Making real connections with people – that’s what work is about for me. Connecting in order to develop professionally - in education. I train, teach, write and coach. I have been involved in English language teaching, teacher development and writing throughout my career, and CLIL in the last decade. I work in many countries and contexts with teachers, trainers and managers in educational institutions (from secondary schools to universities) to support them in their development. Curious for more? Here are my career story in prose and my Curriculum Vitae.
My training style is facilitative, professional and personal, enthusiastic and engaging: you don’t sit still and you take ideas home that you can use tomorrow. My drive is supporting people in their own learning and development. One of my favourite quotes from Kahlil Gibran summarizes best my vision about teaching and learning. I can ‘translate’ theory into practice for my participants and am a keen proponent of multiple intelligence theory: people just learn in different ways.
People say that I am effective, creative, well-informed and inspiring. I have loads of energy, am well-organized and have a lifelong passion for learning and teaching. Contact with my clients and participants is vital. I listen carefully to my clients and am always curious about how other people from other cultures live, and who they are.
I love learning. I hold a Bachelor’s degree in English and French (Exeter University) and a Master’s degree in Applied Linguistics for English Language Teaching (Lancaster University). But there are further – perhaps more important - courses which have influenced me both personally and professionally. A teacher development course at International House Hastings set me on the road to a life-long interest in teachers as people as well as professionals. More recently, I have followed a three-year personal development course at ITIP, School for Life and Work, which helped me become more whole as a person and a better coach, trainer and facilitator. I am a mindfulness trainer, too.
A short video of me with my co-author Liz Dale at an IATEFL conference, talking about CLIL and co-authoring also reveals some of our well-kept educational secrets.
I live with my partner, and my two teenagers, a son (1994) and a daughter (1999), in Amersfoort – a mediaeval town in the centre of the Netherlands. My partner is a “haptotherapist” – a particularly Dutch phenomenon – which is a therapist who works both with talking and with touch. In my free time, I love travelling and walking – from walks in the woods nearby to longer treks in the Himalaya or Andes. And music is a part of my life too Here is a song which inspires me, in my life and in my work (in Dutch).