Good feedback FSL

Impressions from the first seminar for international members of Teachers’ Union for Danish Independent Schools

D 27. april 2016

af Mikkel Hvid, Kommunikationschef

The time is a bit after 5 pm Friday afternoon when journalist Maria Larsen and theatre instructor Helle Brokjær start their presentation: “Getting the message across” about how you communicate so effectively that you are heard, understood and remembered.

This is the last feature of the first day at seminar for international members of Teachers’ Union for Danish Independent Schools (FSL) – the first of its kind, actually. The participants have already heard presentations about classroom management and the pedagogical work with children with special needs.

Tomorrow the participants can look forward to among other things a presentation about the Danish system of unions and agreement and about FSL and the independent schools.

Taking the late hour into consideration Maria Larsen and Helle Brokjær mix a cocktail of short theoretical presentations about language, communication and body language with a long row of practical exercises. The 23 international teachers practise relaxation exercises and how to stay grounded before they have to be “on” and perform, they practise communication by telling their life story to a partner in a minute, and they practise transforming the four elements – earth, water, fire and air – into different speeches and types – factual, inspiring, engaging etc.

Networking is great
It has been a long day, but a good day, tells one of the participants, Sze Yee Ong, from Skt. Josef’s International School in Roskilde. She took the train at 8.30 this morning and now – after the presentations and before dinner – ten hours have gone by. Ten intense hours. However, Sze Yee Ong, who is from Singapore, would not have missed one minute of today’s program. “It has been a fantastic day” she says.

She has been inspired and she is sure that a lot of the things that she has learned she will be able to use at home. And then she is happy to meet so many colleagues from independent international schools and departments.

“Several of the schools represented here today I had not heard about before I came here. It is amazing to hear about other schools and how they go about things”, she says.

And then Sze Yee Ong is excited about the Danish union system and the tradition with local negotiations between the different parties of the labour market.

“Your whole idea of solidarity is fantastic. I knew nothing of it before I came to Denmark” she says.

Better late than never
Also Gwyn Stephens from the international department of Skipper Clement Skolen is positively surprised.

Especially, about how good the speakers have been to involve and engage the participants. Gwyn Stephens had expected that it would be more sedentary, so he is pleasantly surprised. Not least because he himself works with the younger students and knows how important it is that the participants do not just sit and sit.

He is happy that Teachers’ Union for Danish Independent Schools (FSL) have arranged the seminar.

“It is great that I do not have to listen to Danes speaking and translate all the time” on the other hand he thinks it is a completely obvious initiative.