The training of adults, unlike that of children, is addressed by taking into account the personal involvement and experience of the learners. Adult learners have a different approach to learning. By the time you reach adulthood and with your experience of live, you’re most likely responsible for your own success and you’re perfectly capable of making your own decisions once you have the information you need.
Andragogy is the process of helping adults learn.
The word comes from the Greek andr, meaning man, and agogus, meaning leader. While pedagogy refers to the teaching of children, where the educator is the focal point, andragogy shifts the focus from the educator to the learner. Adults learn best when the focus is on them and they have control over their learning.
Michael Knowles, a pioneer and advocate of adult education, wrote more than 200 articles and books on adult education. He espoused five principles that he observed about adult learning at its best:
- Adults understand why something is important to know or do.
- They have the freedom to learn in their own way.
- Learning is experiential.
- The time is right for them to learn.
- The process is positive and encouraging.
Principles of Adult Learning
- Adults are autonomous and self-directed.
- Adults have accumulated a foundation of life experiences and knowledge.
- Adults are goal oriented.
- Adults are relevancy-oriented.
- Adults are practical.
- Adults, as with all learners, must be shown respect.
To promote inclusion in the learning process of adult migrants we have to respect their different backgrounds and respect, appreciate them as valuable member of the community.
Adults are most interested in learning subjects that have immediate relevance and impact to their job or personal life. Adult learners need to see how the learning subjects will help in real life, if not they won’t be excited about the learning process.
Specific needs that educators need to take in consideration
The most necessary topics for this part are:
- Treat everyone equally
- Knowledge of any taboo topics / of culture & religion of participants
- Manage to unite group!
- Personal approach
- Promote DIVERSITY
- Respect for language level
Trainers have to accept four steps, when they work with different migrant groups:
- Different people
- Understand the differences
- Percept the differences
- Appreciate the differences
Without them, the learning process won’t have any benefits. Based on this the trainers kit has to be developed.
All people in a classroom have common goals. If you look on the similarities and, on de differences, you’ll get rich by another point of view and create some new ideas.
- Drama and theatre games,
- Ice-breaking exercises,
- Image work and improvisations,