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What is in This Issue?

Education's purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.

(Malcolm Forbes publisher & author)

Most of us go through it. Many of us complain about it. Those who don’t have it wish they did. What makes an education so special? Well, we don’t claim to have all the answers (typical teacher!-Ed.), but what we can do is show you some aspects of what education means in the UK and Poland.

If education is so important why is it that different countries adopt different systems? How much do you actually know about the British educational system? Well, we have a description that will show you all the ins and outs of how the UK has chosen to educate its younger generations. We also give you the chance to compare it to the Polish system. Maybe you could show it to your classes and think about the benefits and drawbacks of each one.

We have an article about teaching language in school in the UK. French is currently the most popular but that hasn’t always been the case and how have the UK’s minority languages managed to compete with the predominance of English.

We decided when talking about education the best thing would be to get the opinions of some of those who are going through it right now. So we’ve interviewed seven Polish students to see what they had to say about the education they are receiving. If you yourself are school, do their perceptions match yours, and if you are a teacher take the time to read their ideas and reflect on your own classroom

To complement this article we have the views of some Polish teachers of English. The author Gail Godwin said “Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three quarters theatre.” How far do you agree with this? Read this article and see what our contributors have to say.

What do Poles think about British schools? Have you ever wondered what goes on in a Polish kindergarten? What do teachers really think about the job? Why do generations of Brits shudder at the mention of "school dinners"? What opportunities are available to people starting their education later in life?

University education is increasingly desirable but how is it organised in Britain and more importantly who is going to pay for it. We have two articles looking at these points. Would you like the same system in your country or can you think of a better system?

On a more light-hearted note we have some quizzes for you to try. How much do you know about education in film and literature and another asking how dedicated you are to teaching. Can you stop teaching once you get home or are you always in teaching mode?

In language corner Mrs A is once again having trouble with her children. Or is it her children having trouble with Mrs A.  Read all about it in Mrs A’s diary as well as pick up on some education based words and phrases.

If your desire for knowledge about education is not satisfied by our offerings then have a look at our website review. The Parent centre www.parentcentre.gov.uk is the UK’s department of education’s site for all aspects of what is going in British education.

So read our articles, take part in our quizzes and try out our classroom activities. Remember school lasts a short time but learning lasts a lifetime.


Produced in Poland by British Council © 2005. The United Kingdom's international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We are registered in England as a charity.