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Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

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Contents

Czech-Republic:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Czech-Republic:Historical Development

Czech-Republic:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Czech-Republic:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Czech-Republic:Political and Economic Situation

Czech-Republic:Organisation and Governance

Czech-Republic:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Czech-Republic:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Czech-Republic:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Private Education

Czech-Republic:National Qualifications Framework

Czech-Republic:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Czech-Republic:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Czech-Republic:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Czech-Republic:Funding in Education

Czech-Republic:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Czech-Republic:Higher Education Funding

Czech-Republic:Adult Education and Training Funding

Czech-Republic:Early Childhood Education and Care

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Czech-Republic:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Upper Secondary Education

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Upper Secondary Education

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Upper Secondary Education

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Conservatoires (Arts Education)

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Conservatoires (Arts Education)

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Conservatoires (Arts Education)

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Follow-up and Shortened Study

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Follow-up and Shortened Study

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Follow-up and Shortened Study

Czech-Republic:Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Czech-Republic:First Cycle Programmes

Czech-Republic:Bachelor

Czech-Republic:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Second Cycle Programmes

Czech-Republic:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Czech-Republic:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Czech-Republic:Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Distribution of Responsibilities

Czech-Republic:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Czech-Republic:Main Providers

Czech-Republic:Main Types of Provision

Czech-Republic:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Czech-Republic:Teachers and Education Staff

Czech-Republic:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Management and Other Education Staff

Czech-Republic:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Czech-Republic:Management Staff for Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Educational Support and Guidance

Czech-Republic:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Czech-Republic:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Czech-Republic:Mobility and Internationalisation

Czech-Republic:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Mobility in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Czech-Republic:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in School Education

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Czech-Republic:European Perspective

Czech-Republic:Legislation

Czech-Republic:Institutions

Czech-Republic:Bibliography

Czech-Republic:Glossary

Steering Documents and Types of Activities

The curricular documents are developed on two levels in the Czech Republic – the national and the school ones. The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports published the Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education (FEP PpE) in 2004 that was prepared by the Research Institute of Education (which became a part of the National Institute for Education in 2012). On the basis of the FEP PpE, individual nursery schools (mateřské školy) prepare their school education programmes.


The Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education

The FEP PpE is a basic curricular document which stipulates the binding framework for education in nursery schools (mateřské školy), including nursery schools with a special needs programme, and in preparatory classes (přípravné třídy) of basic schools for socially disadvantaged children (for more information, see the part Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education in the Chapter 12 on Educational Support and Guidance).


Content of the FEP PpE:

  • a description of features of pre-primary education, methods and forms of work and a description of general objectives of pre-primary education and key competencies to be developed;
  • a framework content of pre-primary education in five areas;
  • conditions of pre-primary education (material conditions, daily regime, psychosocial conditions, management of a nursery school, personnel and educational conditions as well as conditions for and parent participation);
  • guidelines for educating children with special educational needs and exceptionally gifted children;
  • requirements for the educational assessment of children and self-evaluation of a nursery school;
  • principles and recommendations for creating a SEP;
  • duties of a pre-primary teacher.


Tasks of Pre-primary Education:

  • to complement family education;
  • to provide children with an environment full of stimuli for their active development and learning;
  • to meaningfully enrich children's daily programme;
  • to facilitate life and education pathways to children;
  • to create conditions for continuation in education in such a way that at all times, individual development possibilities of children will be supported at the maximum;
  • to fulfil diagnostic tasks, especially in relation to children with special educational needs.


Framework Objectives (Intentions)

Pre-primary education according to the FEP PpE is focused on the following three framework objectives (intentions):

  • development of children, their learning and cognition;
  • acquisition of fundamental social values, on which society is based;
  • acquisition of personal independence and the ability to act as an independent personality influencing his/her surroundings;


Key Competencies

If the objectives are fulfilled, they lead to the development of key competencies basics:

  • learning competencies;
  • problem solving competencies;
  • communication competencies;
  • social and personal competencies;
  • activity based and civic competencies.


Educational Areas

In the FEP PpE, the educational content is divided into five educational areas:

  • biological (The child and his/her body);
  • psychological (The child and his/her psyche: Language and speech, Cognitive abilities and functions, imagination and fantasy, thought operations and Self-concept, emotions and will);
  • interpersonal (The child and the others);
  • socio-cultural (The child and society);
  • environmental (The child and the world).


Structure of each Area:

  • fundamental characteristics and educational intentions;
  • partial educational objectives;
  • educational offers (i.e. activities, or opportunities which should be offered and ensured in a particular area);
  • expected outputs (competencies) which can be generally considered attainable at the pre-primary level;
  • risks which disturb the educational process and may endanger its intentions.


Concrete Expected Outputs

A supplement of FEP PpE Concrete Expected Outputs elaborates on and specifies individual expected outputs in the framework of educational areas in the FEP PpE. These are described on an optimal level and can be regarded desirable for children at the end of their pre-primary period.


Function of the FEP PpE

The content of pre-primary education constitutes the main means of education of a child in a nursery school. The FEP PpE is developed in such a way so that it fulfils pre-primary education objectives. In the FEP PpE, the educational content is formulated in the form of educational offers and expected outputs only generally, in a framework. It is important to keep in mind that the process of children's maturing is uneven and not all children are able to reach all parameters, but they can get closer to them. The basic task of each pedagogue is to support the individual development possibilities of each child at maximum and to enable him/her to reach the optimal attainable level of personality development at the time of leaving a nursery school.


Legislation and Bibliography:

Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education



School Education Programmes

Creation of the School Education Programme

The school education programme (SEP) is a document, according to which education in a particular nursery school (mateřská škola) is realised. It enables the provision of education on the basis of real school conditions, according to the needs and interests of pupils, according to parents' demand and conceptual aims of the organising body. A nursery school creates a SEP in compliance with generally valid legal regulations and the Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education (FEP PpE). The SEP is published by a school head after thorough discussions with the teacher's council, and makes it public on a publicly accessible place. The school head is obliged to discuss the content of the SEP with the organising body.


Content of the SEP

  • Identification information about the school.
  • General school characteristics – size of the school, number of classes, location, character of the building and the surroundings, possibly history of the school etc…
  • Conditions for education – material equipment, daily regime, psycho-social conditions, operation course and management of the nursery school, staffing and cooperation with parents, etc…
  • Organisation of education – setting of the school and individual classrooms etc…
  • Characteristics of the education programme – introduction of the programme, educational objectives and aims of the school, exercised approaches, working forms and methods, profile of the school etc…
  • Educational content – the particular educational offer laid out into self-contained parts – so-called integrated blocks. The blocks can be common for the whole school, or they can differ in the framework of individual classes. It is necessary to characterise the main (pedagogical) objectives of the blocks and to outline their contents (areas of activities or basic expected outputs) so that it is obvious how they can further be worked with. The content of the blocks can be developed only generally in school education programmes. The blocks are further specified on the class level.
  • Evaluation system – system of school evaluation (objective means, schedule, responsibilities, possibly other regulations).


Class Education Programme

The SEP should serve as the common basis for pedagogical work in the framework of individual classes. On its grounds and in compliance with it, a teacher should prepare his/her plan – the class education programme in such a way the content corresponds to the age, abilities, interests and needs of children of  a particular class and that the form corresponds to the working style of the teacher. Teachers usually develop them continuously and occasionally optimise or adjust them.


Methodological Support

As a support for the development of the SEP and CEP the Manual for the Development of School (Class) Educational Programme of Pre-primary School and other materials were issued. Their list is included in the section on Teaching Methods and Materials.


Findings of the Czech School Inspectorate

According to the findings of the Czech School Inspectorate of 2011/12, teachers organised movement activities most frequently (Child and his/her body), aesthetic and art activities as well as activities supporting creativity. Less traceable were activities supporting basic skills for the development of mathematical, reading and natural science literacy. The acquisition of skills preceding reading and writing is a key ability for future success in education. The Czech School Inspectorate keeps warning of a low percentage of activities that support mathematical literacy and suggest introducing a new, separate part of the FEP PpE for support of basic mathematical skills.


Legislation and Bibliography:

Annual Report of the Czech School Inspectorate for 2011/12

Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education

Manual for the Development of School (Class) Educational Programme of Pre-primary School



Other documents and programmes

Decree on Pre-Primary Education

According to the Decree on Pre-Primary Education, a nursery school (mateřská škola) can organise recovery stays of children in a health-friendly environment without interruption of education, school trips and other events connected to educational activities of the school. Schools often offer after-school activities such as music or visual art studios, pre-swimming education or foreign language education.

The decree further stipulates that a nursery school cooperates with legal guardians of children and other legal entities and natural persons with the aim to support and to organise activities in favour of children's development  and to deepen the educational impact of a nursery school, a family and society. One of the sections of the FEP PpE is devoted to cooperation with parents: it should be realised on the basis of partnership and it is satisfactory in the case parents have the possibility to participate in various events in a nursery school, they are informed about activities in a nursery school, about the progress of their children and they are offered counselling services.


Decalogue for Parents of Pre-school Children

Alongside this document, the Ministry of Education also issued the Decalogue for Parents of Pre-school Children. Basic pieces of information are offered to parents of these children on matters the child should manage before entering the basic school. An overview of basic skills links and unifies the goals of a family and a school. Therefore, the cooperation of the family and the school, which participates on a child’s education, is very important.


Support of Logopedics Prevention in Pre-primary Education

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports declared the development programme Support of Logopedics Prevention in Pre-primary Education in 2014 and reserved CZK 10 million (EUR 365 thousands; EUR/CZK 27.407 – 26 May 2015) for it. Thus, the Ministry reacts to the continual decrease of the speech abilities level of pre-school age children which leads to the increasing number of compulsory schooling deferrals due to children's speech impediment.


Legislation and Bibliography:

Decalogue for Parents of Pre-school Children

Decree on Pre-Primary Education



Language Education

Approach to Language Education in Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education

Language education is not compulsory on the level of pre-primary education. In relation to foreign languages, the Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education (FEP PpE) presupposes that for a child of a pre-school age, communicative competence can be achieved on such a level that a child is aware of the fact that people communicate through different languages (other than the mother tongue); that it is possible to learn them and that a child has elementary means of foreign language acquisition.


Approach to Language Education in School Education Programmes

The school education programme (SEP) enables individual schools to make their profile on the basis of the consideration of real possibilities (among teacher qualification, international contacts, cooperation with other subjects). Specifically foreign language education creates a frequent profile of nursery schools (mateřské školy). The three following approaches are exercised:

  1. Language awareness, named as language propaedeutic, is one of them. It aims to build the basics of future (and desirable) multilingualism of children and to give them the opportunity to realise the existence of other languages, their similarities and differences, including cultural diversity. Education is focused on the development of a relation to a foreign language and is not bound to the acquisition of a particular language.
  2. Complete integration of multilingual education of one particular language into SEP is the second approach; when a foreign language is one of the tools in which the objectives defined in the FEP PpE are acquired.
  3. The offer of a foreign language as an extracurricular activity, hence beyond the framework of the SEP, is the third possibility used by schools.

No binding standards, objectives, evaluation criteria or aim levels for individual stages of language education in a pre-school age are defined. Materials that were or are developed in order to support language education are not compulsory.


Findings of the Czech School Inspectorate

In the school year 2012/13 57.5 % of asked nursery schools offered English learning. In 2.3 % of nursery schools children were familiarized with other foreign language. In the instruction a form of paid language circles run by external teachers prevailed (31.6 % of nursery schools). In 11.3 % of nursery schools children attained the circle free of charge. In 17.5 % of nursery schools the English language became a part of school education programme and was taught by permanent teachers of the school.


Legislation and Bibliography:

Annual Report of the Czech School Inspectorate for 2012/13

Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education



Teaching Methods and Materials

Teaching Methods according to the Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education

Pre-primary education should be consistently linked to the different needs and abilities of individual children, including specific educational needs. This educational concept makes it possible to educate children in one class regardless of their different abilities and learning potential.

Education should be realised on the basis of integrated blocks which do not separate educational areas or components but offer educational content to a child within real-life context. Pre-primary education should use situational learning (i.e. using situations to demonstrate life situations) and spontaneous social learning (the principle of natural imitation). Spontaneous and directed activities should be interlinked and balanced.

Suitable methods and forms of work are: learning by experience, cooperation through play and children´s activities, which are based on direct experience, support children's curiosity and their need to discover and stimulate a child's joy of learning, their interest in learning new things, gaining new experiences and mastering other skills. Learning should take the form of a play, where children are engaged according to their interests and personal choices.

A teacher should guide children on their path to knowledge, stimulate their active interest and their desire to look around themselves, to listen and to discover.


Forms and Methods of Education according to the Findings of the Czech School Inspectorate

According to the findings of the Annual Report of the Czech School Inspectorate (2013/14) the frontal teaching prevailed in the educational process (92.8 %). Independent work of children was found in 60.4 %, group teaching in 54.5 % of inspections. The Czech School Inspectorate could see the use of skill-practical methods in 75.8 % of inspections, demonstration (experimenting) in 45.2 % and considered work with text in 34.7 % of inspections. In attended classes 74.3 % of children used technical toys and 91.3 % were interested in books. In 93.2 % of nursery schools spontaneous social learning was supported, cooperative learning was used less – 68 %.


Teaching Materials

To help teachers some documents were created and published by the Research Institute of Education:

  • The Handbook for Creation of School (Class) Education Programmes for Nursery Schools (2005)
  • Methodology for support of individualisation in education in nursery schools
  • Guidelines for a class education programme
  • Class Register project (project Třídní kniha)
  • Guidelines for methodology of English instruction in nursery schools
  • Notes on the creation of a school education programme for preparatory classes (přípravné třídy)
  • Particularities of development of school educational programmes for preparatory classes of basic schools (základní školy)
  • Self-evaluation of a nursery school

The above mentioned as well as other methodical materials can be found on the website of the Metodický portál.


Legislation and Bibliography:

Annual Report of the Czech School Inspectorate for 2013/2014

A Manual for the Development of School (Class) Educational Programme of Pre-primary School

Framework Education Programme for Pre-primary Education

Guidelines for a Class Educational Programme

Guidelines for Methodology of English Instruction in Nursery Schools

Self-evaluation of a Nursery School

Methodology for Support of Individualisation in Education in Nursery Schools

Notes on the Creation of a School Education Programme for Preparatory Classes (přípravné třídy)

Particularities of Development of School Educational Programmes for Preparatory Classes of Basic Schools (základní škoy)