Welcome to the New Year and the new 2017 ABCi Newsletter. We would like to say thank you to our network of staff members, student teachers, Austrian pupils, schools, and partners - which in 2016 has become bigger than ever. As we look back on our fifth year as a non-profit organization in Austria, we are positioned to expand our outreach into even more schools and regions in 2017, exploring uncharted territory and continuing to make a difference in the lives of English students and aspiring teachers around the world.
WHAT’S IT LIKE IN AUSTRIA?
Experiencing life as an ABCi student teacher
By Chelsea Workman
Many of us left the big cities of our previous residences, such as London, Budapest, and Dublin, to enjoy the peaceful countryside of rural Austria. And while a few of us still live the urban life, we enjoy our commute into the forest each day, or through the land side to Austrian schools, as a chance to experience the unique tranquility that only these famous hills have to offer. Each morning, on our drive to schools and back, we watch as the colours of the leaves change from green to bright orange to brown; as the tall forest of uniform trees braves the icy winter cold; as the freezing temperatures subside and spring emerges like a clear, crisp creek flowing through mountain crevices. We enjoy finding our place, and in some cases even our home, in the wonderful and ever changing landscape that is so unique to Austria.
As travelers, we know that family is not necessarily that group of people you were born into, but the friends you make along your journey. In our journey, which for most of us involves travelling the world teaching English, we’ve made fabulous and unlikely friends, grown close to incredibly talented colleagues, and met hospitality in almost every corner we’ve visited. So yes, we love Austria for the open-mindedness of the people we encounter here, for the friendships we’ve made, for the beautiful strangers we’ve come across, and for their generosity and kindness. Without all of you, we couldn’t keep doing what we do.
MAY WE INTRODUCE – JULIA STOIBER!
Hello, my name is Julia Stoiber and I am a Course Tutor at ABCi. I live in the Mühlviertel, which means the Mill quarter, in Austria. I moved there from Cheltenham, England, just over nine years ago. My love affair with teaching began shortly after that. I was invited into a primary school in Linz to help the teachers there with teaching English.
I worked in several settings after that, but decided to make teaching my career. I obtained my CELTA in Vienna, which really kick-started my teaching of adults. I remember trying not to shake with nerves during my first lesson! This led to being sought after by language institutes in Linz and Rohrbach and after one year of working with the Cambridge Institute in Linz, I was promoted to Head Teacher. Determined to fulfil my duties well, I enrolled on several courses, one of which was a management course which I felt really helped to give my leadership style some direction. I like Scott Thornbury's idea: "Be a guide on the side, not a sage on the stage." That works for teaching, teacher training and management alike!
I decided to study again and I passed my Trinity Dip exam this May, and followed it up with a Train the Trainer course in Prague last Summer, until I joined ABCi in August 2016. I now work with the Student Teachers and love to see them growing as new teachers over the weeks. They are a great group of people and the car journeys to and from schools are a great time to address concerns and tips. I observe the Student Teachers during their Teaching Practice and we discuss how it went in feedback sessions. Being able to explain things in various ways really helps here!
Main Aim: By the end of this course, I hope Student Teachers will have become fully fledged 'Teaching Nerds'!