Welcome! Together with Sarah Naylor McNamee from Sarah Naylor Academy we wrote this article yesterday! We felt inspired and wanted to share our expertise. Our article is waiting for the approval of the European Commission European Union, an official EU website! 🎉🎉🎉 The bad news is, that only registered and verified users have access to the EU platform. The good news is, that you can still read our article below 👇 👇👇
We feel proud and inspired! Fingers crossed article will be chosen to be published at the official European Union website 🇮🇪🇪🇺🤞
Have a good day! Aleks & Sarah
Authors (in alphabetical order) :
Aleksandra Marcinkowska EDU SMART TRAINING CENTRE LIMITED
Sarah Naylor McNamee Sarah Naylor Academy
Our goal of this article is to help educators to understand how to connect with their clients, learners, service users, especially those, who have immigrated to a new country and are finding it hard to integrate into a new culture and community.
Let’s begin by exploring some of the challenges that newcomers face. Adults from different backgrounds (including young adults) are at a stage in their lives where they are trying to figure out who they are, where they fit in, and how they can establish their own identity. For those who have immigrated to a new country, the process of identity formation becomes even more complex as they navigate through cultural differences, language barriers, and social norms. Educators have to be much more creative when working with multicultural groups rather than working with natives.
As educators, it’s important to understand that adults need support and guidance during this phase of their lives. However, the key to effective communication with them lies in educator’s creativity and ability to listen, empathise, and validate their educational process.
Here are some tips and tricks that you can use to communicate more effectively with your groups:
Active Listening: Listening actively means paying attention to what your service users, clients are saying, without interrupting or judging them. This means putting aside your own opinions and biases and trying to understand their perspective.
Empathy: Empathy is the ability to put yourself as an educator in someone else’s shoes and understand their situation. By showing empathy towards learners, you can help them feel heard and validated, accepted and included.
Validate their feelings: Validating your groups’ feelings means acknowledging their emotions, even if you don’t agree with them. Being part of different cultures may cause conflict. It is important that as an educator you know your group, you know your dos and don’ts. You are aware about other people background and education about different nations. By doing so, you can create a safe and supportive environment where your vulnerable adults feel comfortable expressing themselves.
Avoid Criticism: Avoid criticising your groups, even if you disagree with their choices or behavior. Criticism can make them defensive and resistant to your input. Instead, try to offer constructive feedback that focuses on their strengths and helps them learn from their mistakes. As learners from different cultures they might not see your feedback as a constructive one. They might feel offended. So whatever works for you as an educators, make sure it works for them as well.
Set boundaries: Setting boundaries is essential to maintaining a healthy relationship with your learners. It’s important to communicate your expectations and rules clearly, and to enforce them consistently. This helps them to feel secure and respected, even if they may not always agree with your decisions.
Now, let’s explore some exercises that you can do with your groups to help improve their communication skills and develop their creativity:
Active Listening Exercise: Sit down with your learners and ask them to share their thoughts and feelings on a particular topic. You can use some pictures, photographs, coaching cards as part of the creative educational process. As they speak, practice active listening by focusing on what they are saying, rather than formula ng your response. Once they finish, summarise what you heard them say and ask for clarification if needed. You can use a paraphrase tool. This is a neutral feedback form when used with the ’’ I ’’ statement.
Role-Play Exercise: Role-playing is a fun and interactive way to practice communication skills and develop creativity. Take turns playing the role of the educator and learner, and act out different scenarios that may come up in your professional relationship. This can help you identify potential areas of conflict and develop strategies for resolving them, especially when working with migrants. Remember to educate yourself about different cultures. It will help you to understand certain behaviors and not take things personally.
Journaling Exercise: Encourage your learners to keep a journal where they can write down their thoughts and feelings. This can be a great way for them to process their emotions and communicate with you in a non-confrontational way especially while entering a new reality in foreign countries. You can also keep a journal of your own to record your thoughts and reflections on your relationship with your learners too. This will help you to build a solid ground of trust.
For adults, who have immigrated to a new country, the process of integrating into a new culture can be overwhelming. Here are some tips and tricks that can help them navigate through this process:
Support them to learn the language: Learning the language of your new country can help you communicate with others and feel more integrated into the community. Consider taking language classes or practicing with language apps or books. Be creative! Use Kahoot, Inshot, Canva as part of your workshops and educational process. It is so much fun! Creativity does not need words.
Task example while working with disadvantaged adults:
1. Create your own “Five ideas for your holiday’’. Ask learners to use any of the tools mentioned (Kahoot, Inshot, Canva) to express their ideas and present the content on the forum. 2. Practice with them
3. Teach them how to find &me for cohesive creative thinking and how to ’’sell’’ their ideas to participants of adult workshops.
4. Teach them how to pitch their ideas during workshops with no English.
5. Bounce ideas off others
You can use a META Plan – Ask participants to complete META plan of 6 questions including:
Who are you?
How would you like to be seen by others?
How do others see you?
What are you best at? How do you know that?
What do you need to develop your creativity?
Who and what could help you with your ideas for your business
Ask learners to respond to those questions by creating a content using InShot or Canva.
Canva is a very simple free-to-use online graphic design tool. You could use it to create social media posts, presentations, posters, videos, logos and more.
InShot is an editing app for videos and photos. With InShot – video maker with music, you can easily make basic video and even advanced assets like video collage, smooth slow mo on, stop motion, reverse video and more.
Remember! People cannot, and should not, be defined by their disadvantage: it is the inequalities to which these potential disadvantages lead that need to be addressed.
As literature we recommend: Council of the European Union (2008) Council Resolution on beOer integrating lifelong guidance into lifelong learning strategies. 2905th Education, Youth and Culture Council meeting. Brussels: European Commission.
- Political, legal or civic equality.
- Equality of outcome (financial equality).
- Equality of opportunity (leveling of life chances).
- Equality of treatment (such as removing the means test) or responsibility (such as scope for making own decisions).
- Equality of membership in nato on, faith and family Mount, F (2008) ‘Five types of inequality’. JRF Viewpoint. York: Joseph Rowntree Foundation.
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