Testimonial of Najib Al- Labani

Najib started his EC experience on 17 March 2014, even though his stay with us was not for long, his experiences speaks volumes. Here is what Najib had to say:    – Najib Al-Labani, Yemeni “My best memories of EC Cape Town must be my time spent in my class. I enjoyed the work and meeting the students and I really enjoyed my first class teacher, she was the best. During my stay in Cape Town I met quite a few new friends from Italy, Libya and all over the world. It was very exciting for me to be in one place and be able to communicate with all the different people with the different personalities and hobbies. I liked to walk in Cape Town and see as much as I can from the beautiful mountains to the ocean. The views were very nice and the people of Cape Town were always happy and nice. I will miss all the fun activities the most and the ocean. I will miss all the places that Cape Town has got for me to see. At EC I will miss the teachers the most they are the people that help us to get to the levels that we need to be. EC Cape Town was a lovely place for me.” For more information about the English courses offered at EC Cape Town simply click here.

IELTS General Information

   IELTS or ‘International English Language Testing System’ is one of the world’s leading tests of English for higher education, immigration and employment. The IELTS examinations are well under way in its Fifth month for the year 2014. Candidates are currently preparing for the 17 May 2014 examination, we at EC Cape Town would like to wish them all the best of luck! IELTS is an international examination that is run by British Council. The exam takes place once a month and is divided into two sections namely: General Training: For Immigration purposes. Academic Training: For University application purposes. When registering for this exam please make sure that you as candidate are already aware of which exam you wish to take. EC Cape Town is not only a Testing Centre for IELTS examinations; we also offer exclusive IELTS preparation courses that will improve your chances of getting the scores you require.   The IELTS examination dates are as follows: 17 May 2014 21 June 2014 19 July 2014 16 August 2014 20 September 2014 18 October 2014 22 November 2014 06 December 2014 Please note all exam dates are fixed and only takes place once a month. For more information please feel free to contact Rifqah Brenner at rifqahbrenner@ecenglish.com, or feel free to contact EC Cape Town.  

IELTS vs General English

Many students come to ask the Academic Department about the IELTS class and how it’s different to the General English classes. With the help of Nadine Coletta from Germany, our ADOS explains the differences: Our IELTS course is designed to prepare the students to write the IELTS exam. It is very different to the general English classes in that it focuses on Academic English, or the English used at university. You can expect to be exposed to subjects like Sociology, Science, Architecture and History. We recommend that students spend at least a few weeks in Upper Intermediate before joining the class, so that they feel confident in their English ability. The IELTS class is not designed to simply improve your English ability, but rather it teaches you how to get the best possible score in the exam. The course is best suited to students who need to achieve a particular score, either for a job or in order to enter university. Here’s what Nadia had to say: During my journey here at EC Cape Town, I had the opportunity to join the Advanced class and the IELTS class. I immediately recognized that the classes were totally different. You join the General English class without any pressure and this class helps to improve your English. Depending on the teacher and the number of students in the class, it is up to you to decide what to talk about and which exercises to do. Everybody has a different personal goal to achieve, as opposed to the IELTS class. There, every student has the same aim! The lessons are very structured. You speak about specific topics and get exactly prepared in how to pass the exam. And you get an official certificate, which you can attach to your CV.  The IELTS class is … Read more

Visa Extensions

For students who decide to extend their stay with us at EC Cape Town, it is likely that you will need a visa extension. Who better to ask than our resident visa expert, Zubeida who can be found on the first floor. From Zubeida Harris / Registrar What is a Visa Extension? When to extend? How to extend? There are two options: Extending current Tourist / Visitors Visa (maximum extension: 3 months) Extending Student Visa (maximum extension: 1 – 1.5 years) I am available to help assist students with visa extensions. Service I provide: Completing the application form Student handing me all the relevant documents to extend I check and make the necessary copies before I send students to Home Affairs to extend their visa Click here for detailed information on applying for a Visa in South Africa 

Watcha Up To..? Cristina Tarradellas

What happens to our students once they’ve left our doors for the last time and fly off into the horizon? Many of our students have gone on to do some pretty interesting things with their lives, and studying English as well as the overall experience of living in a foreign country, has a great deal to do with their success. “Watcha Up To?” showcases past students and have them share with us what they’re doing at the moment. In this segment, we travel to Barcelona and say HOLA! to Cristina! ~Sheetal Makhan / AYC Watcha Up To? Hello, My name is Cristina and I’m from Barcelona. In June of 2012 I went alone to travel to several countries in southern Africa, but when I visited Cape Town,  I fell in love with this city. So, when I finished my trip, I went back to live for a while in Cape Town. I started to study at EC School because a friend of mine from Barcelona recommended it. He told me that EC is so good.  I was in Pre-Intermediate level for two months. I learned a lot in school, I met very good friends. After five months in Africa, I went back to Spain. I ‘m currently looking for a job, but in my country there is a great crisis. So maybe I will return to Cape Town because I think that it is a wonderful place to live. Cristina was a General English student at EC Cape Town


English for Life Served with a Steaming Cup of Coffee Using “used to” We use “used to” to speak about things we did in the past, but don’t do anymore and also to describe states that are no longer true. I used to smoke 20 cigarettes a day. She used to enjoy swimming in the ocean. ~Nicoletta / DOS Did you know? EC has free English Lessons online  

Friendly Host Family Reminder

From Rifqah Brenner / Accommodation Officer There is no better way to learn English than living with a typical South African host family. Many of our families are South African and always welcome students from all walks of life with open arms. Most of our families work exclusively with EC and are always happy to assist us or our students when need be. Here’s a friendly reminder of some guidelines to follow while living with our families: Please be sure to let them know if you expect to miss a meal, …or if you will be home late Offer to pay for something if you break or damage anything Please don’t entertain any overnight visitors One of our students who thoroughly enjoyed his stay with the Jassiem family Click here for more information on EC Cape Town’s Accommodation

Watcha Up To..? Rafaela Ribeiro

What happens to our students once they’ve left our doors for the last time and fly off into the horizon? Many of our students have gone on to do some pretty interesting things with their lives, and studying English as well as the overall experience of living in a foreign country, has a great deal to do with their success. “Watcha Up To?” showcases past students and have them share with us what they’re doing at the moment. I remember Rafaela so fondly. She always participated in class discussions and brought a lovely sense of energy to those around her. I’m delighted that this lovely lady graces our blog in today’s feature.! ~Sheetal Makhan / AYC Watcha Up To? Hi, my name is Rafaela and I’m from São Paulo, Brazil. I started at EC Cape Town in July 2013 at Pre-Intermediate level and finished at Intermediate level. When I arrived I was try improved my English, and in my first week I was a little confused, because I was want speak English. But in my first week I was made some friends in my classroom and they help me improved my English. My teachers help me a lot too. This experience makes me other person, because I learned new things, new peoples, new cultures. Now I’m have other mind, without prejudices. EC Cape Town was for me like a mother and I felt great there. I made friends around the world and we talked today. The best experience for my life and I recommended EC and Cape Town city is amazing! I just have to thank you for meeting wonderful people. Rafaela was a Cape Town General English 20 student

Abdul – Our Boxing Champion!

by Sheetal Makhan / AYC For someone who initially thought that boxing “was a little bit weird”, it may come as a surprise that 22yr old Abdulwahed “Abdul” Abdalah recently won his first boxing match! The Business Management student from Libya is currently completing his English course at at EC Cape Town. He’s been in Cape Town for almost a year and prides himself on living and enjoying life to the max. It was during high school that Abdul took a keen interest in the sport and has been training for five years now. “It makes me calm. It’s like a stress relief,” he says. Abdul joined a local boxing club where the coach is a four-time boxing champion. He is confident that his techniques improved during his 11-month training in Cape Town. “Winning a gold medal out of Libya is an honour for me,” says Abdul and goes on to say that he will continue training when he goes back to Libya. Boxing was not a mainstream sport in Libya, forcing those interested in it to train underground. However, after the country’s revolution, there has been a revival and clubs have started to re-emerge. Abdul says that while his family had some (reasonably understandable) reservations about his involvement, they did support him and are very proud of him…as are his friends! Friends of various nationalities came out to support Abdul at his match and have nothing, but praise and pride for him. His advice to those who wish to pursue boxing? Abdul maintains that the sport is “good for the soul, mind and fitness. Not only does it strengthen your heart and broaden your mind, but it keeps you young!” While Abdul towers over many of his peers (and teachers) he has a very soft nature and actually comes … Read more

Proud of our Bookworm, Yalcin Kalay!

by Sheetal Makhan / AYC   I recently received this message from past Turkish student, Yalcin Kalay: “Hi my dear teacher, how are you? I wanna give you a good news. In Turkey there was an Oxford Book Reading Competition between 150 private schools. My school was in that competition and I came fourth in Turkey! And they will put my pics on the billboards in Turkey!” Of course, having taught him last year, I jumped for joy! With the help of his teacher, Yalcin entered a book reading competition whereby students had to read books from the Oxford Bookworm Series. They had to find three interesting scenes in the story and had to write about why they found it interesting. Finally, the student had to recommend the story, backing it up with reasons why friends would enjoy it. Juries will choose ten summaries from each part of Turkey, sending the best ones to Istanbul. Finally, they will be rated and a finalist will be chosen. This is Yalcin’s winning piece – which earned him fourth place in Turkey for the competition! All of us at EC Cape Town are extremely proud of you and so happy that we were part of your “English journey!” Rabbit Proof Fence Review by Yalcin Kalay Rabbit Proof Fence is Dorris Pilkington Garimara’s novel. It is published by Oxford University Press and it is among many other factual books in Oxford Bookworms reader series. It is based on a true story. The story is set in Western Australia during the 1930s. What I have learnt from this book is 20th century was a colonial one with an ill oriented  and disastrous mentality where some of the people either because of their colour, race or religion claimed that they were superiour over ‘’others’’. It was … Read more