Creative sparks from students!

This Monday, there were many class tests which were written. Usually, students want to go home immediately – exhausted from 3 hours of tests! However, this week was very different. Five students joined me for a group tutorial focused on writing. As their tutor, my purpose was two-fold: 1. I wanted to unleash their creative sparks and show them what they are unknowingly capable of. 2. I wanted them to escape. Even for 20 minutes. To forget about their worries, fears, situations with their families and countries. By the end of the tutorial, my mission was accomplished. Here’s why: I presented the students with a picture. They had only ten minutes to write – absolutely anything that came to their mind and heart. As I always say, “Words that come from the heart, enter the heart.” Their writing was so good that I had to share it here for the world to see. Congratulations! I’m so proud of you. This was the picture: I won’t surrender by Mohamed (Libya) I can see the ant. It will try to do something difficult. With the end of the day, it keeps trying …and it’s tomorrow. It’s a new day. And I will try again. So whatever. I will try again and again. And I won’t surrender. Never. Every day is a new start. If the world doesn’t support me, I can support myself. When I fail in something, I try to go to the top. I will try and I will do. Finally, I do. Nothing is impossible. I am possible. No pain. No gain. —————————————- It still has the power by Mustafa (Libya) The picture appears how the ant is working. How it lives in the desert. On the rocks. Besides the sea, on the beach…and it still has the power until sunset. It tried … Read more

EC Cape Town Student Donates Book to Library

When students leave EC Cape Town, they don’t leave for good they always find themselves a month or two later back at EC visiting all the staff its like they are glued to our team! We in all honesty cannot blame them, we welcome each student, past and present with open arms into our family, we simply love seeing them smile and feeling at home. Below mentioned is one of our students that recently graduated from EC, he decided to make a last “pop-in”before leaving EC Cape Town and South Africa for his home land. Ahmed Bafgeesh, one of our students from Yemen that completed the Academic Year 30 Program, loved spending every spare minute he could in the Library. Reading is an important step for each of our students as this helps them to understand and build sentences. A day before leaving South Africa, ending 7 months with the EC family, he decided to come back to his home away from home and leave his mark, he did so by donating a book to one of his favorite places in the school, the library! Teacher Hardie Bosman, one of the teachers that assists students when renting out a book, gladly accepted and added his donation to our collection of books! Thank you Ahmed for your generous donation, we will surely miss you at EC Cape Town and we wish you all of the best of luck for your future endeavors! __________________________________ Remember to follow us on Facebook or Twitter RELATED BLOG POSTS English Language Students of EC Cape Town Share your #ECEXPERIENCE with our global community of EC English students

Listening Center Benefits by Ahmed Zubi

by Sheetal Makhan With my office being on the fifth floor, I get to see the “regulars” of the Listening Center everyday! One student who is there daily is Ahmed Zubi. I was really interested to learn more about how this facility has helped Ahmed’s progress while studying English. Please read his piece below: Listening Center Benefits by Ahmed Zubi Nobody can argue that Listening is one of the most important communicating skills because it enables you to understand people and respond properly to them. That’s why language students ought to give it a considerable effort as well as the language centers ought to do. Listening will expose you to a variety of accents. Moreover it will improve your pronunciation, intonation and ellipsis which are not achievable by reading. However, as reading does, your collocations, structures and expressions will also be improved by listening. Having done both simultaneously, you’ll get most of the input skills, which you can imitate to express yourself. By listening and reading at the same time, your brain can subconsciously bind the word with its pronunciation, but that doesn’t mean you leave reading completely! Realizing all the above, I started going to the Listening Center on the 5th floor and I noted a significant improvement after about one month. In addition I got a better score in listening tests. The center contains a diverse collection of amazing books which explain quaint natural facts such as world wonders. Others speak about courage and people experience, although the majority have been stories of different sorts. They are thought-provoking detective stories, romantic, courage, poignant stories narrated in an fascinating way and taken from different countries (UK, USA, India, South Africa, Ireland and Thailand). However some of them has a message which I disagree with, but it’s  the language that you should seek, not only the ideas. … Read more

Madagascar by Eva Razafinarivo

Madagascar by Eva Razafinarivo Between 2009 and 2013, Madagascar was in a period of political transition. It all started with a coup d’etat that allowed the former mayor of Antananarivo (capital of Madagascar) to be President of a transitional government. During this period, all the international aid was suspended. For a country whose national budget depends mostly on international aid, it was catastrophic. For example, the government could not even pay the salaries of the employees on time. Furthermore, it was said that the armed forces lent their guns to bandits to earn money. That’s why the country became insecure, especially in rural areas. Moreover, the corruption has increased during this period. Consequently, people didn’t trust the justice system anymore, which was well-known to be corrupted. The crisis was supposed to come to an end with the election of a new president. But it was not as simple as that. Actually, even if Madagascar has a new president and even if the actual government is recognized by the international community, the political situation remains fragile. ____________________ Eva is a General English (GE30) student  

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

Chocolate in the Listening Centre? Yes!

by Mayu Kakado Do you know where chocolate comes from? or… Do you know how much the most expensive chocolate is? Come to the Listening Center to find out! Today I read a book about chocolate. It taught me about the history of chocolate, what it is and how to make chocolate cookies. It also spoke about all the different chocolate events of the world. I really enjoyed this book and it made me feel like I want to eat chocolate. Of course, the Listening Center is good to practice your listening and also … it gives us some interesting knowledge. “Chocolate” by Janet Hardy-Gould (Mayu)

Watcha Up to..? Yasar Artar

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 MERHABA to our former Turkish student, Yasar Artar. He had a really great adventure after he spent some time with us at EC Cape Town. Read on for his story! ~Sheetal Makhan / AYC      I’m  Yasar from Turkey. I have been at EC Cape Town for a short period of time! Even though I have been to there for 5 weeks, I had a great and interesting time. Also, when I was there, I wasn’t alone, at all. My younger brother was accompanying me. I landed in Cape Town in a gloomy day, it was around the beginning of July. At that time I felt little bit fear. It was my first abroad experience!  After settling down, I went to school and did some tests. After all these procedures I managed to start from Intermediate. I can say that without hesitating, EC Cape Town is like a small family. Once the classes had started, I have never felt lonely, at all. Classes are small and heart-warming! All the teachers care about you and you can speak to them whenever you need! Currently, I am studying my MBA degree in Japan in English. What I obtained in EC Cape Town not only English language skills but also confidence to move further in the life. If you ask me that what … Read more

AY Student of the Month: May 2014

by Sheetal Makhan / AYC If you don’t see her, you’ll surely hear her! Our Marta Santana from Angola is a force to be reckoned with. Starting at Beginner level, she has made tremendous progress with her English studies while at EC Cape Town. Not only is she a vibrant, young lady with so much to offer her classmates during discussions and activities, I’ve also known her to be extremely caring towards her friends. No one is more deserving of the AY student of the Month more than Marta! Well done… Name: Marta Santana Nationality: Angolan Profession: Lawyer When did you begin at EC?: I began in July 2013 What level did you begin at?: Beginner Current level: Intermediate What is your reason for studying English?: I need it for my future job. What extra facilities/classes at EC do you do? (eg Listening Center, Pronunciation Class etc…): I use all the extra facilities. The ones that I frequent: Listening Center and free classes! Has this helped? How? Yes it helped me a lot! For example – how to speak accurately and quite fluently. What tips/advice would you give to other students to improve their English?: My advice for the students would be to work hard and please…you should go to the free classes!

From the Book Nook

by Sheetal Makhan / AYC I like to support South African authors, and when I picked this book up a few weeks ago, the synopsis at the back really caught my attention. It’s the biography of Ayesha (Bibi) Dawood, a dedicated activist from the 1950’s. She was one who stood trial with others like Nelson Mandela during the Treason Trials. She endured harassment and being imprisoned – being separated by her family for months on end. During all this political turmoil, on the other side of the world, Yusuf was pining! He saw “Bibi” for the first time in India a few years back and jumped ship in Durban to travel to Worcester (just outside Cape Town) to find his lady love. Actually, I’d love to give more information about this story, but it would spoil it for you if you decided to read it! I absolutely loved this. It was a love story like none I’ve heard of before and I found myself thinking of the characters even when I wasn’t reading. I found it to be quite an easy read and I have no doubt that our students would enjoy it just as much. The English Academic Year Programme believes that Readers are Leaders!

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