Maximize your time…like Marina!

by Sheetal Makhan (AYC) It’s very easy to find ourselves “stuck in a rut” (to be bored). For some students, routine becomes school-home-school-home. I have said this repeatedly to our students: Cape Town is your classroom! All you need to do is: Open your eyes. Open your ears. Open your mind. One student who did this was Marina Albertini, who is back home in Brazil. I spent some time chatting to Marina about her time here in Cape Town. I was interested to hear about her story, especially when I learned that she was took saxophone lessons. It caught my attention because I thought it was a wonderful way of really “getting out there” and immersing herself in activities during her stay in South Africa. I hope many other students will read Marina’s story and follow suit. Marina has been playing Pop Rock for about seven years. She took music lessons when she was 18 years old, but not for a long time. When she arrived in Cape Town, she was already able to play the piano and guitar, but it was in Cape Town that she started learning saxophone. Like her father, her interest in music started out as a hobby. She soon found it to be a form of expression without using words. She says that she became a bit of an introvert after losing her grandmother. “Music was the one thing I knew how to do,” says Marina, who actually writes her own music with her band back in Brazil. She came to Cape Town to take a break before starting university. Although she always loved the saxophone, she never thought of pursuing it further. She wanted to maximize her time while studying in South Africa and event bought the instrument before taking lessons, which lasted for … Read more

Watcha Up to..? Pamela Floriano

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. Today we say a warm “hello to Pamela from Brazil. She describes her feeling about learning English the same way I describe what it feels like to be a teacher and to see development with my students on a daily basis. It’s simply MAGICAL 🙂 ~Sheetal Makhan / AYC    Hello, I´am Pamela Floriano from Porto Alegre, south of Brazil. I had been in Cape Town for six months. I started at EC Cape Town in February 2012 at Beginner level and finished at Intermediate level in August. When I arrived in Cape Town I couldn’t introduce myself in English. After two or three weeks I was speaking with my classmates. It is so amazing.. is like magic – one day you don’t understand nothing, and in another day you are speaking in English with people from different countries. You feeling like have no limits to the communication. My boyfriend is Brazilian and traveled to CT with me. That was good in the beginning, because he knows more than me to speak English and help me learn every time when I was not in the school. But after some time is better to forget the native language just for the time when you want to learn a new language. When we think in English, it is easier to speak, write and read in English. I´m a Journalism … Read more

Watcha Up to..? Beatriz Hypolito

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 say hi again to Beatriz from Brazil! ~Sheetal Makhan / AYC  Hello, I´m Beatriz from São Paulo, Brazil. My first day at EC Cape Town was June 24th of 2013, It was a cold and rainy day, a typical winter day at the city.  I started at Advanced level and stayed in it until my last day there, August 16th of 2013. This was the first time that I made an exchange course, so, I was really surprised of been in a high level just by studying English in my own country. As I´m a really talkative person, not shy at all and really interested in different cultures, for me it was easy to make new friends. In my very first day I went out with many people that I had just met at school, people I still have contact and that I talk to almost every day, and that I can say…are my friends for life. I do really miss all my experience at Cape Town, and I have to say that it wouldn´t be the same without the classes at EC. There are two special things that I really miss as a EC student: the Certificate Ceremony every Friday is the first one. I was always crying about seen someone leaving, but it was really special to listen … Read more

A short story…by Mariana Alves (Brazil)

by Sheetal Makhan / AYC In one of my recent writing classes, I gave the students the prompt, “Everyone was asleep, except…” Mariana from Brazil wrote such a lovely piece that I wanted to share it on here and she graciously agreed. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did! Everyone was asleep, except…  The little mouse under the stairs. There, he starts building his house so it brings a sofa and his bed, leaving a space for the kitchen. A cabinet to stock his cheeses was very important too. Then it thought that there should be a big cabinet! Thinking about the last preparations for his home, the little mouse remembered that his friends will arrive in few minutes to know his new home and it was better to run to the big kitchen and check if the big people who live there, forgot something. Then he could offer to his friends because his new fridge was empty! When the little mouse arrives in the big kitchen, it couldn’t believe what it was seeing! Two hamburgers with ‘extra cheese’ on the table forgotten there for him! The little mouse moves very fast. He can take away the two hamburgers and run to his house but it’s not all lucky because a piece of bread was left behind. Anyway, when he arrives at home and looks at that food, he just thought about one thing… Party! He takes his phone and asked to his friends, “Don’t arrive here without drinks…” Mariana was a General English 30 student