Everyone should have the opportunity to find a hobby, retrain and upskill, follow their passions or fulfil their potential. That's why Oxfordshire Adult Learning remove obstacles and provide flexible learning options in communities across Oxfordshire, for all types of interests and whatever your personal circumstances may be.
There are plenty of positive reasons to study part-time, whether it's enjoying the social side of learning something totally new with other people, or getting the sense of accomplishment that comes with a finished project.
Our learners enjoy their courses so much, that 92% of them would consider trying another course with Oxfordshire Adult Learning.
We run part-time courses in 24 venues, including community halls, schools and at our main college campuses.
We work in partnership with more than 200 organisations, charities and businesses across the county, so we can deliver more opportunities to more people, especially to those who need it most.
From well-being workshops for carers, to specialist courses for adults with learning difficulties; we have dedicated teams providing services that benefit everyone, helping people to make life-changing steps forward in their education and empowering others to give back to their local communities.
I originally trained as a designer and there was an emphasis on being able to illustrate and express one’s ideas. On leaving college, I worked for an architectural practice for a few years and alongside designing interiors, I took on graphic work and visualisation.
About twenty-five years ago, I discovered oil paints and I have never looked back. It is a beautiful medium that is so expressive. I have put on several solo exhibitions and am constantly looking to develop my art.
With the classes that I teach, I try to bring some of my insight and enthusiasm for the discipline, from the basics of drawing and painting technique, through to developing individual styles and designing compositions.
It can be very rewarding to involve oneself in a creative activity and as well as acquiring a new skill, opening a learner up to being able to enjoy the work of other artists, past and present.
Having studied Fine Art at Durban Art School in South Africa, I started work as a 'drawer' in an advertising agency in Cape Town, London and Los Angeles.
My early career included working for a Greek publisher illustrating a series of books teaching English, studying Film Animation at CalArts, California, before meeting Ron Heapy at Oxford University Press who commissioned the award-winning and multi-million selling series of 'Winnie and Wilbur', soon to be a TV series on Channel 5!
As I frequently give drawing workshops at libraries, schools and museums, the invitation to teach fledgling adult illustrators the art and craft of picture books seemed a natural development of promoting my passion.
The workshops are conducted as an editorial meeting, where students are shown how to design and illustrate three double page spreads with exploratory sketches and pencil roughs. By the end, students gain an understanding of the difficult but rewarding creative process involved when designing and illustrating a picture book.
I started teaching Greek twenty years ago in northern Greece, with a small private language school before moving on to a bigger institution teaching foreign language to adults, which I found really inspiring.
The main aim of my courses is always to enable learners to get a good grasp of the language and communicate in a variety of everyday situations, both predictable or less predictable. This could range from ordering food in a restaurant, understanding directions or buying things to more complicated topics such as understanding a newspaper article or talking about a book or a film.
Although all four skills are practised, the emphasis lies on communication. I always try to have variety in my classes, with activities that promote interaction between learners in a fun way and with a lot of cultural input through media, songs and literature. There is more to learning Greek than just the language!
Apart from learning how to communicate in another language, which is the main aim, the course gives the learners the opportunity to discover and become more familiar with another culture, as well as to socialise and enjoy being in a group of people who share the same interests as them.