my name is Kathi and I am originally from (East) Germany, however, almost all of my adult life has been spent in Scotland and northern England. I started off training to be an English teacher in East Germany, but due to the turbulent developments there at the time I came to Edinburgh in the early 90s to complete my degree, finishing with a First Class MA (hons) in English Language, despite being the only non-native speaker on the course. Having met my husband I decided to stay in Britain and I followed my degree with a Post-graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), becoming qualified to teach German and Russian, although I then went on to teach German and French at secondary school. I gave up school teaching when our second child came along, giving private lessons from home instead. Later on I started a German club at my children’s primary school and I also taught German to three-year-olds at preschool.
We have been hosting guests from abroad for a number of years and I have helped many of them with their English in day-to-day exchanges over cake, dinner or a camp fire in the garden. Recently I completed a TEFL course (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) and have enjoyed getting back to my original dream of teaching English!
Although I am not a native speaker as such, people are always surprised to discover that I am German. I am fully bilingual to the extent that I even correct my (British) husband’s English on a regular basis! I believe that I have an advantage over native speakers in teaching English as I have learnt the language from the outside in, complete with grammar and tenses, and I can appreciate where English language learners are coming from! Having lived in Britain for more than twenty years I have “structural” as well a colloquial or “intuitive” knowledge of the language. I also have a keen ear for accents.
I love gardening and sitting out in the garden in the evenings with a glass of wine to listen to the birds and watch the bats. I really enjoy sewing, having a diploma in curtain making and soft furnishings, and I am particularly interested in patchwork and quilting. I keep chickens in the back garden, so we always have fresh eggs! I enjoy baking and cooking. If I get the chance, I like to read and watch films in our home cinema. At weekends, we like to go for walks with the family or visit local castles, country houses, beaches and gardens.
I have been police-checked and can supply copies of the relevant documents if required. Please see below for my qualifications.