Teachers' Testimonials

Teachers' Testimonials


I believe that teaching in general, and teaching languages especially, should be a deeply engaging, entertaining, and practical process. The best way to do this, for me, is to put the learners in the driving seat, as much in control of their own education as possible, customising each lesson to the unique needs of people from diverse cultural and educational backgrounds.  I give my students the tools to continue improving and teach them practical language, such as business vocabulary, English for presentations and negotiations as well as how to make small talk. My ultimate goal is to teach my students the language they will make use of both in their future careers and in everyday life.


The new French language service at the Natolin campus of the College of Europe has been designed as a response to the many demands of the contemporary world.  Our approach focusses on the full range of communication skills needed to enter the 21 century job market. We pay special regard to the need to develop cultural diversity.  Through the use of French and francophone media sources our courses are highly interactive, practical, up-to-date and highly stimulating. Tailor-made and individualised study programmes guarantee effectiveness of the learning experience and rapid progress.


Survival Polish - this course takes place at the very beginning of the academic year in the first weeks of September. It is offered to help students adapt to the local environment and focuses primarily on basic communicative skills. After this mini - course students are able to hold a short basic conversation.  They can also order taxis and communicate with taxi drivers, order food in a restaurant and do shopping. They are able to operate with numbers and use basic polite expressions. Survival Polish gives a solid base to function in Poland for a couple of months and might also serve as an introduction to a regular Polish course at beginner level.

Regular course - these are offered at all levels of ability, for those students who want to continue their adventure after the survival course and also for those who already speak Polish. Courses are tailored for future EU officials, interpreters, and journalists, but also for those who simply want to be more fluent. All such options are available. Courses are run by fully qualified philologists with many years’ experience teaching Polish as a foreign language at all levels, including for Slavic students.


Everyone is different, everyone has a different background in education and, consequently, everyone learns in a different way. Since the environments we grew up in had different teaching cultures and traditions, there is no universal teaching methodology which could work for all of us. Because of that, it is vital for a teacher to approach every student as an individual and to tailor courses to their individual needs. Whether the teaching/learning process is successful depends on the knowledge and personalities of the teacher as well as the student. Everyone has clearly defined goals and expectations as regards foreign language lessons and every path or method that leads to fulfilling them is right. When it comes to language teaching methodology, I focus on teaching a foreign language through culture and, conversely, culture through language study. I always say to my students that teaching a foreign language is not merely presenting one's students with new grammatical structures or vocabulary, but to a large extent incorporates, or should incorporate, some cultural element, which is inseparable from the language itself.


The learning process is not just about expanding your lexicon and grammar structures. Apparently everybody knows it. Nevertheless, not everybody is concerned about learning communication skills. Striving to master a language means becoming a member of a totally new cultural-behavioral system in which separate words are often useless. Communication in a foreign language is a gathering of well-defined, foreseeable reactions to different communicative situations. Those reactions, though, cannot be abstracted from the culture in which the language system works. That is why teaching and learning a language considering the cultural background is so important and relevant when we want to achieve complete linguistic and pragmatic competences in a foreign language. Undoubtedly, these processes should be strongly personalised as everyone assimilates differently, and therefore differs from the others in his/her own assimilation style. In the case of the Spanish learning experience at the Natolin Campus , the teaching/learning process is also focused on linguistic interferences between Spanish, English, French, Italian and Russian.

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