What is the background of Metodes.lv’s author – Toms Urdze?
I was born and grew up in Germany. After graduating from the Latvian Gymnasium in Muenster, I studied adult education at the University of Oldenburg and got involved in a number of social projects in Latvia. In 1995 I moved to Latvia. Since then I work in the field of adult education. Much of this work has been with the Latvian Adult Education Association, of which I was Chairman of the Board for three years. As an adult educator and trainers my main focus are topics related to teaching and learning.
I have been involved in the designing of a number of training programmes for adult educators and I am the author of a number of learning resources.
For many years now I regularly take part in the assessment of projects in the fields of adult education for the European Commission.
Where does Metodes.lv content originate?
Metodes.lv is a platform where to share results from various projects in which I have been involved. Most of the methods and thoughts included in Metodes.lv are closely linked to my long experience in conducting seminars and workshops (for more than 25 years now) for a wide range of target groups.
The site’s core forms my book “To be. To do. To know. – A compilation of adult education and facilitation methods” (in Latvian) – published in 1999 by the Latvian Adult Education Association (LAEA). At that time it became a popular resource among adult educators in Latvia, but in 2001 it was also published in Estonia. Around that time the first website with the book’s content went online.
In 2003, I was involved in another project by LAEA, in which we created a 160 training course for adult educators. In the accompanying book “KomPas – Manual for Adult Educators” were published the first versions of the articles on communication, group dynamics, and teaching, that can be found on Metodes.lv.
In 2012, I wrote another manual – this time for Serbian adult educators, in the framework of the project “The Second Chance – Systemic Development of Elementary Practice Based Adult Education in Serbia”. This was a good opportunity to update the theoretical articles and the list of methods. In 2015 the manual was translated in published in the Ukraine.
In 2015 and 2016, I was involved in two projects for the Baltic retail operator Rimi. In the framework of the first project a small book was created “Handbook for implementing Rimi values”, which contained activities, methods, and tools to help implement Rimi values in the company. The later project resulted in a “learning guide”, which contains methods and resources for planning, implementing, and evaluating the learning process.
In 2020 and 2021, I was involved in the development of the Rethink (Pārdomāt) mentor training programme, developed in the framework of a project of the same name led by the Zemgale Planning Region.
The most recent section “Education Technologies” reflects my experience at Ventspils University of Applied Sciences, where, from 2019 until 2023, I supported teachers in the adaptation of educational technologies and the development of online courses.
How does the English content on the site differ from the Latvian content?
The primary aim of Metodes.lv is to provide information in Latvian, as there are already a large number of resources available in English on the topics covered here. The core of the English content consists of material that has been published/translated into English as part of the above-mentioned projects.
Is the information found here up-to-date and still relevant?
Most of the method descriptions and articles on Metodes.lv have not lost their relevance, but some entries may seem outdated. I try to revise their content as much as possible, for example to check the links in the articles, but the content itself is largely unchanged. I invite you to judge for yourself if and how these ideas and thoughts fit with your interests and needs!
How can I support Metodes.lv?
- Send me your feedback and suggestions!
- If you have ideas for the development of the site or see opportunities for collaboration, I’d love to hear your thoughts!
- Consider using my experience to further your own goals, for example by organising a workshop on the issues raised by Metodes.lv, or collaborating with me in the development and implementation of new educational projects!