Merhaba! This is Mira again. I have already been in İzmir for six months now, and since my last blog a lot of things have happened. First of all, I could talk about the mid-term training in Rize, that we received from the Turkish national agency. Rize is about 1,500 kilometers away from İzmir, on the Black Sea coast. I chose to go there by bus and it was really a nice experience for me to cross the country by land instead of taking the plane, to enjoy the various landscapes of Türkiye. We were, like in Afyonkarahisar (see episode 1), hosted in a sumptuous hotel. ESC volunteers from all across Türkiye were gathered here to exchange about their experiences, to get useful information and try to solve the problems that could have occurred.

Regarding the workshops, I have, for some time now, been doing a French conversation club, which is quite challenging to prepare because of the different levels of the participants (some are almost fluent, others are beginners); therefore, it requires a lot of flexibility. But I enjoy helping participants to improve their language skills and showing them different aspects of France. Now, I started doing another French conversation club, with mainly advanced speakers, which is really nice because it allows us to do a lot of different activities and have good conversations. The second workshop I have is an English one in a center called Sakin Mekan Agora, with mostly beginner participants, and only women (why only women are coming, I don’t know). We have to adapt to different levels and find ways to communicate without, often, a common language. But our level of Turkish increases just like their English gets better and it makes things easier. I really admire the motivation of our participants and I really like this group and this place. I also started to do English conversation clubs in a high school, and it is really fun and interesting to be now on the “teacher” side compared to the student’s one, even though we don’t want our participants to see us as teachers. We try our best to make it pleasant and fun for the students who attend these workshops, to allow them to practice their English in a free of stress and free of pressure situation. I really appreciate their enthusiasm and motivation.

As a participant this time, I also attended the Turkish conversation clubs provided by Pi Youth Association, as an addition to the Turkish classes that we receive from students of Ege University. Regarding these classes, we passed a test at the beginning of the year assessing that we reached an A1 level. I also attended one time events organized by Pi Youth Association, such as movie nights (where I discovered cinema masterpieces like “G.o.r.a”), a Christmas event or visiting a museum. Finally, I tried to discover as many things as possible from İzmir during my free time. I visited the neighboring towns of Çesme and Urla, hiked in the nature reserve of Homeros Vadisi, visited museums and mosques around town, and went to several concerts and theater plays. I also met great people here, and I am happy everyday that I chose to come to İzmir.

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