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An International Professional Experience in Prato

International Professional Experience in Prato
Prato schools welcome pre-service teachers from Melbourne

Early in January, Monash students from the Faculty of Education arrived to undertake placements in seven local schools. Students studying early years, primary and secondary education courses were allocated places in Prato to allow them to apply and expand their knowledge in an international setting.

While our students see some similarities between schools in Australia and in Italy (e.g., generally traditional approaches to teaching and learning, and sometimes limited access to technology), they also have the chance to experience cultural diversity and differences. Teaching and break times vary, different programs and activities are available, and more than 115 nationalities live together in the city. Our students quickly learn to develop solutions to work around language differences. This is all part of the experience and such a placement helps in developing creative and resourceful thinking – important skills for future careers.

Greta Joseph is undertaking her placement at local scientific secondary school, ‘N. Copernico’. She said: “This has been an amazing experience - I have been able to immerse myself in a new culture while further developing my pedagogical knowledge. Although at times the experience can be challenging, especially with language barriers, it has given me the opportunity to work on my communication and problem solving skills. One of the best parts is living and working with other like-minded pre-service teachers from Monash and to be able to share our experiences of both placement and our weekend travels around Italy.”

You can find out more about the International Professional Experience on our website.