.ee.

The compilation of exercises on Estonian vocabulary and semantics was put together as a supplement to the Semantika (Semantics) textbook by Silvi Tenjes, published by the University of Tartu Press in 2011 with the support of the language learning development programme of the European Social Fund.

In addition, the term database ‘I as a Student Will Supplement My Specialised Language’ for Estonian-Russian social work was completed; it is based on an additional Estonian language course held by MISA for students of social work. The terminological database was compiled by the Pedagogical College of the Tallinn University where the students, whose first language is not Estonian, took a course on the essential Estonian terms in the field of social work and drew up a practical database of terms with Russian equivalents.

The social work terminology database is available at the MISA’s website and the online portal kutsekeel.ee. The compilation was put together by lecturer Virve Mäemets from the Pedagogical College of Tallinn University.
Both publications were published within the framework of the activity ‘Additional language studies for students at higher education level’, part of the programme ‘Language Learning Development 2011-2013‘ of the European Social Fund.

For additional information, please contact: Liilika Raudhein, co-ordinator of MISA’s Lifelong Learning Unit, phone 659 9841, e-mail liilika.raudhein@meis.ee


The website kutsekeel.ee is well-known to 63 per cent of teachers

According to the study of the market research company Turu-uuringute AS, 63 per cent of teachers are familiar with the website www.kutsekeel.ee. The portal contains teaching materials and links to e-courses, mediates news and encourages the founding and functioning of a teachers’ network. The target group of the website are teachers and students of vocational schools, but also foreign language teachers, students, institutions of higher education, employers, professional associations and others.

According to the survey commissioned by the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA), compared to the previous survey carried out in 2011 the prominence of the website has increased by 13 per cent. The number of visits has also increased and the keenest users of the website are teachers whose work experience exceeds the average level.

“246 teachers of vocational schools took part in the survey and it focused on how widely the website is used within the main target group - that is, the teachers of vocational schools. With the support of the European Social Fund, the website has been running since 2008, and we wanted to find out how actively the teachers are using the website that is intended to aid them in their work,” Jana Tondi, the head of MISA’s Lifelong Learning Unit, commented.

“There are several reasons why some teachers are not using the website in their work. For example, eight per cent of them lack the training to carry out online tuition and 41 per cent admitted that they cannot really say why they’re not using the additional teaching tools. A certain portion of teachers cannot find suitable materials from the kutsekeel.ee portal, but we are constantly updating the website and hope to make it more comprehensive in time,” Tondi said. She encouraged teachers to be more active in using free materials in their work and invited them to let MISA know which materials they would like to see in the portal in the future.

The most widely used section of the kutsekeel.ee environment continues to be learning materials, which are used by 89 per cent of people surveyed. The portal is used by 38 per cent of teachers for conducting language lessons and finding materials on methods. Compared to the previous survey, the use of the Russian version of the website has increased.

The accessibility of materials has met the approval of 85 per cent respondents. According to the people surveyed, the structure of the website is clear (83 per cent).

The survey was carried out with the support of the programme ‘Language Learning Development 2011-2013‘ of the European Social Fund.

For additional information, please contact: Marje Sarapuu, co-ordinator of MISA’s Lifelong Learning Unit, phone 659 9068, e-mail marje.sarapuu@meis.ee


Additional training for the Sunday schools of ethnic minorities to begin in January

In late January, the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA) will help to organise additional training for 20 teachers of Sunday schools of ethnic minorities, with the aim of improving the pedagogical abilities of teachers.

“At the moment, there are teachers in Sunday schools who have had both pedagogical as well as linguistic training, but the teachers of several Sunday schools are merely fluent in the language and they lack the education necessary for teaching, pedagogical preparation and skills. They do have the desire to preserve and support their culture, which is why we decided to hold a 120-hour training programme to give teachers more confidence and skills in making their lessons more exciting,” Kristina Pirgop, co-ordinator of MISA’s Multicultural Education Unit, explained.

“The Estonian state has set a goal to ensure that the ethnic minorities living in Estonia can preserve their distinct languages and cultures, mostly by organising education and social activities in their first language. Estonians have a good idea of the essence of national heritage societies, especially those who know about the life of expatriate Estonians who preserve and promote Estonian culture all over the world. There are representatives of many nationalities living in Estonia and more than 30 Sunday schools of ethnic minorities have registered in the Estonian educational information system, introducing their culture and history and teaching their language and culture to children,” Pirgop commented.

The additional training will focus on teaching methods, didactics of language learning, the social and cultural competence of the teacher, integrating cultural differences, the basics of drama pedagogy and the articulation and self-expression. Additionally, the training cycle offers new knowledge on working on adapting and finding teaching materials and outlines the experience of other countries in the language and cultural studies of ethnic minorities.

The training is organised by Sola Integra OÜ and the activities are funded by the state via the Ministry of Education and Research within the ‘Estonian Integration Strategy 2008-2013’.

For additional information, please contact: Kristina Pirgop, co-ordinator of MISA’s Multicultural Education Unit, phone 659 9024, e-mail kristina.pirgop@meis.ee


The youth essay competition dealt with social activism

The essay competition on being a citizen, held already for the third year, was dominated by the students of Võru Kesklinna Kool and Saku Gümnaasium.

In the citizen’s day essay competition ‘What Does Active Participation in the Society Mean to Me as a Citizen?’ organised by the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA) students of Saku Gümnaasium were the most successful, reaching five prize-winning positions and the students of Võru Kesklinna Kool took home four prizes. Saku Gümnaasium was also successful at the essay competition last year, when the students of the school won six prizes out of eight.

Traditionally, an awards ceremony is held for the top participants of the citizen’s day essay competition and online quiz, and this year, it will take place on 23 January at Mustpeade Maja.

MISA holds the essay competition in co-operation with the Ministry of Education and Research and over three years, nearly 400 students have expressed their thoughts on being a citizen.

Competition for general education schools, forms 7-9:

1st place Elisabeth Burga – Toila Gümnaasium, 9th form
2nd place (at the suggestion of the jury, three second places were awarded)
1) Olivia-Stella Salm – Saku Gümnaasium, 9th form
2) Laura Kall – Võru Kesklinna Kool, 9th form
3) Alisija Vassermann – Võru Kesklinna Kool, 8th form
3rd place
1) Ode Maria Punamäe – Võru Kesklinna Kool, 9th form
2) Susanne Rosenberg – Saku Gümnaasium, 9th form
3) Robert Rästa – Võru Kesklinna Kool, 9th form

A special prize for good journalistic style was given to the 9th form student of Pärnu Vanalinna Põhikool Elin Hein.

Competition for general education schools, forms 9-12 and vocational schools:

1st place Janne Tikko – Kilingi-Nõmme Gümnaasium, 12th form
2nd place Jan Zabrodin – Tallinna Pae Gümnaasium, 12th form
(at the suggestion of the jury, a prize for second place was not awarded)
3rd place
1) Gregor Sibold – Saku Gümnaasium, 11th form
2) Maarja Vinkel – Rakvere Eragümnaasium, 12th form
3) Merike-Ethel Triik – Saku Gümnaasiumi 11th form

Special prizes were awarded to 11th form student of Saku Gümnaasium Hanna-Rooda Pedak and the 12th form student of Tallinna Pae Gümnaasium Anton Borissov.
For additional information, please contact: Toivo Sikk, co-ordinator of MISA’s Multicultural Education Unit, phone 659 9850, e-mail toivo.sikk@meis.ee


7900 pupils participated in the citizen’s day online quiz

For the 11th consecutive year, the Integration and Migration Foundation Our People (MISA) organised an online quiz for young people on citizen’s day, and this year, more than 7,900 school students took part. Of the total number of participants, 35.64 per cent came from Russian schools and 65.36 came from schools with Estonian as the language of instruction.

“The quiz was meant for all students in forms 7-12 in general education schools and vocational schools, and for the first time, the students of forms 5 and 6 were also allowed to participate; special questions were drawn up for them and also translated into Russian,” Toivo Sikk, the co-ordinator of MISA’s Multicultural Education Unit commented. The quiz questions were compiled by older students.

2,033 pupils took the citizen’s day quiz for forms 5 and 6. 1,329 pupils came from Estonian schools and 704 pupils came from Russian schools. There were participants from 82 schools: Saku Gümnaasium had the largest representation (155 participants), followed by Tallinna Rahumäe Põhikool (139 participants), Kohtla-Järve Tammiku Põhikool (114 participants) and Tallinna Kesklinna Vene Gümnaasium (102 participants).

“The students of forms 7-12 from general education schools and vocational schools participated actively and successfully in the quiz this year - more than 5,800 students took part, which is 600 more than a year ago,” Sikk noted with joy. According to Sikk, over the past 11 years, about 43,000 students have tested their knowledge in the online quiz.

The aim of the citizen’s day quiz is to increase the knowledge of people living in Estonia about the constitutional institutions, human and citizens’ rights, liberties and duties in the Republic of Estonia.

Forms 5-6, general education schools, Estonian as language of instruction (maximum possible score- 50 points):

1) Rasmus Trei, Tallinna Rahumäe Põhikool, 5th grade - 36 points
2) Markus Sutt, Pärnu Kuninga Tänava Põhikool, 6th grade - 36 points
3) Märt Tammearu, Pärnu Kuninga Tänava Põhikool, 6th grade - 36 points
4) Keneli Pohlak, Väike-Maarja Gümnaasium, 6th grade - 36 points

Forms 5-6, general education schools, Russian as language of instruction (maximum possible score- 50 points):

1) Darja Petrova, Haabersti Vene Gümnaasium, 6th grade - 35 points
2) Vlad Virtonen, Sillamäe Vanalinna Kool, 6th grade - 35 points
3) Anastasija Tistsenko, Haabersti Vene Gümnaasium, 6th grade - 35 points
4) Taisia Krupenko, Haabersti Vene Gümnaasium, 6th grade - 35 points
5) Georgi Talisainen, Haabersti Vene Gümnaasium, 6th grade - 35 points

Forms 7-9, general education schools, Estonian as language of instruction:

1) Kenneth Koort, Pärnu Vanalinna Põhikool, 7th grade - 60 points
2) Grete Pall, Ülenurme Gümnaasium, 9th grade - 60 points
3) Liisbet Rannast, Ülenurma Gümnaasium, 9th grade - 60 points
4) Karl Renno, Ülenurme Gümnaasium, 9th grade - 60 points

Forms 7-9, general education schools, Russian as language of instruction:

1) Aivar Kamal, Tallinna Mustamäe Humanitaargümnaasium, 8th grade - 64 points
2) Nikolai Martsuk, Kohtla-Järve Tammiku Põhikool, 9th grade - 56 points
3) Olga Rõžkova,Tallinna Kesklinna Vene Gümnaasium, 9th grade - 54 points

Forms 10-12, general education schools, Estonian as language of instruction:

1) Hele-Andra Kuulmets, Tartu Kommertsgümnaasium, 12th grade - 62 points
2) Andreas Kraus, Hugo Treffneri Gümnaasium, 11th grade - 61 points
3) Kadri Kriisk, Tartu Jaan Poska Gümnaasium, 12th grade - 61 points
4) Brenda Uga, Tallinna Arte Gümnaasium, 12th grade - 61 points

Forms 10-12, general education schools, Russian as language of instruction:

1) Eric Raudenja, Tallinna Kesklinna Vene Gümnaasium, 12th grade - 60 points
2) Nika Karabelskaja, Tallinna Kesklinna Vene Gümnaasium, 10th grade - 59 points
3) Jana Dudareva, Tallinna Kesklinna Vene Gümnaasium, 12th grade - 58 points

The top three of vocational schools:

1) Heleri Kuris, Tallinna Polütehnikum - 55 points
2) Aleksei Vinogradov, Tallinna Majanduskool - 55 points
3) Maksim Krestnikov, Tallinna Polütehnikum - 54 points

The organising of the online quiz was financed by the Ministry of Education and Research within the ‘Estonian Integration Strategy 2008-2013’.

For additional information, please contact: Toivo Sikk, co-ordinator of MISA’s Multicultural Education Unit, phone 659 9850, e-mail toivo.sikk@meis.ee