What makes a good adult education teacher?
Since 2000, the Erasmus+ programme has consistently provided opportunities for adult education teachers and trainers, as well as other staff involved in adult education, to improve their skills by job-shadowing colleagues across Europe or by attending courses. Since 2014, additional opportunities for networking and exchange of best practices are available through EPALE, the e-Platform for Adult learning in Europe.
When Simon Broek, EPALE thematic coordinator, explored a number of ideas related to quality in adult learning, he pointed out that ‘one of the most important factors of a quality adult learning environment is the quality of the facilitator’.
Hubert and Niamh, who have benefitted from Erasmus+ grants, have offered to share their inspirational stories
Hubert Skrzyński currently heads a prison school in central Poland, where he teaches English and Polish. He has implemented a number of Erasmus+ Adult Education projects, applying learning experiences from other prison education systems in Europe to his home institution in order to encourage social inclusion through education. Taking part in these projects has permitted Hubert to develop a network of contacts through which innovative exchanges take place and new ideas and techniques are shared. Hubert's experience has opened many doors for him, including the following milestones: founding an association for socially excluded people; writing several articles on prison education; and serving on the steering committee of the European Prison Education Association.
Niamh Mc Call, from Ireland, took part in a learning mobility project which involved travelling to Luxembourg to attend the European Basic Skills Network conference in June 2017. She says, ‘It was fantastic to hear and see the different schemes that are taking place across Europe and I found the whole experience really worthwhile. I would encourage any adult educators given an opportunity to travel abroad, to participate in sharing best practice policies or initiatives, to do so.’
If, like Hubert and Niamh, you would like to travel throughout Europe to develop your teaching skills, make sure your organisation applies for an Erasmus+ Adult Education mobility project, and look for the right opportunity for you in the EPALE calendar of courses and events!