Global LT Teacher Spotlight: Say "Hallo" to Pascale!

Female language training teacher wearing glasses and smiling

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The dedication of the teachers at Global LT is truly incredible. The passion and knowledge they bring to their lessons every day is something you’ll never be able to get from an app. Meet Pascale, one of Global LT’s Dutch teachers.

Pascale was born and raised in the Netherlands, where she currently lives with her husband and daughter. She’s been teaching for over 15 years, both English and Dutch, and has been with Global LT for just over a year as a Dutch teacher.

Her passion for teaching began in 2007 when she traveled to Ghana for three months, visiting an orphanage and working at a school. She fell in love and enjoyed teaching there, commenting, “Teaching in that environment gave me so much energy.”

While in Ghana doing volunteer work, she met some people who owned a football academy who were looking for someone to teach English. She jumped at the opportunity to use her teaching and art history background to work at the academy, saying, “I’d rather do something and regret it later than regret not doing it at all. If things didn’t work out in Ghana, I could always come back [to the Netherlands].”

While teaching in Ghana, Pascale met her husband, got married, and they had their daughter. They lived in Ghana for many years, came back to the Netherlands for about three years, and then headed back to Ghana, just recently returning to the Netherlands about three months ago.

While in Ghana, Pascale learned that there is quite a large Dutch community with a Dutch language school in the capital. Wanting a change and to return to speaking her native language, Pascale decided to take a job at the school, teaching Dutch language classes.

Because the Dutch children were mostly the children of expats, Pascale, an expat herself, found she could connect with them easily. The ages that she taught ranged from toddlers to middle schoolers. The children would attend the regular international school during the day, and after school, they would come to the Dutch school for language lessons.

But Pascale’s teaching wasn’t just limited to children. There was also a large population of adults in Ghana wanting to take the civic integration exam to move to the Netherlands, and Pascale started doing Dutch language tutoring one-on-one to help them prepare for the exam.

In 2014, Pascale and her husband started a foundation in Ghana to support underprivileged children in the village in their community by offering them an after-school educational program. Initially, it was for middle and high school students to come to after their regular schooling for homework assistance, tutoring help, or to use the computers. They started the foundation with the help of crowdfunding and donors and eventually were able to purchase a piece of land to build the center. And through volunteers, the foundation has been running for almost ten years.

Pascale commented, “This was in a very, very rural area with no electricity. A lot of children didn’t go to school, especially girls. So we tried to make our own little change, at least for the small group in our village, giving them the opportunity to go to school. You can make an impact with teaching, even if it’s small scale.”

Pascale began teaching Dutch with Global LT last year while she was still in Ghana. Not only did it allow her to speak her own language regularly again (the only Dutch she was really speaking was with her daughter, as her husband speaks English and she was teaching English), but she could relate to her students because she was also in a different country with a different language.

After moving back to the Netherlands, Pascale admitted to feeling a bit of culture shock being back in her home country. “I noticed, especially being outside the Netherlands, you get more aware of the Dutch culture, but you don’t necessarily see what is typical Dutch while you’re inside. Living abroad makes the culture special, and when you are back in it, it feels normal.”

Pascale doesn’t really have lesson plans for her students. Because many of her students are non-traditional learners, she likes to adapt lessons to their daily lives and weave in topics they address. “What I really like about teaching with Global LT is the flexibility – not just with the program but also for the students. They can really decide their learning pace and what they want to learn. My lessons are mostly very practical, focusing on speaking and listening, but we also address grammar and everything you need to build up your language to a higher level.”

One of her students had recently run a marathon in the U.S., so they talked about her trip to the U.S. and the marathon during a Dutch lesson. And because it happened in the past, they could practice using the past tense in Dutch. “We talk about their own experience and add in topics instead of just using a book – it helps students make [the language] more relatable to their life, and it helps them remember.”

In addition to teaching virtually with Global LT, Pascale also works as a Dutch teacher at a school in the Netherlands with mostly refugee/asylum-seeking children from ages 12-18, giving her a great balance of in-person and virtual teaching.

Not only is Pascale appreciated by Global LT, but her students also have a lot of kind things to say about her. Here are some of the messages we’ve received about Pascale’s teaching: 

“I have started my lessons with Pascale, and it is going really well. She is a great teacher and also very flexible with her approach.”

“Yes, I am really satisfied with the lesson. Pascale is great teacher and we have very interesting lessons.”

“My lessons with Pascale are going very well, and she's been very responsive and adaptive to my needs.”

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This blog post was written by Megan Tully, Marketing Manager.

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