‘From the Wild Atlantic Way to North East Sicily’

‘From the Wild Atlantic Way to North East Sicily’

‘From the Wild Atlantic Way to North East Sicily’

Thu, Oct 22nd, 2015

Martina Needham is the Basic Education Coordinator in Donegal Education and Training Board. She recently returned from joint training with staff of Kerry Education and Training Board, funded under Erasmus+ Adult Education Key Action 1 (mobility projects for adult education staff).

“Donegal and Kerry ETB’s Adult Basic Education Service Staff shared an exciting training opportunity in Sicily in early September. Both ETBs had made applications to Erasmus+ Adult Education KA1. We discovered that the applications shared objectives, and staff were very willing and motivated to share training with each other. So through a series of emails between Donegal and Kerry, dates, locations and course providers were discussed, verified and finally agreed upon!

The training programme Donegal and Kerry ETBs in Sicilyand information material for the course were developed by EProject Consult, an Italian training provider, and delivered in Barcellona Pozzo di Gotto in North East Sicily. The core elements of the programme included:

• Working in an intercultural environment
• Communication challenges related to multicultural students
• Motivation – extrinsic and intrinsic
• Managing staff and managing change
• Development of problem solving skills
• Developing team working skills and sharing ideas and strategies

The trainers, along with the Sicilian sunshine, created an atmosphere that was both motivating and conducive to engagement. The mix of participants (from two different ETBs, located at opposite ends of the Wild Atlantic Way) and the skills of our faciliator, Natalia Seriakova from Germany, created a positive energy. As training progressed, Natalia presented scenarios, case studies, group and individual tasks which generated lively debates, discussion on developments and circumstances, and a willingness to view issues and topics from different perspectives.

Small group work and ‘walk and talk’ during outings meant that the Donegal and Kerry participants worked, laughed, learned and shared together. Participants availed of an opportunity, in a very different setting, to explore and reflect on their own practice and to investigate new approaches and strategies. Back home and with winter beckoning and the surf of the Wild Atlantic Way pounding both coastlines, the contacts made and the skills gained through this shared training will ensure continued links and sharing between the Basic Education Services of both Kerry and Donegal ETBs.

‘Grazie mille’ to all involved!”

Image courtesy of Martina Needham. We welcome contributions and ideas for ‘Insights’ at comms@leargas.ie.