EIPTE – or Entrepreneurship in Initial Primary Teacher Education – is a strategic partnership between the pre-Primary and Primary teacher training of AP University College and seven other European colleges in six different countries. EIPTE is an innovative Erasmus+ project aiming to integrate entrepreneurship into European Primary Education on a European level. The collaboration starts in September 2017 and ends in august 2020.
Incorporating entrepreneurship in Primary Education of European colleges, that is the main objective of EIPTE. “Entrepreneurship is a lot broader than solely within it’s economic context. With this project we want to stimulate the entrepreneurial mindset of teachers and pupils like development of personality, creativity, problem-solving attitudes,…That’s how we educate Edupreneurs”, explains Jo van den Hauwe, Head of the department Pre-primary and Primary Education of AP University College. Edupreneurs are teachers who can bend opportunities and ideas into financial, cultural or social value. They can pass these qualities onto their pupils through an entrepreneurial education context.
It was no coincidence AP University college was asked to join this international cooperation. “From our experience and expertise with international and creative programs like SPACE (Strategic Partnership: Agents of Change and Education) and the ‘yearly international STEAM Week’ (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) we were encouraged to engage in this new Erasmus+ project. The application got accepted by the German National Agency”, says Geert. “The following three years we can look forward to a fruitful and enriching pan-European cooperation wherein every partner can integrate their own expertise.”
To implement entrepreneurship effectively into Primary Education, EIPTE will design and assemble a toolbox for European colleges: a multi-lingual and multi-employable collection of tools, methods, research and education techniques that allow primary teachers to create a class and school environment that powers entrepreneurship.
The toolbox is a welcome and necessary instrument for primary education in Europe. Though a lot of information can be found to educate entrepreneurship to kids, only three European countries - Denmark, Estonia and Lithuania – anchored entrepreneurship into the end terms of primary education training and expect their teachers to master the skill when they step into the field. Through the pan-European collaboration EIPTE will try to broaden this education practice within European teacher training courses.
Thanks to European support for EIPTE ten students and two teachers of pre-primary and primary education training can take part in interesting national and international learning activities every year. That way EIPTE contributes to the structural enforcement of intercultural competences of our future teachers.