Romani children and poverty, Croatia (2016)

Romani children and poverty, Croatia (2016)

In this publication, REYN Croatia shows how poverty affects Romani children and how it generates a vicious circle that is hard to break. Poverty leads to socio-emotional and cognitive disadvantages, low school attendance, school drop out, all that leads to unemployment and, again, poverty. Quality education can break this cycle. Poor educational achievement of disadvantaged children is a consequence of the conditions they grow up in; and not a consequence of their actual cognitive capacities. Cognitive capacity, just like intelligence, is variable. Whether it increases or decreases, it depends on our approach to children.

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Romani children and their first language, Croatia

In this study, REYN Croatia analyzes the second language acquisition process and the effort it requires. In Croatia, some Roma speak Romani Chib while some use the Bayash Romanian language, and Croatian is spoken as the second language. The bilingual or multilingual skills of Romani children should be considered an added value rather than something to be repressed, even at home with family. Bilingual or multilingual children are often better at mastering new languages. Teachers should consider the effort made by Romani children in following classes led in Croatian and they should help them by teaching in an interactive way, giving Romani children the possibility to develop and improve their first language skills, giving value to their background using some words or phrases in the pupils’ mother tongue.

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A teacher – video

“A Teacher” (in Croatian, with English subtitles)

Produced by REYN Croatia.

This is the story of Vesna, a Croatian teacher in pre-primary school. Vesna’s first goal is to teach her pupils how to create a community. Why a community? They will be soon part of the society and they have to learn how to contribute to a community. Cooperative learning, work groups and games increase in pupils the feeling to be part of a community and they learn how to solve problems and conflicts in a peaceful way. Parents are important as well. Workshops for parents are held in the school in order to improve their sense of community. In this workshops parents can learn basic knowledge in order to hep their children in doing homeworks. Vesna’s approach includes on incentives, praises and rewards.

Good Stories: A kindergarten’s experience of inclusion

This video tells the story on the kindergarten’s experience of inclusion. What was their most important learning? What were the biggest challenges in building the trust between the preschool institution and Roma community? What are their plans for the future?

Realized by REYN Croatia.