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Swiss miss in Geraldton

Geschrieben von Sandra & Thomas
Wednesday, 8. October 2008

Bericht aus dem Geraldton Guardian vom 8. Oktober 2008

Bild aus Geraldton Guardian

Swiss miss at school

Swiss travellers Sandra Gunthart and her partner Thomas never planned to travel to Australia, preferring instead to continue exploring developing countries through Asia. However they did venture to WA and it was while enjoying a coffee as their clothes spun in a Geraldton Laundromat, that the City began to turn the lives of the travellers in an alternative direction.

"Geraldton was really nice, not too big, not too small, we just had a good feeling that it was a nice place to be," Sandra said.

Leaning Tree Community School will now benefit from Sandra's experience as a pre-primary school teacher during term four and Sandra feels fortunate that the school is a learning environment that reflects the education system in Switzerland.

"Leaning Tree Community School is very similar to schools in Switzerland, the children are learning through hands on experiences and there are a lot of good quality resources, often made of natural products as happens in Swiss schools."
Sandra said class structures were also similar, including Multi Age Grouping (MAG) and the students staying with the same teacher for a number of years. "Multi Age Grouping is a very social way of learning as students learn from the older children who are in turn able to help the younger children.  Activities are easily adapted by the teacher and students to suit developmental levels," said Sandra.

Sandra will be opening the minds of the students to the world beyond Geraldton by teaching the students German. "Learning a foreign language is so important for intellectual development," she said. "We will be writing letters in German to a school in Switzerland, in this is way the children understand that you learn a language to communicate and to make friends with people in another country."