Thanksgiving Day Lecture winner!

Konomi Ishida was our winner for the best essay about the Thanksgiving Day lecture.  Read below to see how this star shined! Thanksgiving day is a national holiday in the U.S.A. and they enjoy their time with family.  On the day, they eat turkey, pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce and corn.  In 17th century, Pilgrims lived in England.  they were searching for freedom so they left on the Mayflower that is ship in 1620.  The journey was not happy, bacause a lot of storms hit the ship and many people had a sick.  They had many difficulties in the New World.  In first winter, half of them died, so it was so hard for them.  After that, they met the Native Americans.  And next year, the Pilmgrms and the Native Americans celbrated it together, but then they fought many times, so tthe Pilgrims aggravated relations with the Native Americans. In 1983, Sarah Hale sent a letter to the govenment to make a national holiday.  And Franklin Roosevelt made a long national holiday about one week.  It was called Franksgiving day.  Speaking of modern traditions, are Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York.  It started in 1924.  the event is really famous in the USA.  As you can see the day (November -4th Thursdsay) is very important for the Americans. Konomi Ishida

EC is all about Movember!!

Have you seen a lot of guys with extra facial hair this month? Why you ask?? November is also known to many as Movember!! What is Movember?? Movember is an initiative that sees men all over the world growing a moustache (or ‘mo’) in order to raise money and awareness for men’s health issues, specifically prostrate and testicular cancer. How did the men get started?  It was easy!  Once registered at movember.com, each ‘Mo Bro’ must begin the 1st November with a clean-shaven face. Then, for the entire month of November, each Mo Bro must grow and groom a moustache! The men of EC got involved in this great initiative too! Male members of staff at EC Vancouver, EC Toronto, EC Cambridge, EC Brighton and EC London have all joined the cause to raise money and awareness If you wish to support this worthy cause, then you can visit the Movember website and donate for an individual or a Centre. For more information, go to www.movember.com

Do YOU know how to use the 3rd floor bathrooms?

EC Miami prides itself on living its core values: We love what we do, We deliver what we promise, We have a can-do mindset and We go the extra mile! As we strive to become Global Citizens, it is important that we start incorporating this idea of community, right here in the 1111 building!  Here at EC Miami, students, staff and teachers share space in a landmark building, right in the heart of South Beach on the very glamorous street of Lincoln Road.  We share a space in the acclaimed Suntrust building along with other famed enterprises such as MTV Latin America and Nickelodean. Now, would we at EC Miami want the likes of such famous entertainment channels to stumble into the 3rd floor bathrooms and find the kind of bathroom culture that we have created?  Surely not! Let’s all work together to become Global Citizens by taking our core values one step further: to the 3rd floor bathrooms! We love what we do! :  We love to use clean bathrooms! We go the extra mile!: We wipe down the bathroom counter after we have washed our hands and made a mess. We deliver what we promise! :  We promise to dispose of all waste and make sure that it gets to it the right recipient! We have a can-do mindset!: We CAN successfully leave the bathroom as clean as we found it

Why did you choose Miami?

Coralie and her friend Christian travelled to EC Miami together from Switzerland. They recently left EC Miami and headed back to their home country but they were great students to have in class here and Coralie became famous among EC Miami students when she wore a very creative Halloween costume – Cookie Monster (and she gave away cookies to everyone!). We like to ask our students why they decided to study at EC Miami. Find out more about Coralie and Christian’s choices and Coralie’s experience at EC Miami by reading their testimonials below. “I improved my English for 3 weeks. I would like to stay and continue to learn but I must go back to work. I liked improving my conversation, especially on Thursday with the ‘Chill & Chat’. My accommodation in Hotel 18 was very practical because it’s good situated near the school. Thank you and all the best for EC school.” – Coralie Christian said that both of them liked the weather in Miami, but he also pointed out that the distance was important to him. “It’s also it’s not too far from my country. In less than 10 hours we can be there and it’s very nice.” -Christian Did they convince you? Come study with us at EC Miami! Find out more on our website: http://www.ecenglish.com/school-locations/learn-english-in-miami.

Thanksgiving Lecture

Students in a few of the afternoon classes at EC Miami had the opportunity yesterday to find out more details about the Thanksgiving holiday. All of the students knew that the holiday had something to do with turkey and eating a lot of food, but during Reese’s lecture they found out more about the history of Thanksgiving and how it is celebrated today. Reese gave information about the traditional story of the Pilgrims and the Native Americans sharing a meal together after the Pilgrims arrived in the New World, but she also explained that some people are not as happy about Thanksgiving because it began the conflicts between settlers and Native Americans, which would continue for many years. She went on to discuss the typical foods and many students were surprised to find out just how much food Americans tend to eat on this food-filled holiday. Later in the lecture she also gave information about the traditions on the fourth Thursday in November, such as watching football, joining together with family, and possibly watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. In addition, students found out about the day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday and the good and bad parts of this day. To find out more about Black Friday, read our other blog post. She also warned students about travelling during the Thanksgiving holiday because more than 40 million people will most likely travel during these days and the airports and roads become very busy. Lastly, she discussed way to spend Thanksgiving in Miami. Don’t forget that if you attended the lecture, you have the opportunity to turn in a summary of the lecture and you can win a prize. The winner will also have their writing published on the blog, so make sure you give yours to Elisa soon!

Books Downtown in Miami

Our EC Miami students Fitoria and Michael attended the Miami International Book Fair last Friday and were asked by their teacher to write about the experience.  To help them learn about reading in the U.S. they were asked to interview various people at the fair. Read what they wrote about this interesting event. To read more about the fair, read our other informational blog post. On Friday went to Miami downtown to the Miami International Book Fair. It was our first time in Downtown, it was amazing to see so many students and the real, American life. In our interview we spoke with a woman about 50 years old. She likes different kind of books, but most of them are spiritual, historial, and novels. Also, mystery books rouse her interest. The last book which she read was a research time period book about the Ice Man in the Alps. It was a very interesting experience to talk to different peopel and walk around the international book fair. We would recommend to students to go there.

Black Friday Deals in South Florida

Many students are getting excited about the Thanksgiving break this Thursday and Friday and a few are getting prepared for the biggest shopping day of the year in the U.S. – Black Friday. A few classes at EC Miami have learned about the origins of Black Friday and students who attended today’s lecture on Thanksgiving find out about the pros and cons of Black Friday. To find out more about the Thanksgiving lecture by Reese you will need to read our next blog post. Black Friday is always the Friday after Thanksgiving and it is the start of the holiday shopping season. For this reason, many stores across the country have extreme sales. Because of the low prices, many people line up for hours before the stores open their doors and some really dedicated shoppers even camp outside the store that has their favorite deal. The shopping day has become crazier throughout the years and now some stores even open at midnight and stay open all night. Although some people walk away happy because they have finished a large portion of their holiday shopping, Black Friday has turned violent. In recent years there have been stories of people bringing pepper spray and using it on other customers, fights breaking out, and sadly even a few deaths by trampling. It is your choice whether you decide to brave the crowds and go shopping this Friday in the Miami area, but if you go, please make sure that you stay safe. The list below gives a list of popular stores in the area and the times that they will be open on Thursday or Friday for the extreme sales. Sawgrass Mills Mall (outlets): 9 p.m. Thursday (open for 24 hours) Dolphin Mall: 9 p.m. Thursday (open for 25 hours) Aventura Mall: 6 … Read more

Supporting Hurricane Sandy Victims

EC Miami, along with all of the other EC schools in the USA, worked hard to raise money for the victims of Hurricane Sandy. As many of you know, Hurricane Sandy, which happened about a month ago, affected a lot of the US, especially the area around New York and New Jersey in a very negative way. Although there wasn’t many problems in Miami, the other states up north experienced lots of flooding and damage and many people died because of the strong storm. EC decided that we needed to help people affected by Hurricane Sandy including some EC staff members in other centers. Therefore, we organized a bake sale to benefit the Red Cross. The bake sale was a great success. In total EC Miami raised $161 from the donations and profit from the cookies, brownies, empanadas, cornbread, and muffins cooked (or bought) by EC Miami teachers and staff, as well as a few students. The most popular item was definitely the homemade empanadas made by our L0w-Intermediate teacher Lynnette. She made about 90 of them and they disappeared very quickly. A few students were surprised to find out that empanadas, although they might look sweet, are actually filled with meat and many people took advantage of the empanadas as a lunch snack. A big thanks to all of our teachers and students who participated in the bake sale!

Miami International Book Fair

Do you want to do something funandeducational this weekend? It is possible to do both at the Miami International Book Fair located in downtown Miami. This festival happens once a year and it is a great place to find new books in English to read, talk to native English speakers, and even see performances and try new street foods. Today, the FCE class at EC Miami went to the fair to try to interview native speakers about their reading habits. Surprisingly, it is quite easy to start a conversation with native speakers in this setting because many of the people at the fair are authors who are not famous yet. They want to promote their books and talk to potential customers, so talking with these people is a great way to practice your English in a natural setting outside of class. In addition to the opportunity to speak more English, you can also buy really cheap books. Some books only cost $1 and there are also different types of publications like magazines, comic books, and older books that are difficult to find. It is always good to read as much as possible in English to increase your vocabulary and the Miami International Book Fair will help you to do that. The fair is located on the campus of Miami-Dade College at the Wolfson Campus. For those of you who have been to downtown Miami before, it is close to Bayside Marketplace. For more information about the festival, prices, and times, go to: http://www.miamibookfair.com/. Happy reading!

Letter to a Veteran

The FCE class at EC Miami practiced their letter writing skills last week by writing letters to veterans in the spirit of Veteran’s Day. After learning a little bit about the origins of the holiday, the class decided to write letters similar to those that people write for Operation Gratitude. To find out more about Operation Gratitude, click here. If you would like more information about the meaning of Veteran’s Day, read our blog post. Dear Veteran, We are two students from Switzerland and we hear about you while talking in class about the Veterans Day. We are very thankful to have people like you serving for their countries. We would thank you very much for your services as a Navy pilot for the World War I. You are like a hero to us. Leaving your country, your family and your friends for going in a dangerous country to help other people is incredibly courageous and shows a huge strength from you. We admire you a lot for that. We also are curious about which branch of the army you were in. Is it hard being away from your family for so long? It would be awesome to hear from someone who fight for his country. Thanks again for everything!!! All our support, Marina and Margaux