Teacher supporting training, coaching and mentoring for successfully beating challenges of today’s learning environment
"The project was funded by the European Commission. The views expressed on this website do not necessarily reflect those of the European Commission."
6-12 / 08 /2023
Where was I and why (what was the motivation)? - About the course
During the one-week training in Rovinj, Croatia, we were taught important skills that we can apply in both our professional and personal lives. My aim was to acquire skills that would help me in my teaching work in the long term, to solve stumbling blocks, and so I chose the English language course in Teacher Wellbeing. The course leader, Ramóna Szász, led the group with incredible preparation, dynamism and enthusiasm.
Together we discovered how to renew ourselves emotionally and spiritually, how to become stronger, gain new motivation and how to fight burnout. We were given guidance on how to aim to balance work and personal life without neglecting either.
The course started immediately with positive reinforcement that those who recognise or admit to experiencing burnout are not a sign of weakness but of sensitivity, typically people with higher emotional intelligence are the first to experience it. Burnout is a condition that can affect our daily lives and can have long-term detrimental effects on our physical, mental and emotional well-being, mainly caused by prolonged stress and increased emotional strain. The risk of burnout is much higher in professions where there is excessive responsibility and emotional strain, such as health workers, teachers and senior managers. Sometimes we don't even see the road ahead and wonder about ourselves. Why am I irritable, tired, demotivated or even anxious? Why do I withdraw from a community I used to love to be in? This is where we need to recognise that change is needed.
Because teaching is a series of interactions, we convey non-verbal messages as well as verbal ones, so relationships with learners and colleagues can be damaged if someone cannot find a way out of their situation. We can be at our maximum BEING, supportive and creatively involved in the life of the school when we ourselves are in balance. This requires positive psychology, which can be learnt by everyone, of course with longer and regular practice, awareness of our emotions, which influence our reactions and behaviour in a given situation, and in line with this, a thorough knowledge of our "triggers". The ability to draw my boundaries (to mention a few, but not all: emotional, relational, moral, financial) and to say no are of particular importance.
All the while, in small groups, we practised active listening techniques, the importance of self-messaging and the correct way of assertive communication. We did a lot of individual self-discovery exercises with the aim of getting closer to ourselves and therefore to others. In the long term, this contributes to the development and maintenance of well-functioning relationships between equals.
Afternoon programmes, EU principles
As the course started in the early afternoon, there was the opportunity to explore Rovinj, the jewel in the crown of Istria, in the mornings. A slice of Italy in Croatia, it offers endless opportunities for wandering. For a picturesque view, walk from the northern part of the town to the Old Town. The tower of St. Euphemia soars magnificently into the sky. One of the most immediately obvious foundations of sustainable development is the shift from imported goods to locally made products, such as typical cheeses, hams, various olive oils and wines. In addition, the preservation of the maritime heritage is a priority for the region and one of our initiatives is centred in Rovinj, the Ecomuseum-Batana, which has been included in the Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Croatia. The Rovinj Regatta is one of the most important events in the town, which aims to preserve the history of mainsailing. It is a great practice to educate children bilingually (Croatian and Italian) in kindergarten and then to include English and German lessons in school. Rovinj is a true multicultural centre.