We recruit our own instructors and train them in the Babylangues® teaching method. This provides us with genuine educators who have the necessary skills to deal with the challenges of early learning. The key to success lies in the relationship forged between the English teacher and the child. If the bond is successful the child will want to express himself in English. This is why we insist that our instructors meet the child before sessions commence, in order to ensure that they are compatible.
The selection of our instructors follows a rigorous procedure: we recruit people with educational skills, who are reliable and adaptable, demonstrate excellent communication skills with children and can offer recent and relevant experience. Our initial training ensures that instructors are fully ready to start. Thereafter, regular training sessions provide support and back up as well as new material appropriate to the child’s level of progress.
Prior to organising job interviews, our human resources department checks that all candidates comply with the five following criteria, which constitute essential preliminaries to any interview:
They are all native speakers: English speakers, Spanish speakers, etc. Although mostly women, some are men and correspond particularly well to the needs of families with young boys. They are usually aged between 22 and 30, but our recruitment is primarily based on personal qualities and skill set rather than on specific profiles. Babylangues instructors are predominantly university graduates, with BA or BSc degrees from their countries of origin. They usually come to France to complete their postgraduate studies (Masters or PhD), to improve their level of French (enrolling at the Sorbonne or the Alliance Française), or because they have decided to settle in France.
They are all experienced in childcare and have a common desire to share their native language using their skills of language learning and teaching.
Our initial training module deals with child safety in the context of their daily life, and is attended by all our instructors prior to starting work with your family. Although our instructors all have previous experience in childcare, we carefully review the fundamental issues revolving around your child’s safety in and around the home. We reiterate the elementary rules of good conduct, such as punctuality, propriety, as well as basic hygiene (e.g. “always wash your hands when you get home”). We make sure that our instructors can always be contacted when they are looking after your child (mobile phones switched on and batteries fully charged at all times). We meticulously review all the potential hazards which are present in children’s daily lives (e.g. “always hold hands in the street”, “never leave a child alone in a kitchen or a bathroom”). We conclude by stressing the importance of observing the child’s general well-being, and being attentive to any complaints or unusual behaviour.
So much more than just a briefcase full of activities, serving as proof of educational value, the training offered to our instructors remains at the heart of our organisation and forms the very essence of our activity. A second language cannot be acquired by passive osmosis, by merely spending a few hours a week in the company of a native speaker. This is why we have designed a specific training programme that carefully targets the issues governing language transmission. Babylangues started out with language workshops for children aged 12 months and over, in little groups, teaching English through play. Of course, these group workshops are still running in Paris and Bordeaux, but places are at a premium. Workshops fulfill a double role, as while children are being taught, new educational material is being created. The Babylangues group workshops are a fairyland of invention for the development of new educational activities. They are without doubt the very essence of our entire expertise, and an expression of a unique savoir faire.
This careful and meticulous work with young children, which turns language into a game and living it into a performance, has been re-worked, adapted and formalised in our training sessions so that each member of our educational team can in turn impart all of Babylangues’s acquired expertise to your child. Every language game or activity used with your child will have been developed, tested on children in real-life, modified and optimised to suit the varying levels of understanding and expression.
We know there is no such thing as teaching in a bubble, so Babylangues provides a progressive educational programme, one in which every member of our educational team plays an active role in the teaching which they dispense. Our training deals with the down-to-earth reality of language learning for children: how to motivate a child to learn after a long day at school, how to encourage the memorisation of idiomatic expressions, or even how to encourage a child to reproduce the language they have learnt in their day-to-day life. The aim of these training sessions is to address real teaching issues, and widen the repertoire of activities, games and songs available. Babylangues does not see teaching as an solitary occupation. Quite the contrary, we encourage our educational team to share and interact.