New language assistants given extra motivation by infectious enthusiasm of former ones.

On 21st June, Movetia invited Swiss language assistants who will be working in various countries in the next school year to the preparatory seminar. The reports of former language assistants, who have themselves worked as teachers abroad before, made a considerable contribution to its success. In the relaxed and, at the same time, extremely animated atmosphere, even lunch was almost forgotten.Many of the participants no doubt hoped that, in a few months’ time, their command of English would be as good as that of the four speakers for the British workshop. After all, most of them want to teach English one day. In the next school year, there are 22 places on the other side of the English Channel. Eight participants from Western Switzerland are drawn to Germany. “Teach a smattering of Schwizerdütsch,” was the workshop leader’s recommendation. “The pupils have great fun with that!”A lot of time was set aside for another main aim of the seminar: ideas and suggestions for language lessons. The class was led by two lecturers in language teaching methods and supplemented with enthusiastic contributions from among the new relay of language assistants.A total of 38 Swiss participants will be working from autumn onwards in one of the four partner countries – Britain, Germany, France or Austria. There are still a few things to sort out before then, such as the administrative formalities in Switzerland, for example, or the search for somewhere to live in the host country. And anyone who has never been away from home for any length of time before is no doubt pleased to know that Movetia has set up a mentoring programme. The new contacts formed at the seminar will also be a valuable source of support during the period spent as an assistant.