October 30 2017 The World in Your Classroom Training Session

On the evening of October 30 2017, the training room at PEP Den Haag burst with energy from a large group of internationals who live in the Hague region and want to become volunteer guest lecturers, conversation givers or conversation co-examiners at local Dutch high schools.


For over two hours and a half, participants got to learn about cooperative learning as a teaching tool to make their lectures or lessons more interactive. This is always a good idea for teenagers who usually cannot concentrate well if they are passively listening to instructions and educational content. Trainer Lia Bekking-Slootjes used her many years of classroom experience and training Dutch teachers to convey theory but also a lot of practical tips once in the classroom.

TWIYC coordinator, Lucie Cunningham explained the process of how matches are made between volunteers and classrooms. She also gave plenty of examples of topics or activities that previous participants used in their guest lectures.

Our group worked hard through the many steps of the training and questions about the Dutch school system. They brainstormed in groups about what kind of topics could be exciting and relevant to their target audience: Dutch young people for whom English, French, Spanish, German or Mandarin Chinese is not their mother languages. This lead to a very creative list of topics everyone could be inspired from. More tips followed in an email as there is so much to work out in one session that we like to give our participants a few days to reflect on what they learnt to come up with their own strategies for narrowing down their learning goals for  the pupils they will be assigned this school year and which tools  (cooperative structures) would be optimal for that.

We hope that the positive energy and pleasant interactions of our participants will continue beyond this session, online in a LinkedIn group, through Whatsapp groups or small working groups working on their presentations at a location they choose.

Schools gradually communicate their schedules and wishes for guest lecturers and volunteers in various functions in several languages.

A big thank you to Reza Mirkarimi for all these beautiful pictures capturing the positive and educational spirit of this evening!

Time for some preparation for those visits before they all can come back to tell one another and us how their classes went during a thank you party at PEP Den Haag in December!