Going abroad to learn English is a unique experience and there’s more to taking an English course than just lessons. What you do after school plays a big part in your trip. Participation in social activities is an important part of being a student and a good activity programme really adds value to a study-abroad course. Outside of the classroom, your diary should be full of exciting social events and excursions as you explore your destination.
So make sure you ask the school:
Do you offer a social programme?
Whether you enjoy sightseeing, sports, the arts, shopping or just relaxing, a school should offer a varied activity programme of social activities throughout your stay.
Check to see if there is something for you to do every day if you choose to. This is particularly important for new arrivals because most students take a course alone and don’t know anyone else on their first day.
Social interaction on these programmes allows you to mix with other students from all over the world, practise your English and, importantly, make new friends. Social bonds are improved when people have fun together -it’s a great way to start building relationships.
A fun programme will have a positive impact on your stay and make you happier. And as you may know, it’s easier to learn when we are happy!
Schools should offer a good range of free activities that allow you to get the best out of your destination. There should also be the option to take part in additional paid activities organised by the school, for example, excursions to places of interest, weekend day trips or even weekends away. The good thing about these, especially if you are only abroad for a short period of time, is that the school organises everything, so you can avoid the hassle and stress of planning!
If you want to be certain of meeting people just like you, consider taking a specialised course. For example, on a Business English course you are probably going to meet with other professional people. Some English programmes are age-specific e.g. courses for teens, over-thirties and over-fifties. Ask the school counsellor if it’s possible to study with students around your age.
Watch this space for the third most important question to ask before booking. If you just can’t wait for our next blog post, download our FREE Guide about choosing a language school today!