By Capt Keaven Lozier, Canadian Forces Language School
Twice a year, the Canadian Forces Language School (CFLS) welcomes international students as part of the Military Training and Cooperation Program (MTCP) to attend a Language Teacher Training Course (LTTC). Located in Gatineau, the LTTC aims to develop and strengthen the teaching skills of foreign nationals who are or will become teachers of English as a foreign language with members of their respective countries. It also aims to develop teaching techniques (English as a second language) through theory and practice based on the communicative approach. All of this to improve overall communication and interoperability between international forces.
During the second cohort of 2017, which ran from August 14 to December 7, 16 candidates from 12 countries participated in this program. Among them, two candidates have kindly shared their experience.
Ms. Ia Pochkhua, English teacher from Georgia:
“To attend a LTTC in an English-speaking country is a great desire and a good opportunity for any English teacher. I am lucky and happy to be here in Canada participating in the MTCP program. From the very first day it was obvious that the organizers, as well as the teacher-trainers, did their best to create a friendly atmosphere and comfort for the learners from different countries to smoothly overcome culture shock and easily integrate us into the new environment. It should be mentioned that the hard process of teaching and learning was combined with cultural leisure time and fun. A big thank you to the organizers and teachers for their dedication, professionalism and tremendous work. We have not just learned new teaching methods and enhanced our language and teaching skills, but we also discovered a beautiful country and welcoming people. My home-stay family made my life in Canada feel like home. In the end, we made good friends with our fellow teachers from different countries. I am sure our friendships will support peacekeeping all over the world. I so much appreciate the passion and care the authorities, teacher-trainers and home-stay family demonstrated toward me. Thank you Canada and thank you LTTC Staff.”
Lieutenant Miguel Agustin Peña Guzman from Mexico:
“We are very privileged to have twelve countries brought together to collaborate in a beautiful and once in a lifetime experience. We gratefully acknowledge the DMTC, CFLS, and the LTTC’s magnificent staff for the interminable hours of planning and dedication that this course demands to tailor a suitable experience for us, and for showing us around the major cities and historical sites of this marvelous country. This course is for some, a means to improve their language teaching methods. For others, a universe full of possibilities. And for all, the beginning of a dream come true; some are language teachers, others are teachers in other subjects, and a few of us had never taught before. Therefore, we take as much as we can for this noble profession. The total immersion program gives us a natural state of life in true Canadian culture, where we abide by the virtues of loyalty, stewardship and excellence. Every time I say how nice my stay has been and how much I’ve enjoyed Canada, people often say to me, “But you haven’t experienced the harsh Canadian winter yet, that’s why!” This is quite amusing to me because what I see in the true Canadian summer is the warmth of its people’s hearts. In the end, I am as happy as a 5 year-old boy to be going to school again! Thanks to our Teacher-Trainers, who have won our hearts and minds, and who have been role models in every aspect, just as we will endeavor to be for our students.”
This post is also available in: Français (French)