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    A group of trainee teachers from Russia recently completed a ‘bespoke’ teacher training course at Sussex Coast College Hastings.

    12 students made the 2,220 mile journey from Penza State University, in the Penza region of Russia, to Hastings to help them improve their English and learn a range of effective teaching methods and best practice techniques.

    The students spent two weeks studying elements from the Cert TESOL course, which was tailored to give them a fast-track version of the course. Studying for 25-hours a week, the students were able to improve their English vocabulary, practice pronunciation, and learn a range of tips and techniques to help students get the most out of their lessons.

    During their free time, the group had the opportunity to visit Rye, Bodiam Castle, and have a guided tour of London.

    Olga Kurtashkina has been teaching for two years and really enjoyed studying in Hastings. She said: “I learned a lot and really enjoyed the lessons. The teaching practice elements were really good and quite challenging. I thought that all of the teachers were really professional, helpful and really friendly and it was a pleasure to be part of their class.”

    Nadezhda Proniakova has 15 years of teaching experience and really enjoyed working with the rest of her group to practice teaching methods. She said: “The course was great and I really enjoyed having the opportunity to teach an ESOL class at the college. I’ve been able to take a lot of things from this experience, such as new teaching techniques, ideas to decorate the classroom, and using ICT more frequently, and will adopt them when I return home to my classes.”

    The students were given the opportunity to study in Hastings thanks to a newly established partnership between the college and university, as the education faculty at the university looks to increase professional development and training opportunities abroad.

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