Soccer with EC students!!

It’s no secret that football soccer is considered the most popular sport around the world. About more than two hundred million people worldwide play it. Amazing numbers, right? Either while watching it or playing it, fun is going to be there. It raises passion everywhere across continents. Being aware that the aim of the game is to drive the ball all the way up to the opposite team’s goal makes all kinds of players pretty excited, now doesn’t it? Of course, our students at EC English School Miami would not be the exception this time.They are big fans who really enjoy playing this awesome game that might be played either outdoors or indoors on a rectangular field of grass or turf. The only difference, though,  is that in indoor soccer the court is smaller, and even more convenient for our students since, trust me, the heat in Miami (not the Miami Heat basketball team, LOL) is going to make players tired in the blink of an eye.         This is precisely why just this once we picked a convenient and different property -Urban Soccer Five- a brand new place located on 1125 NW 71st St Miami, FL 33150. It is this kind of place that players rent to make sure they don’t have to deal the rain, just in case. On this occasion, our always cool teacher Joseph (the one with the green puma shirt) came up with the idea of getting soccer pick up games with our students at this spot. Many people showed up, actually fifteen, which was a really suitable number to make up a little tournament. Our students from Saudi Arabia, Switzerland, Colombia, Belgium, and Japan got in to two teams with five players each. They all had the chance to play over … Read more

Pumpkin Carving at EC Miami

Here we are aware that our traditional Halloween celebration wouldn’t be complete without fun pumpkin carvings. It has been a traditional competition activity at  EC English School Miami ever since the center was opened back in 2012. As a matter of fact, it’s a yearly Halloween tradition that came to the United States from Irish immigrants. At our center we take care of providing enough pumpkins. We also arrange everything around our neat students lounge. Let me tell you, though, that pumpkin carving needs some special tools kits. Sometimes a simple knife would do the trick as well. That is precisely why usually on October 30th every year we host a competition with the most creative carved pumpkin. The students who want to participate split into teams, they watch a short but interesting tutorial pumpkin carving video, they work together, they do their thing, and they have their fun. In an easy and entertaining way, our students can learn that the top of the pumpkin is cut off to form a lid, the inside flesh is scooped out, and an image usually a scary or funny face – is carved out of the rind to expose the hollow interior. To create the lantern effect, a light source, traditionally a flame such as a candle or tea light, is placed within before the lid is closed. However, these lanterns can be used with electric lights that are also marketed. It is common to see pumpkin lanterns on doorsteps and otherwise used as decorations prior to and on Halloween. This year contestants got the picture really well, as they were able to work on their corresponding pumpkins while listening to cool music. The results were awesome, and you can tell they did their best. Just take a look at the five carved … Read more

Bake Sale Tomorrow!

You may remember a recent post regarding raising funds to help with Disaster Relief in the South Pacific. As part of EC Miami’s continuing efforts to help the people affecting by this terrible tragedy, students and staff are encouraged to take part in our Bake Sale tomorrow (Friday, November 22). Long-Term students (such as those preparing for their Cambridge ESOL exams) and recent arrivals are all asked to bring in baked goods to the student lounge tomorrow morning to sell to the rest of the students and staff. All money raised will be sent to relief efforts in the Philippines.

Donate Your Old Clothes!!

Many students come to EC Miami for an extended period of time. Students that are preparing for their Cambridge ESOL Exams, for example, spend around three months with us brushing up on their skills and then take the test at the end of their time. One of the perks of coming to South Florida for so many students is, other than the beach and nightlife, the Shopping. Ah, shopping. The promise of arriving in a country with two suitcases and needing Five after buying all the clothes and shoes that your heart desires. The necessity to pay extra fees on your flight going home because of all the extra baggage. Why complicate things? This year, we are collecting clothes that students and staff don’t wear any longer to donate to local charities here in South Florida. Everyone is encouraged to drop off any clothes they don’t want anymore in the box that has been placed in the lobby. Don’t worry about filling the box — we can get more!

Natural Disaster Relief — Please Help!

    Last week, Typhoon Haiyan devastated the Philippines leaving thousands dead, and many more displaced without shelter, food, water, and clothing.  This story has blanketed the news over the past seven days, and resonates particularly here in South Florida, where hurricanes are part of the local culture.   Here at EC Miami, we have left a collection glass in the reception area.  Intensive students, Semi-Intensive students, students studying for Cambridge ESOL Exams, and teachers/administrators alike are asked to help out in any way they can, and donate what they feel comfortable with.   Our hearts and thoughts are with all the people affected by this terrible tragedy.

Movember at EC Miami!

Movember 2013 Here for your Cambridge ESOL Exams?  Perhaps just to be a tourist?  Calling all Mo Bros (and Sistas)…Movember is almost here again! All you have to do is grow a moustache (or wear a fake one if you’re a Mo Sista) for the month of November (Movember) to raise funds and awareness for prostate/testicular cancer and mental health. Are you man (or woman) enough to Mo? Join the EC Miami Movember page NOW!

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Students here at our Miami English School may notice that there is a little more pink in the month of October. No, it’s not a new fashion trend, it’s in recognition of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Worldwide, Breast Cancer counts for almost 25% of all cancer cases in women. Almost 500,000 deaths each year are due to this form of cancer, and in October there are many events to raise awareness, funds, and to encourage early screenings. After all, the earlier the disease is detected, the quicker treatment is able to start. Time is, of course, of the essence. One organization, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, is particularly active in the United States during this month, organizing 5K walks/runs in various cities, including Miami. All people of all ages are encouraged to participate, and it’s all for women’s health! More information about the Miami event can be found here. And pink is encouraged everywhere! (The travel mug in the picture is mine — Mark). Participate in the run.  Wear pink.  Get checked.  Get Educated!

Student Writing – Community Service (by Leah Park)

Every month, we invite a guest to come to our school and give an academic-style lecture to the students.  Students write essays on the lecture, and a winner is chosen.  This month we have TWO winners!   Tolmage Thornhill works for Miami city regarding community service.  She gave us a lecture about what community service is, and what they do for the city.  Generally, community service is a kind of safety net.  For their city, they provide a wide variety of services both hard and soft.  Community service is provided by federal, state, and local programs.  Federal community service is done by the United States government, like SNAP, Social Security, medicare, and TANF.  State programs are done by various departments like the Department of Children and Families.  State programs also work together with local programs.  For local programs sources of funding are important.  About community service, I think the system is too complicated.  Usually people who need help are not able to find information and prepare for eligibility.  So I thought that people who are working for community services need to find actively find people who need their help.  She also introduced an interesting volunteering program that I can participate in.  Besides, she talked about the seven habits.  The seven habits are to be proactive, with the end in mind, put first things First, first think win-win, seek first to understand, then the understanding, synergize and sharpen the saw.   –Lean Park is a High Intermediate student from South Korea.

Student Writing – Community Service (by Diego Chico)

Every month, we invite a guest to come to our school and give an academic-style lecture to the students.  Students write essays on the lecture, and a winner is chosen.  This month we have TWO winners!   All systems in all coutnries have their bad parts.  This is why there are a lot of people in all communities around the world having bad moments and living with difficulties for example economical, health, housing problems and even old people who do not even have relatives to talk to.  But the good part is that there are people and organizations (non profit organizations) that are there to help all these people with their issues.   Here in the Miami Beach Community there is one of these organizations supported by the government and the private sector.  Its mission is to help people to make their problems easier to overcome with different kinds of programs.   For example there is one that is in charge of assisting people with their needs, such as helping people with food stamps, employment services for those people who do not have jobs or have difficulties finding one.  There are even a lot of federal programs operated by the government of the USA that give people SNAP, social security, medicare, Medicaid and TANF.   Also because of all the medical issues in this country these organizations are trying to fight in order to change something to make it easier for common people to go to a doctor.   There are also state programs that protect children from child abuse and neglect.  (These are founded by the US Government but operated by the states).  These organizations also have programs for people who want to help in order for them to be able to volunteer by helping to clean common areas, … Read more

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