University of Applied Science, Teacher Training Institute Primary Education
Hogeschool Katholieke PABO Zwolle
Ten Oeverstraat 68,
8012 EW Zwolle,
Tel.: +31 (0)384217425
Erasmus code: NL ZWOLLE06
Harrie Poulssen (international Officer)
Bert Thole (Coordinator IM)
About the University:
The Katholieke Pabo Zwolle, also known as KPZ, is an independent Interactum University of Applied Sciences (Dutch "hogeschool"). There are over 650 students and a staff of about 70. This means that the KPZ is one of the many small- to medium-sized institutes for higher professional education in the Netherlands.
The International Minor Program(IM) is a five month course in English for 30 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System). The website contains all the necessary information about our teacher training course in which we combine theory and practice and offer a varied study programme with a clear structure using the module system and ECTS. For the IM you need a required level of English like TOEFL or IELTS.
How can I apply?
Each year we have an international minor in spring semester from 1st of February until 1st of July.
Deadline for application is: 1 November (previous calendar year)
For application you need to fill in this student application form and mail it to us.
[application form on the website]
Please note: When we have received your complete application form an overview on admission will be held by means of Skype.
Before we I went to the Netherlands
Before I came to the Netherlands, I had to pass three english level exams in my own University in Bilbao. I passed them so I was able to aply for an Erasmus experience. I chose the Netherlands and the Katholieke Pabo Zwolle because my Erasmus coordinator recommended me.
Few months later, we had an skype interview with some teachers of the KPZ, so they had the opportunity to know more about our english level. I understand that is a good way to know about our speaking ability but I did not like it because I was really nervous and I did it a little bit bad.
It was dissapointing for me because I passed the other exams in my home country, so for me was too much. Many people were out of the program because of this interview, and I think it was too late to say no.
Info about the general things and the first weeks
The international Minor is a close program, so all international students are separated in class from the other Dutch students of the university. That has been good in one hand, but I would like to be together with more people. We have been 15 and three Austrian left in the middle of the course, so finally we have been 12 students. I really think that is too less, and I expected more from this point.
The first week was the welcome week, and we really did a lot of things, and that was wonderful. We introduced ourselves and also the teachers present themselves to us. Then, we went all together to Ice Skating, which was really amazing and we had the opportunity to know more each other and also the teachers. We also played typical Dutch games and did a tour through Zwolle to know more about the city with the Eudaimon students group.
Some British students were also in KPZ the first week, and we spent some time with them, which was also nice because we had the opportunity to know more new people.
About the courses:
1) English language (1 ECTS)
The objective of this course revolves around writing and presenting an academic paper in English in which your own written work will play a pivotal role. This very short course of 4 lessons focuses both on development of academic writing skills and strenghtening presentation skills.
2) Culture and Society ( 4 ECTS)
The students ude their ecperience and the kknowledge theyhave mastered of Dutch history, culture, art and society as a tool to understand and explore their own and other societies. Moreover students are confronted witht the questoins in which way history, culture and society shape our cultural identity, our wy of being.
3) Pedagogics (5 ECTS)
We will examine reform pedagogy in all its aspects. We will see which concepts are still used today.
We wonder what a present day and future child need. We explore the new didactics and explore existing concepts which have caught on in the Netherlands.
4) Dutch language (3 ECTS)
This is a Dutch course for our class. We learn the basics of the language, for example to introduce ourselves, talk about our hobbies, colors, show someone the way, ect.
5) Coaching/Counselling and tutorship (CCT / 3 ECTS)
The CCT is different from other modules, since most of the content is not definite yet.
There will be time for teambuilding activities and for personal coaching. Moreover students will be prepared for the practical training.
6) DRAMU (Drama and Music) (2 ECTS)
Starting with rhythm activities, movement and finishing with songd for children we learn to understand the meaning of rhythm, melody and harmony. All native songs will be produces on seet music and recorded ona CD.
7) Project week "Randstad" (2 ECTS)
During the semester we will take part in a prject week and a number of cultural activities. In this week (in Amsterdam and Den Haag) we will visit a number of cultural and social institutions.
8) Research (5 ECTS)
The research modules offer a good method to examime educational reform. During practical training we will be at school where we will do our research.
9) Teaching practise (4 ECTS)
This is the main and for me the most important part of the whole semester. I am in Heerde (small village next to Zwolle) in a Jenaplan school. I have to teach at least 26 lessons. I will see the idea of Jenaplan in a practical way.
10) Teacher in Europe student conference (1 ECTS)
Students learn in an international environment how to design a project under Erasmus + and to complete a final proposal.
The University organised a good accomodation for us. It is a little bit outside from the city center on a camping place. We have a sort of "bungalows". They are small houses with everything we need. The sleeping rooms are quite small but it is enough! Here on the camping place are 10 other people from Erasmus, and so we meet us often and doing something together. We pay about 375,- Euros per month for the rent.
In the Netherlands is is an obligation to have a bike! Without a bike you are totally lost. In the Netherlands are more bikes than cars, it is incredible. There are special ways for bikes everywhere, even in the roundabouts and cars have to stop for you. We have to drive about 30 minutes to University with our bikes.
But also the train in the Netherlands is really cool! Every 30 minutes there is a direct connection to the bigger cities (Amsterdam, Den Haag, Rotterdam, Groningen, ...) and it is quite cheap. But one thing is really good: the more people you are, the less is costs. So if you are a group of 10, you can go to any city you want for just 7 Euros - and this ticket is valid for the whole day (so back and forth).
Life in the Netherlands
Here in Zwolle are a lot of opportunities to do something, especially at night. Here are a lot of bars, discos and pubs. A bar called "The flying horse" is the most popular for students, it is always full! But it is not just good for drinking, you can get a meal for 2,50 Euros, which is really cheap.
When I came here I thought it was more expensive than in my country, but I was surprised because it is more oe less the same price. The most expensive thing is maybe the transport from my point of view.
In the city center are a lot of shops where you can buy clothes, something to eat and a lot of other stuff!
When you are here, you have to visit the bigger cities like Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Den Haag! They are absolutely wonderful and every city has its own charme!
About the teaching practice
I did my Teaching Practice in De Kubus school, which is located in Zwolle. The way was quite long, but it was nice to go there by bike all mornings (when the weather was nice, of course!). I really enjoyed a lot my teaching practice here, and it has been also a very big challenge for me because my pupils knew only speaking in Dutch and my lessons were in English.
I did it my best and the teacher helped me a lot with the language. The children were really nice, organized and responsible even if they were 4 and 5 years old! It was amazing to know more about Dutch education taking part directly in a Dutch school!
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