Meet EC Montreal’s English Teacher, Katrina Olsen!

We are delighted to introduce you to EC Montreal’s English teacher, Katrina Olsen. Katrina began working with EC Montreal in July 2017 with our Young Learners.  After the Young Learners programme was over, she moved to our adult centre to teach our General English lessons. She has been teaching a closed group of Brazilian students for the past two weeks and the students could not be happier!  They worked on the Create a Nation theme last week and this week’s theme is Government and Politics. Katrina is originally from Toronto, Ontario.  She moved to Montreal and immediately fell in love with its culture and charm. She studied at the University of Toronto, graduating with her bachelors in Music and Education. Having been teaching English for one year now, Katrina has a passion for working with youth and young adults and strives to encourage young learners to explore their passions within learning. Besides teaching, Katrina loves spending time playing music (she can play 11 different instruments), exploring new places with her camera, and talking about her cat, Arthur. EC Montreal is proud to have Katrina on our team!  Join our EC Montreal English language school.

EC Montreal’s Homestay of the Year Awards!

Last Friday, we celebrated our winners of EC’s Homestay of the Year competition! Marc Girard & Chantal Fournier came in first place. They have had the most positive feedback from our students. In second place was Valerie Clayton. We had a lovely celebratory dinner and presented them with a certificate of appreciation as well as gifts. We shared experiences and an amazing meal together. It was very clear from our conversations that we made the right choice! Both families love what they do and absolutely adore hosting students! We thank all our homestays for going the extra mile for our students and providing a genuine”home away from home” for our students! We have now nominated Marc and Chantal Fournier to win the Homestay of the Year for all of Canada.  A committee of judges will then choose the winning family.  This family will then be entered for the grand prize which is a trip for 2 to Malta!  We are keeping our fingers crossed for our family! Chantal and Marc as well as Valerie both sent us thank you messages.  They are honored to be celebrated as our homestays of the year!  We are delighted to share their messages with you: Chantal and I send you our warmest thank you for the lovely dinner, for the gift and for the honor of being chosen as best host family. It was completely unexpected and we have to say that it is making the beginning of 2018 quite special and inspiring for us. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Marc et Chantal I really enjoyed Friday night it was great!  Good food good company and wonderful appreciation!  Thank you! Valerie Join our EC Montreal English language school.

EC Montreal’s Young Learners Present!

EC Montreal is hosting a group of Brazilian teenagers for a two-week period.  They have been following EC’s Young Learner curriculum. In our Young Learners programme, students learn in a warm and dynamic environment.  Every week, the lessons are of a certain theme.  Students work in pairs and groups with a variety of audio and video materials. The students develop strategies to improve their speaking, listening, reading and writing skills, however, the focus is on the spoken word.  Students practice the language in fun pair and group activities and the aim is for them to gain confidence to communicate in their new language environment. The students have project work every week and on Friday, they present their work to the class.  This week’s theme was “Create a Nation”.  Students had to invent their own country, nation or planet.  They had to create the flag, the currency, the attributes, resources and all other facts about their nation.  The students were divided in 5 different teams.  For their presentation, they decided to hold a Nation’s fair and invite other students from the school to visit their booths. We were all blown away by their creativity and hard work.  The amount of details they came up with was outstanding!  The visiting classes were given a list of questions to ask.  They were asked about the countries agriculture, culture, climate, residents and so much more.  The students answered the questions so confidently and with great passion!  They made very country look so inviting! A special thank you to our teacher, Katrina, for leading the project work this week!  It looks like the students really improved their English skills and had a lot of fun in the process! We look forward to next week’s Government and Politics theme! Join our EC Montreal English language school!

EC Montreal’s English in the City Class Presents…

Yesterday, Pooria’s English in the City class gave a presentation recapping their visit to the Shriner’s Hospital.  They each took turns talking about the hospital and what they learned from the tour. They also showed videos given to us by the Shriners.  One was a welcome video from one of their patients and the other was a thank you video for our fundraising efforts. We were delighted to welcome Jennifer Bradely to EC Montreal.  She is the Fundraising Event Specialist for the Shriner’s Hospital.  She had given us the most incredible tour last week and when she learned that the students were going to be giving a presentation about the Shriners, she wanted to be a part of it. In December, our school held its 14th annual charity bake sale for the Shriners.  We are proud to raise funds for such an amazing institution.  Their thoughtfulness and care is evident in all aspects of their organization.  They always make us feel so special and are so appreciate of our fundraising efforts. At yesterday’s presentation, Jennifer helped to answer questions from the audience.  Students asked about where they can donate and if the hospital accepts volunteers.  Jennifer encouraged anyone interested in getting involved to reach out. Jennifer has promised to come back to EC Montreal and set up a volunteer booth in the student lounge to promote the different volunteer opportunities available to our students. Thank you to the English in the City class for their presentations. Join our EC Montreal English language school.

Zumba Lesson at EC Montreal!

EC Montreal’s New Year’s resolution month is alive and well at EC Montreal!  Today, Nadia from Bamboofit lead an energetic and dynamic zumba class!  It was wonderful to see our students race to the bathroom after their class today to change into their sports clothes and so excited to work out! Nadia set the perfect tone for the class!  She had festive music blaring and got everyone pumped for the class!  Her dance moves and athletic abilities were very impressive! The students appreciated the class so much they asked if it could be repeated every week!  Kudos to our staff Mirka and Renee who actively participated. EC Montreal’s mission this month was to make students aware of the importance of our health.  The heart is a muscle and it should be worked out regularly.  We hope we have inspired our students to continue this healthy path and put their well-being first! There is one more activity to wrap up our New Year’s Resolution month – we look forward to our self-defense class next week, when we will learn how to be confident and strong! Join our EC Montreal English language school.

Tips on How to Walk on Ice and Snow!

Freezing rain has been in the forecast all day and it has been difficult getting around the city.  We, Montrealers, have experience with this harsh weather and have learned how to walk on snow and ice without getting hurt.  Our EC Montreal students, however, have been experiencing this type of weather for the first time.  To avoid getting injured, we thought we would share a very good article posted by MTL Blog on how to stay safe during such extreme and harsh climates. Walk like a Penguin The trick lies in shifting your center-of-gravity over your forward-facing foot rather than sharing evenly between both feet. Keep your Eyes Peeled Being entirely aware of your surroundings is crucial when walking around in winter.  Not only do you have to keep your gaze fixed to the floor so you miss all those deadly ice paths, but you also need to stay aware of everyone else walking around, sliding this way and that in your way.  You can’t keep one eye glued to the floor and the other to the ground, so go for quick glances in either direction, and always mind your peripheries. Know your snow Not all snow and ice is created equally slippery.  You have the regular white and powdery stuff, which offers a nice layer of traction, your crumbly ice slush, which can be broken up to give some crunchy texture to the ground, and then your straight up black ice that will quickly send you to the ground. Slow and steady wins the race Speed is not your friend when you’re walking around in an urban ice deathtrap like today.  Your normal walking pace is much too quick and haphazard for today’s tundra-like conditions, so don’t be fooled into thinking you can walk like a normal human being.  … Read more

Canada Ranked the Second Best Country in the World!

Attention all EC Montreal students!  We told you on your first day at EC Montreal that one of our goals was to make you fall in love with Montreal and to make you feel great about your decision in choosing Montreal and Canada as your destination to learn English or French.  Well, today, we learned that Canada has been ranked the second best country in the world according to the 2018 Best Countries report by US News and World Report.  This should make you feel amazing that you chose to study in such a well-respected and revered country! The number two ranking is out of a list of 80 countries, and Canada only trails behind Switzerland at number one. Canada also came in at number one for quality of life and number four for citizenship. The quality of life sub-ranking is based on several factors: affordability, job market, economic stability, family-friendliness, income equality, political stability, safety, and quality of public services such as the healthcare and school systems. The citizenship sub-ranking measures many factors such as gender equality, human rights, religious freedom, and trustworthiness. Canada ranked number four overall in this category, just being edged out by Norway at number one, Switzerland at two, and Denmark in third place. According to the publishers, the 2018 Best Countries report and rankings are based on how global perceptions define countries in terms of a number of qualitative characteristics, impressions that have the potential to drive trade, travel and investment and directly affect national economies. Eighty countries, up from 60 in the inaugural rankings, were measured in this year’s report. Here are the 5 best countries to live in the world right now: Switzerland Canada Germany United Kingdom Japan Join us at one of our three Canadian schools; EC Montreal, Toronto or Vancouver – or choose all … Read more

Meet EC Montreal’s Japanese Counselor, Mariella Gaffrey!

We are delighted to introduce you to EC Montreal’s English and French teacher as well as our Japanese counselor, Mariella Gaffrey.  Mariella has been working for EC Montreal for almost 2 years.  She has taught both our English and French levels.  She has also been named teacher of the month several times.  She is well respected and liked by both our team of teachers, staff and her students. Mariella is half Japanese and speaks the language fluently.  She has shown an interest in becoming more involved at EC.  She started helping out with test invigilation and assisting us in our communication with beginner Japanese students. She has been named our Japanese counselor and will be leading student focus groups with our Japanese students as well as orientation sessions with our Japanese groups. Mariella is originally from Seattle,Washington.  She has lived in five different countries and speaks 4 languages; English, French, Japanese and Spanish.  She is dynamic, curious and attentive. Mariella has a background in Psychology and Journalism, and she has been teaching since the age of 22. She loves learning about different cultures and why people do the things they do. She wishes her students to feel comfortable in the classroom and to become as passionate as she is for learning. Her favorite meal is breakfast; eggs sunny side up. Music; anything that’s tasteful, enjoyable and loud. We are very proud to have Mariella on our team at EC Montreal! Join our EC Montreal English language school!

Montreal Will Host a Vintage Retro Fair!

If you are looking for something a little different to do and are interested in exploring a different neighborhood of Montreal beyond the city centre, this vintage fair is for you! Our EC Montreal students are always looking for funky souvenirs to bring back home so we have a feeling they are going to love this event! On Saturday, February 24 from 9 to 4:30 p.m., the St. John Berchmans Church will be hosting a vintage retro fair.  There will be more than 35 exhibitors under one roof and tons of vintage, antique, retro and industrial treasures to find! Among the items for sale you can find: Vintage deco Objects of antique / retro collections Jewelry / Accessories vintage and antique Vintage clothing Small and medium furniture Chests and boxes (wood and metal) Retro lamps retro frames and vintage prints Books and period magazines Dishes / Pyrex and kitchenware Vinyl Old toys Curiosities And much more!! Entrance to the event is free but you are asked to bring your own recyclable bags. The church is located at 5945 Cartier Street, corner Rosement.  It is located on the East end of Montreal which is typically more French.  This is a perfect opportunity for our French EC Montreal students to interact with native French speakers! Join our EC Montreal English language school!

EC Montreal’s Orange Carpet Experience!

When you come to EC Montreal English language school, you should expect a lot more!  You should expect to be treated as our guest!  The EC Montreal team works hard every day to make the student experience a positive one!  The team is here for our students, who are our special guests!  We will go out of our way to ensure our students have a pleasant, inspiring and memorable stay in Montreal! Upon your arrival, we literally roll out the “orange carpet” to show our students how very special they are to us! We make sure to give each and every student personal attention and care!  We will know and remember their name, we will celebrate their birthday, we will answer their questions and listen to their needs.  This is EC Montreal’s guarantee to our clients! Throughout the students’ journey at EC, they will receive special attention and care.  They can start connecting with EC even before their arrival by logging in to EC online.  There, students will find all the planned events as well as important Montreal facts and centre information. The students will receive a VIP greeting at the airport if they book the transfer service.  The accommodation provider will also ensure they are welcomed in a very special way. Students are invited to participate in our Sunday experience before starting their lessons on Monday.  Students meet outside the EC Montreal main campus at 4:30 for a tour of Old Montreal.  New students can then choose to go to the group dinner at 6:30. We encourage our new students to join the Sunday activity so they can meet other new students and EC staff members.  This will make their Monday arrival a lot less stressful and intimidating.  They will already have friends at EC! On Monday, they have a chance to meet the rest … Read more