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A free, active, and easy way to learn English.

A large percentage of the population is over 65 and very healthy as life expectancy has become longer. Quality of life has improved. These Seniors are still very active, support their children and help raise their grandchildren. They enjoy learning things and they are an essential and effective pillar of society.  They want to feel involved in education, learning processes and social events. 

Our challenge is: How can we best teach the elderly? How can the elderly learn a second language? We asked ourselves these questions, and we realised that Montessori already answered these questions decades ago.

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OBJECTIVES and OUTCOMES

This project aims to achieve many results starting from a simple premise: seniors are more active and have more knowledge that you might imagine. Our long-term goal is to build bridges between seniors in different European countries. The crucial point of the project is experimenting with the English language and using it for communication instead of teaching it the traditional, more theoretical way. You can use the Montessori method to teach the elderly by creating places where they can learn English, experiment with the English language and participate socially in European culture: the EnForSe Corners! Through these activities, the EnForSe Corners will give opportunities for meetings between Seniors who live in different countries and use English to communicate. Through this project, we will introduce the Montessori Method to teachers and adult trainers operating in the field of language education for adults.

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NUMBERS AND PROFILE OF THE PARTICIPANTS

10-15 seniors over 65, retired teachers, retired workers in general, unemployed seniors who have never been able to graduate and wish to learn and restart their studies, or simply seniors who need company and challenging activities.

ACTIVITIES

International meetings where each partner organisation will be represented, bringing their experience to the table, sharing needs and being involved in the creation and implementation of EnForSe Corners and EnForSe Day. Learning and Teacher Trainings courses on: The Montessori Method from the basics to its applications, practices inspired by the Montessori Method. 3.Creating EnForSe practical guidelines to teach English to seniors using a Montessori-inspired Workshop method to define and create the activities and schedule for the EnForSe Corners and EnForSe Day. EnForSe Special Room that is located  in EUROPE FOR ALL’s premises in order to coordinate all the EnForSe Corners. English corner station called EnForSe Corner will be set up at the headquarters of each partner, where activities will be carried out to put the various organizations in contact with each other. EnForSe Day, where all participants will use English to communicate and socialise.

METHODOLOGY

The Montessori Method was created to help brain-damaged children to learn. Our aim is to use this method to teach English to seniors.  Our strategy is to create an EnForSe corner in each partner location, a place to learn English in an experimental way, creating an active way of living and learning and filling their time with meaningful activities (such as the EnForSe day), using and experimenting with a new pedagogical approach to teach foreign language to seniors: a Montessori-inspired method to teach English to seniors. Using the brain to learn new notions or to deepen those already acquired helps the mind stay in shape: the so-called Brain Fitness.

RESULT

Each partner will involve 6-15 seniors in English lessons and EnForSe activities, targeting a total number of 36-90 seniors over 65 years in age), but this number may also increase. 15-18 English teachers trained in a Montessori-inspired method for teaching seniors. Written practical EnForSe guidelines on how to teach English to seniors. 1 EnForSe special room created for sustainability and dissemination. 6 EnForSe Corners created, 6 EnForSe day events implemented.

IMPACT

Spreading knowledge through dissemination of the EnForSe practical guidelines for teaching English to seniors; Bridges built between different countries; Seniors involved in European identity and culture and sense of belonging; The elderly will create social connections, extend their network of knowledge and friendships;better quality of life for seniors.

In the long term, these EnForSe corners will remain and continue to organise events, cultural days, English lessons for seniors and other activities.

The elderly represent an invaluable resource of memory and experience, and they can help educate the younger generations in a way that no one else can. In short, even though it is true that even in a society where a long and healthy life is expected, the elderly still face significant problems, there are nevertheless solutions and activities that can be helpful for them. However, we must not divert attention from this issue, because it affects us all, first indirectly and later directly, as we all grow older. We hope that over time we can talk more and more about inclusion and solutions, and less about exclusion and difficulties. This project focuses on senior learners, to give them new chances to learn and to live a more meaningful life, to gain new experiences. But in order to do this we will aim to enhance skills of low-skilled adults and retired teachers as well as current teachers. Using a Montessori-inspired method and English language, we will try to define a method for language teaching based on the concept of the Montessori methodology, which can be an adaptive, intuitive, easy to implement, practical and easy way for people of all ages to understand the concept of learning languages. Through this project, we also aim to introduce the Montessori Method to the field of language learning for adults and promoting the acquisition of key competencies and skills throughout the education and training system. The project aims at building bridges through different ages and European countries, creating meaningful activities, using and experimenting with new pedagogical approaches to teach foreign languages to seniors.

EnForSe IS AN ERASMUS+ PROJECT

This project is funded with the support of the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union. Project number KA2: 2020-1-IT02-KA204-079745 This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.