Welcome 2020!!!

So, here we go again. New Year’s eve in South Beach. The vibes are definitely different around here. That is why all teachers agreed to devote five minutes in class to have students talk about New Year’s resolutions. Statements like these came out: “I want to improve my English”, “I want to exercise more often”, “I want to get new job”, and stuff like that. Right after that, we had the idea of taking advantage of our famous building on lovely Lincoln road. The 1111 Lincoln Road building has been an icon of South Beach and its majestic views. We all managed to get some time to get up to the rooftop of the building. At EC Miami on the last day of this year Sandy, one of our adorable teachers, took the initiative to get an amazing photo with teachers, staff and students from Elementary, Pre-Intermediate, Intermediate, Upper Intermediate, and Advanced levels. Sandy even brought in a couple of banners in red that added up to the message we wanted to send everybody. So you guys can get the picture of what went down during day time.       On the other hand, something cool to do at night is to go and enjoy the traditional super awesome fireworks show on Ocean Drive. It is thrilling to see visitors from across the globe coming all the way to Miami Beach to spend the holiday season. People do all kinds of stuff. Right on Ocean Drive between 5th and 14th streets, you get to see travelers walking up and down while the action is taking place. Everybody walking around with a look of great expectation in their eyes, having a drink, and willing to share a few words to wish a Happy New Year regardless where you all guys … Read more

Christmas in South Beach

Well, here we go again. It is the most special time of the year. Christmas time!!! Now, isn’t it? At EC Miami the USA School of English we are aware of what the deal is when it comes to Christmas. For our cool students being far from home is not a problem. Not at all if they ever want to come up with some fun plan to do with a friend or partner in Miami South Beach. This year, during the entire Christmas eve students and staff members of EC Miami kept in touch on our super awesome whatssap group in different ways. One of them was by sharing positive vibe Christmas messages wishing the best from one to another. Another way, was by uploading pics and videos we took along the way as Christmas Eve day went by. There was something truly unusual that we ran into on the group conversation thread, though. It was a wonderful pic with our students from Switzerland, Robin and Lars, on the beach. Here is how they have their say on their experience: “What’s better than a Christmas candlelight dinner at the beach with your best friend? All you need is a table with a nice tablecloth, a beautiful Christmas tree, a candle for a pleasant atmosphere and a delicious meal. (Unfortunately we only had enough money for one potato. Miami Beach is quite expensive…). Combined with a wonderful view of the ocean, the evening can only be great! Granted: The whole thing was a bit strange, but for the picture and the smiling faces it was definitely worth it!” Greetings, Robin and Lars. We just love the contrast between the pine Christmas tree, the sand, and the ocean. Anyways, as you can see, this is a perfect example of how our students … Read more

Thanksgiving at EC Miami

    It’s that time of the year in which celebrations can not be passed up in Miami the USA School of English. The fall in the USA comes along with Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. This year, in the last week of November we had a yummy Thanksgiving lunch on Wednesday November 27th. We had an awesome time to share all together in which our students, teachers, and staff members at EC Miami had the pleasure to enjoy amazing food such as: the quintessential roast turkey, turkey stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, corn, dinner rolls, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, and finally to wash all these down, refreshing apple cider. It is always nice to sit with people and have food together while having a little chat on plans for the long weekend-as a matter of fact, the longest weekend of the year here in the USA.     As another part of our Thanksgiving celebration at EC Miami, we asked students to write down what they are thankful for. The whole point was to have them read them out loud in the students lounge before enjoying all of that amazing food. It’s meant to be a special activity to express gratitude, and it is amazing to see how many positive and heartwarming things our students are grateful for. Here are some of the most relevant gratitude statements: “I am grateful for being healthy and having family and friends”, says Qendrim from Switzerland in Intermediate. “I am grateful for my beautiful wife and family. I am grateful that we are all healthy and happy. I am also thankful for everyday I can watch the sunrise and sunset”, says Joseph, the teacher of our elementary level. Finally, I am thankful for a happy life, that my mother is still alive, and … Read more

Idiom of the Week – “pig out”

November in the USA is a month of feasting and giving thanks.   That’s what the holiday of  Thanksgiving is all about, and we’re no different at our English Center in Miami.  Spending time with loved ones, eating, drinking, and visiting with those that you care about.  Food is a big part of this holiday, and we tend to pig out when it’s Thanksgiving.  Lots and lots of food is prepared, and we eat a lot! Very simply, pigging out is to eat A LOT.  And when you take a look at a typical Thanksgiving dinner, you will see exactly what I mean!

July 4th is Independence Day! EC Miami is Closed!

The sound of fireworks is in the air, and the scent of BBQ as well.  It’s Independence Day in the USA, and as a result, EC Miami is closed.  That’s right, no English courses for our students today! Founded in 1776, the United States is celebrating 238 years of being a nation, after winning its independence from England.  Starting with thirteen original colonies (represented by the thirteen stripes), the United States of America now has 50 states in its union, each represented by one star on the American flag. There are many activities happening in South Florida for this long weekend, both tinged with patriotism and others just taking advantage of the three-day-weekend.  Whatever you do, be safe!

Memorial Day — EC Miami is Closed

  The fourth Monday of May is traditionally observed in the United States as Memorial Day.  It is a day of remembrance of the men and women that died in service of the country.  On Memorial Day, the flag of the United States is raised briskly to the top of the flagpole, then slowly lowered to the half-staff position, where it remains until noon.  This is done in observance of the holiday, and remembers over one million people that lost their lives.  It is then raised to full-staff for the rest of the day. Memorial Day is a federal holiday, and EC Miami is closed in observance, so staff and students all have the day off.  We will resume our full classes including our academic English courses on Tuesday.

Student Writing (And Winning!) — Martin Luther King, Jr. by Myriam!

  Two weeks ago, Elisa gave a lecture about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to students taking English classes in Miami here at EC  in advance of the holiday celebrating him.  As always, the students that attend write an essay on the topic, and then a winner is chosen from the entries. This month, we have a Repeat Winner!  You may remember Myriam from last October, when she wrote about Football in the United States.  Well, Myriam is back with another winning essay: January 21st is a holiday in the USA but it is also mainly a commemorative date of the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. First of all, let’s talk about why he is so famous in the USA. MLK was a pastor and he’s particularly known for fighting against the segregation but in a non-violent way. He became an important figure for civil rights and in addition to this he was the youngest person to receive a Nobel Peace Prize. By the way, MLK was born in Atlanta on the 18th of January of 1929.  He was a brilliant man.  The proof of what I’m saying is that Martin Luther King, Jr. finished college at 15.  Then, he became a clergyman who raised four children. It’s important to explain the context in which he evolved.  In the USA, at this time, black and white people were separated in public spaces.  This situation was supported by the Jim Crow Laws “Separate but Equal”.  To illustrate what I’m talking about, I’ll give you an example which made a woman famous.  On the bus, white people sat in the front and the black people in the back.  As well, there were priorities, and when there were no more seats for them, black people had to leave one. This segregation took place mainly … Read more

Academic Lecture — Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  As all of our students taking English classes in Miami know, next Monday (January 20) EC Miami will be closed in observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  Dr. King is well-known in the United States for being at the head of the civil rights movement in the 1960’s, and his “I Have A Dream” speech is taught in classrooms from elementary schools to universities.   Every month, we give our students the opportunity to attend a university-style lecture, where they can learn about local culture, celebrations, and other “outside the classroom” activities.  In honor of Dr. King, our Academic Director, Elisa, presented two lectures (for students studying in the morning and afternoon) talking about the life and accomplishments of Dr. King.  Next week, these students will turn in essays detailing what they learned in the lecture.  Check back here at the end of the month to see who our winners are!

New Year’s Resolutions — by Pinar!

  A few weeks ago, one of our teachers gave a lecture to our students taking English classes in Miami about making New Year’s Resolutions.  Audrey spoke to two different groups of students, and then the students wrote an essay about the lecture.  Pinar, one of our newer Elementary students from Turkey, wrote this:   People enter the new year with their new expectations.  I have expectations for the new year.  I want to improve my English.  In the new year, I want to see myself at the top level.  I want to stop smoking.  I want to start dieting and doing sports.  I want a reason to laugh, a new love, and new business.  I’m staying here for a long time because I want to get used to life here.  I want to build good friendships here.  I want to do postgraduate next year, find a good job in the future, and I want to be successful.  I have lots of wishes, as many other people.   But most importantly, I want a happy life and love.   2014 looks to be a busy year full of promise for Pinar!