Selection and training days for monitors

In this article we tell you all the details of this year's call for applications

The monitors' conference is one of the most important events for the English Summer S.A. team, as we meet all the staff to train ourselves with new activities and to finalise the details for the summer camps.

Last weekend, from the 10th to the 11th of May, around 150 participants came to our house in Prades for the selection and training of the monitors for this season 2024. We learned new dynamics and games, we also acquired different techniques and skills for working with children and teenagers in summer camps.

If you want to know all the details of the day, read on!

Friday 10 May

Welcome and presentations

At 19:00 the participants started to arrive for check-in. This inaugural moment is always moving and full of expectations, as the veteran monitors meet again and the aspiring monitors arrive with the illusion of discovering what the Conference has in store for them.

The welcome dinner marked the beginning of a meeting where new friendships were forged. Afterwards, all the staff went to the theatre to introduce the organisers of the event and get to know the programme of the event.

The candidates to become monitors had the opportunity to interact with the rest of the participants, sharing their experiences as leisure time educators through short presentations, where they told peculiar and funny anecdotes.

Ice breaking activities

Once the presentations in the theatre were over, they did a variety of Ice Breaking dynamics and activities designed to lose their embarrassment. They also did team building activities to create a united and motivated team.

They explored topics such as conflict resolution, creating a safe and positive environment for the young campers, as well as techniques to foster collaboration, teamwork and emotional management. To end the evening, they enjoyed music in the disco room with the iconic dances that characterise our camps.

Saturday 11th May

Formation and lecture

At 9am they had breakfast together to get as much energy as possible, as a full day of training and activities awaited them. They started with the instructor's handbook for the candidates, while the veteran monitors got to know some of the new features of this year, for example:

Paint in the Dark is a neon painting workshop for teenagers to unleash their inner artist and create a work of art... in the dark! They could also demonstrate their climbing skills in the horizontal climbing wall or immerse themselves in an immersive experience in the Astronomical twilight room, performing an obstacle course with lasers. These are some of the new activities that our summer camp participants will be able to enjoy.

Afterwards, Escola EFA gave a talk on emotional management and tools on how to combat frustration, focusing on explaining the importance of creating an inclusive environment for all children. The future monitors learned strategies to identify and deal with situations that may generate frustration in the participants, especially those related to stereotypes or traditional roles.

The importance of building self-esteem and self-confidence was emphasised, as well as providing tools for constructive conflict resolution. In addition, the importance of fostering empathy and mutual respect between boys and girls, promoting collaboration and teamwork regardless of gender, was highlighted.

Monitors were encouraged to be role models in terms of egalitarian attitudes and behaviour, and to be aware of any situation of discrimination or exclusion in order to deal with it in an appropriate and empathetic way. It was a very interesting presentation for the team to understand first hand the protocol of action in the educational field and to be able to apply this knowledge in their daily work with their students.

There was also a briefing to teach the basic human resources aspects that a monitor should take into account. In addition, the director of studies explained how the English classes work and what was expected of the instructors: professionalism, speaking English and enthusiasm for the project.

Activity rotation

During the afternoon, all the monitors were introduced to the new activities they will be teaching their participants this summer. These activities are designed to promote empathy, cooperation, assertive communication, leadership, integrity, creativity and friendship.

They also did exercises and workshops that helped participants learn how to act in risky or stressful situations, address sensitive issues with children, and find creative and collaborative ways to solve puzzles.

Goodbye, but… See you soon!

It was time for the farewell... With a closing ceremony at 19h the management team thanked the participants for their attendance and explained the next steps in the candidate selection process. We received very positive feedback from the participants, who shared their impressions and feelings. All in all, the Monitor Days were a success. Our monitors not only acquired new skills and techniques for working with children, but also enjoyed an enriching and fun-filled experience with their colleagues.

This event reflects English Summer's commitment to continuous and quality training for monitors, as well as our dedication to providing the best possible experience for the children and teenagers who attend our summer camps.

After a weekend full of learning, exciting activities and laughter shared with many participants motivated to give their best this summer, we can only say: We look forward to seeing all of you!

Book your summer camp 2024.