The ‘Haus der kleinen Forscher’ Foundation has been committed to improving education for boys and girls of nursery and primary school age in the STEM subjects of science, technology, computer science, and mathematics since 2006. Together with 220 local network partners, the foundation provides a nationwide professional development programme that helps teachers and educators to provide children of nursery and primary school age with qualified support as they discover, research and explore. Around 65,000 pedagogical staff from more than 28,600 nurseries, after-school centres and primary schools have already attended training courses, thus reaching around 2.3 million children. The ‘Haus der kleinen Forscher’ foundation is Germany’s largest early education initiative, and the foundation’s partners include the Helmholtz Association, the Siemens Foundation, the Dietmar Hopp Foundation and the Deutsche Telekom Foundation. It is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
As it treads the path towards further digital development, over the next few months the foundation will be developing a ‘Haus der kleinen Forscher digital’ vision and a digital strategy. This will focus on the topics of learning, communication, organisation and data. As an external expert in digital learning and education, Prof. Christoph Igel has been appointed to the foundation’s new advisory board and will be supporting the foundation through this process. The advisory board will initially and primarily be tackling the opportunities and challenges of digital change for non-profit organisations, as well as reflecting on changes to the educational landscape and mapping out trends within politics, nursery and school education institutions, and adult education. The foundation plans to submit a funding proposal to the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in order to implement its digital plans.