Word of the Day Wednesday: Today’s Word is ‘Extend’

By Nikita Duke Happy Word of the Day Wednesday, all. I was inspired for today’s Word of the Day at the front desk yesterday, when I asked a student if he would like to extend and he was unsure of what the word meant. As many of you know, this word is very important here at EC Boston…. we want you all to love your experience here and extend your stay! Extend is a verb that can have several different meanings, but today I will talk about only a couple of its more popular meanings. The first definition of extend is “to straighten or spread out (the body or a limb) at full length.” (via Mirriam-Webster Online Dictionary) Here is an example of extend used in a sentence with a photograph to help illustrate its meaning: “Nikita extended her arms.”   Another definition of this word is “to postpone (a starting or ending time) beyond the original limit.”  (via Mirriam-Webster Online Dictionary) Below is an example of extend used in a different way: “Doris’s last day at EC was this Friday, so she came to the Front Desk to extend her course until June.”   Learn more about English classes in Boston.  

Word of the Day Wednesday: Today’s Word is ‘icon’

By Jennifer Lacano Word of the Day: icon The word “icon” has several different uses in English. For some people, the most common definition is “a small picture on a computer screen that represents a program or function” (all definitions from http://www.learnersdictionary.com/). For example, here is the icon for Microsoft Word: And here is the icon for two of the most popular mobile apps:                “Icon” can also mean “a religious image in the Orthodox Christian church.” Here’s an example of a 6th Century icon: The meanings that people have been using a lot lately is “a person who is very successful and admired” or “a widely known symbol.” Why? Because David Bowie, who passed away (died) on Sunday, was both of these things. He was a very successful and admired musician and actor. His career lasted more than 40 years, and he had eight top 20 singles and 14 top 20 albums. He had hits in folk rock, art rock, glam rock, new wave, post-punk, dance, pop, soul, and many other genres (styles). Because his music ranged across so many different genres, it is difficult to say that he is a symbol of any particular kind of music. His style was constantly evolving, changing in order to challenge the norm, so I guess you could say that he was the symbol of individuality. For me, and for many others, he is and will always be the symbol or epitome (perfect example) of cool. It is hard for me to choose one favorite song, so here is one of my favorites: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMThz7eQ6K0 Thank you, Ziggy Stardust. You will be missed.   Learn more about taking a full immersion English course in Boston.  

Word of the Day Wednesday! Today’s Word: Tradition

by Molly Cox Tradition – n., “the handing down of statements, beliefs, legends, customs, information, etc., from generation to generation, especially by word of mouth or by practice” (Dictionary.com)   I chose tradition for this Wednesday’s word of the day because the holiday season (in America, the end of November through the 1st of January) is full of traditions. On Christmas, my family enjoys Christmas dinner together around 4pm, then we gather around the living room to sing Christmas carols and hymns. My mother’s side of the family is full of musical talent, and my uncle brings a new instrument every year. This is one of my favorite Christmas traditions because making music together as a family is calming, especially after helping to prepare a large dinner for 12+ people. But more importantly, the music brings us all together, with the occasional new-comer – boyfriends, girlfriends, new family and good friends. Happy holidays to all at EC Boston! Learn more about Intensive English courses in Boston.

Word of the Day Wednesday: Today’s Word is “Democrat”

By Molly Cox Happy Word of the Day Wednesday, everyone! Today’s word is democrat.   Last night was the 2015 Democratic debate in America, hence why today’s word of the day is Democrat! Democrat is a noun and is someone who supports the Democratic Party. Members of the Democratic Party have more liberal political views than Republicans, the other major political party in the U.S. who tend to have more conservative political views. Although political views differ within the party, liberal views tend to include the support of public health care, of more government involvement and greater support of economic equality. Watch the debate online to hear more about what the Democratic candidates discussed last night! Learn more about EC’s Boston English Center.

Word of the Day Wednesday: “Equinox”

By Molly Cox Today’s Word: Equinox Happy autumnal equinox! Today marks the first day of fall (also called autumn). The equinox happens twice a year, when the sun crosses the equator so that the day and night are approximately the same length all over the world (plus or minus a couple of minutes). The word equinox comes from the Latin word for equal and nox (the Latin word for night). The opposite of equinox is solstice (the summer solstice is the longest day of the year, and the winter solstice is the shortest of the year). In celebration of fall, Nikita and the Student Services team bought apples for the students – we hope you had one and celebrated with us! Learn English in Boston.

Word of the Day Wednesday! Today’s Word: Foliage (n)

By Bryn Keating Today’s Word: Foliage (n) /ˈfōl(ē)ij/ As summer comes to end in Boston, many people begin to dread the coming winter – the snow, the winds, and the bitter cold. But don’t let the cooling temperatures and early sunsets get you down; autumn, or fall, is a wonderful season to be in New England! One of the best parts of September and October is looking at the beautiful fall foliage, or leaves. Tree leaves are green during the warmer months because a chemical called chlorophyll helps them turn sunlight into fuel, a process called photosynthesis. In the winter there is not enough sunlight or water for photosynthesis, and the shortening days of autumn are a signal for the leaf to stop making food. The green chlorophyll disappears from the leaf, revealing bright yellow, red, and even purple colors. Looking at the fall foliage, or “leaf peeping”, is a popular New England activity. You can even book vacation and hotel packages to the countryside to look at the changing leaves. Many tourists travel to Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont to escape the cities and take in the wonder of nature. But don’t forget to look around at the trees right here in Boston – you may see some marvelous colors that can help combat the approaching winter blues! To learn more about where and when the foliage is changing, check out this foliage map: http://www.yankeefoliage.com/live-fall-foliage-map/ Learn English in Boston.

Kenta Mitarai of Japan Talks About His EC Experience!

Meet Kenta Mitarai of Japan! Kenta has been here a little over 7 months and has studied both Intensive and Semi-Intensive English. HE is also an active member of EC Boston’s Student Ambassador club! Here is what Kenta had to say about his EC experience. The reason why I chose Boston was due to the fact that Boston is a really good place to study. I feel like Boston is my second home. Anyway, let me talk about my experience at EC. It has already been 7 months since the time I came to Boston. First, I used to live in an EC apartment in Allston. It was a really big time for me when I arrived in Boston. I couldn’t speak English very well, so it was difficult for me to even have a basic conversation with a friend. Although my situation was exactly what I needed – everyone regarded me as a friend. What I really want to say is that the people who I’ve met here are extremely awesome. If they hadn’t helped me improve my English skills, I couldn’t speak English even now. Thank you to all of my friends who I met in EC! I strongly recommend studying here! Learn more about Boston English.

Class Field Trip to the North End!

Marina’s Elementary 2A class visited Boston’s historic North End and Columbus Park! Students practiced their conversation skills in English and learned new vocabulary while viewing and ordering desserts in Modern Pastry and walking around the neighborhood. The North End is also known as Boston’s “Little Italy,” and is characterized by it’s many Italian restaurants, bakeries and coffee shops and is the oldest neighborhood in Boston. It was first settled in the 1600’s by English Puritans and is thus home to many historical attractions such as Paul Revere’s house, Copp’s Hill Burying Ground, the Old North Church, or more. If you’re learning English at EC Boston, the North End is less than 10 minutes walking from the school and we encourage all of those who haven’t been to take a walk around, try a cannoli from Mike’s Pastry and soak in some Boston history! Learn more about Homestay Boston.

Today’s Word of the Day: Bellwether

Happy Word of the Day Wednesday! Today’s word of the day is brought to you by our Homestay Coordinator, Molly Cox! Bellwether : BEL – WEH – ther : noun : One that takes the lead or initiative; leader; indicator of trends Bellwether has an interesting origin. According to Merriam Webster, the word comes from shepherds. Shepherds hung bells around one sheep’s neck signifying ‘lead sheep’ (despite the fact that we think of sheep as followers). The sheep with the bell around its neck was called the bellwether, a combination of belle (an old English word for bell) and wether (an old English word for a castrated male sheep). It came to mean someone who takes the lead around the 13th century. Sentence examples: Johnny came to be known as the bellwether of the class after he got up and started teaching about the conditional when his teacher was running late. EC English might be considered a bellwether of ESL schools in Boston, helping students succeed in a global community by assisting students in achieving their English language goals. Use this word in class today! Learn more about learning English in Boston.

“Teachers are working hard. The staff are kind…” – Lanlee’s Testimonial

“I’ve studied at EC Boston for 8 months and I’m highly satisfied. My goal was to learn ‘American English’. Especially, Asian countries have their own expressions, and Asian students tend to translate them into English directly. I’ve been trying to remove my Korean English. Before I graduated from EC Boston, my advisor told me that my essay didn’t have Korean English. Thus, I think I almost achieved my goal here. Teachers are working hard. The staff are kind. My advisor has led me to right directions. If I got back to March, my first month, I would choose EC Boston again!”