Teaches Training with Erasmus + July 1, 2019
By Charlotte Lou Langdon

Teacher Training: A course facilitated by Rakesh Rootsman Rak and Graham Bell


What were the specific benefits of the course?
Increased confidence- On the course we were all given the opportunity to facilitate two topics and get feedback on how it went. Feedback from the other students was structured in this way; "What did you appreciate about this presentation?" Because of this, all the students had the opportunity to hear about what went well and what the others liked. Critical feedback was part of our own self-assessment.

Strengthened European network - In addition to participants and teachers from England and Scotland, there were participants who had traveled from Switzerland, Italy, the Netherlands, Bulgaria and France - so there was a dynamic culture and language exchange - there were new recipes in the kitchen and future opportunities for collaboration and visits to projects all over Europe.

New teaching tools- We were shown the tool box and were given access to
“The Tool Kit” or Toolbox for Teaching Permaculture. We also got the opportunity to design our own teaching tools and aids.

A learning group that continues after the end of the course. In this online learning group, we will continue to learn together on the topic of Permaculture, but also make educational materials that we can share with each other.


Some topics presented

Security on courses
Powerpoint presentations
Lesson Plans
PDC (Permaculture Design Certificate Course) syllabus
Collaboration with other educators
Teaching tools
Different teaching / facilitation strategies
Diverse learning styles


Practical experience
In addition to this, we were all given the opportunity to teach 2 subjects. The idea was that we should choose a topic that we knew inside out - and a topic that we had difficulty with or did not know very well. It was a great way to practice the teaching methods we had learned - for example, asking open questions to the participants.

These teaching opportunities gave us the chance to see the other teachers, their different style and techniques, their creativity and diversity in the way they conveyed information. This for me was one of the important learning opportunities on the course. We were subsequently given the opportunity to evaluate how things were going - and to give feedback to each other about what we liked. This positive focus on feedback meant that all participants improved their confidence and could feel their progression and development unfurl throughout the week. The participants dared to experiment and try new methods and techniques, new topics, without worrying about the result, but instead just giving themselves into the experience with an attitude of "yes, but then I can learn something after all!"

The group culture and the course structure:
There were many opportunities for learning on the course besides the syllabus and homework into the lessons. The course itself was structured in a way that was very inspiring and gave the participants plenty of opportunities to think about how they would organize courses themselves in the future.

The group culture was a big part of this learning for me - the group really gathered the day before the course started, and on the first day we had "sociocracy" where the participants themselves helped to design a common vision for the course, as well as design: the group culture, food/cooking and cleaning.

The group culture consisted of some agreement between us in the group, for example, that we listened and did not interrupt each other - that we took care of our own and each other's needs or tried to comply with the schedule. Every day there was an opportunity to look at our “Culture board” which was a scale where we could together evaluate how it went.
Here we are looking at our “culture board” and making the necessary changes for the day.



The food on the course was arranged by the participants. Purchases were made in advance where food was ordered from a local food cooperative. The participants cooked together during the course and this contributed to a strong community bonds and the opportunity for learning about all sorts of topics ... and not just about the course topics. I would also like to test this structure on my courses in the future.

Use of communication before and after the course
Whatsapp, facebook and other media can all be great tools for linking the group together before they have even met. The participants in the course here had a little talk, were able to arrange joint transport and shopping before the course started. It was also possible to upload pictures, files and links to the whatsapp group during the course, so that participants could capture important points and share inspiration that could be used as a resource later.

Last thought…

An inspiring quote from our teachers:
“A fantastic teacher is not the smartest person in the room. It is the one that makes everyone else the smartest in the room ”

Thanks for a great teacher training - or as we called it on the course
“Facilitator-of-learning training”
I will use these new skills, techniques, tools and my increased self-confidence in my future dissemination! Many thanks to the course facilitators, the other participants, Erasmus + and Permakultur Denmark for this fantastic opportunity that has helped me with my development as a facilitator of learning in Permaculture!