Meet Pleun, our Belgian student of the month who is full of enthusiasm and newfound Love for working and living abroad.
Tell me a little bit about yourself and your background.
My name is Pleun, I am 17 years old and I live in a small city called Hamont in Belgium. I am in my last year of high school and I study Social Technical Sciences, which is a study where the human and his behaviour is the central part of everything. We have a lot of biology, physics and chemistry and we learn how to prepare meals.
What sparked your interest in Child Care?
That I could play with the children and teach them some new things.
What was the best moment of your trip?
The first Wednesday I was in my internship place, there was an unexpected inspection by authorities. So my friend and I were given the day off. I think you can imagine that we had a nice day in London.
What was it like working at Buckingham Montessori school?
It was an experience I will never forget! For me it didn’t feel like working, because everyone was so kind and helpful. When you saw the big smiles at the face of the children when we were playing with them in the garden or when we did activities with the children, those were some of the best moments in London. For me it was also a whole new experience because I had never worked in a school and especially not in a Montessori school! The vision they have about the learning process of the children is different from the one I know in Belgium.
What were your tasks?
I had a lot of tasks. Mostly fun tasks like playing with the children, preparing food and I got the opportunity to teach the children (and teachers) some Dutch words! I also needed to clean and wash the dishes but that was not a big problem for me, because you know that it helped the teachers enormously.
You were nominated because of your enthusiasm for the project and how quickly you adapted to various challenges. What drives you forward?
My biggest drive is that I am a very curious person and I want to see and know everything. I am not a person that comes out of her comfort zone very quickly, but during this trip I challenged myself a lot and I am definitely happy that I did that because it brought me many positive things.
How would you compare your work placement to your work or school back home?
The kindergardens in London have different ways for teaching the children than the kindergardens in Belgium, but they both do everything for the children.
How has this experience inspired you?
It inspired me that it is important to come out of your comfort zone and just be yourself, because only then can you fully enjoy every moment.
What have you learnt from the trip?
I have learnt so many things about Life in London. The typical food, how to use the tube, bus and trains, how friendly and helpful the people are, what a Montessori school is and working with young children,...
What have you found most exciting about working and living in a new country?
I have a lot of exciting things , I think that the most exciting thing for me is learning about a different culture like the people, food and Life on a normal day.
What are your plans for the future?
First I want to finish my studies and then I definitely want to go and see the world. I am sure that I will come back to London for a longer time and maybe stay there for a long period.
What would your advice be for students who are about to go on the Internship Programme?
Enjoy every moment because time flies when you are having fun ;)
Pleun visited London with our Internship Programme, a project eligible for funding from Erasmus+. We also arrange work experience projects in Dublin. Don't hesitate to contact us if you would like more information about what we do and how to get funding. Call a Country Manager today on +44 2084249424 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org