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The second group of consultans paid the visit to the University of Chichester
freeu erasmus noweTeacher consultants of the Świętokrzyskie In-service Teacher Training Centre again learnt from their colleagues in the UK how to teach adults. In June 2016, the second group of consultants left for England which has been a leader in adult education for years.

The description

PhD Duncan Reavey from the University of Chichester acted as a guide to the Polish visitors and initiated them into the mysteries of British education. He was supported by Mary Young, who works as a lecturer at the same university. On the first day teachers from Kielce paid a visit to Fareham College, where Nicola Nageon de Lestang, lead manager, higher education, showed the guests around the premises of the school and then presented methods they use while teaching students including adult ones.

'Our school cooperates with local entrepreneurs and it is often them who indicate, which jobs are the most in demand. Companies offer work placements or internships to help students gain valuable work experience and provide the best ones with work after finishing their training. Syllabuses of our courses are adapted to the needs of adult learners. who decide to return to school/college as adult students to continue their education. We know that such people need to learn specific skills – necessary for their careers. We spare no efforts to, for example, enable learning mothers to take their kids to school and fetch them after their lessons. Teachers are well-disposed towards adult learners, recognizing their needs and limitations,' said Nicola Nageon de Lestang.

In one of the branches of Farenham College, The Center for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (CEMAST), Polish consultants were speaking to 42-year-old Toby who decided to improve his professional qualifications and enroll on an engineering course after working as an electrician for many years.

'My son has become a grown-up. I was offered a better position in my company but I have to gain new skills. I have had a very good relationship with my younger colleagues from the college since I started studying there. They are certainly better at operating computers than I am but I have practical knowledge. We share our skills,' said Toby during the meeting.

During the visit to the University of Chichester, the teacher-consultants got to know an unusual method used in teaching adults – 'Serious play - Using Lego to enhance creativity'. During the workshop, a trainer explained what participants were supposed to do and added that he often applied a teaching method based on 'playing with Lego' during the courses concerning entrepreneurship, economy and business.

In this way, students learn about not only innovativeness but also openness. The consultants from the Świętokrzyskie In-service Teacher Training Centre underwent short creativity training, too. With the use of Lego bricks and pieces they had to tell others something about themselves, show good and bad points about their work, and at the end of the workshop they had to outline a vision of development of the SCDN together. The reason for playing with Lego bricks was not only to enhance creativity but also, as it turned out, to test language skills, because each participant had to describe their building or structure in their own words.

The most important part of the English visit was undoubtedly a meeting with Jackie Scruton and Belinda Ferguson from the University of Nottingham, authors of the book: "Teaching and Supporting Adult Learners".

While writing a book, the authors based on their long-standing experience concerning their work with adults. According to them, work of a tutor who is a teacher that gives a lesson to one adult learner, is the most efficient method of teaching. Thanks to this, a teacher gets to know a learner, their needs, gives necessary support, and informs them about their progress and success at each stage of education, which is the most important.

'Adults learn in a different way comparing with children. Most important of all, a teacher should make use of their life experience and understand their limitations: a fear of using new technologies and disappointment with their former learning and their inaccurate knowledge. Adult learners cannot be overwhelmed by learning. They must acquire their skills and knowledge step by step, and after achieving them a tutor can establish subsequent goals,' advised Jackie Scruton and Belinda Ferguson from the University of Nottingham, the authors of the book: "Teaching and Supporting Adult Learners".

During the stay in England, the teacher consultants also took part in two conferences concerning learning including foreign languages, which were organized by the University of Chichester.

The visit to the UK was planned and prepared by Aneta Bródka, a teacher consultant of the Świętokrzyskie In-service Teacher Training Centre in Kielce, a coordinator of the project In-service training of teachers for adults – an opportunity and a new challenge for ŚCDN". The visit will result in an offer of the Świętokrzyskie In-service Teacher Training Centre for teachers from Świętokrzyskie Province who work with adults for the next academic year 2016 - 2017.

The photos


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