TEFAQ Preparation Course!

EC Montreal is thrilled to announce that we will be launching a TEFAQ preparation class starting March 1. The virtual lessons will take place on Saturdays from 9 to 11 a.m. The course will be sold in blocks of 4 or 8 weeks. The first block will cover the Conversation and Oral Expressions component of the exam. The second block will cover Listening. The lessons will be delivered on Microsoft Teams by EC Montreal’s skilled and experienced French instructors. This course is ideal for students who are looking to immigrate to Quebec or who want to improve their French conversation and listening skills. After completing the course, students should be prepared to score a minimum of B2 French language proficiency which is a citizenship requirement. Students interested in the preparation class must have a minimum Pre-Intermediate level of French. Students who have not yet reached this level can participate in EC Montreal’s General Virtual French lessons until they reach the required proficiency. Block 1: March 1 to March 26: TEFAQ Conversation (8 hours) $195 CAD $20 Registration Fee Block 1 & 2: March 1 to April 23: TEFAQ Conversation & Listening (16 hours) $320 CAD $20 Registration Fee Block 2: TEFAQ Listening (8 hours) $195 CAD $20 Registration Fee We require a minimum of three students to run this programme. We are proud to offer the TEFAQ preparation course to our portfolio of other Virtual French programmes delivered on Microsoft Teams.

Throwback Thursday!

This week’s Throwback Thursday are images of EC Montreal’s Student Academic Lecture Series. Our EC Montreal students always impress us with their stellar presentations! Students have a chance to deliver a presentation to the entire school on a subject they are most passionate about. At EC Montreal, we strive to encourage our students to speak English or French with confidence. We teach presentation skills and develop our students’ public speaking through these lecture series. Public speaking is one of the most feared occasions for many. Studies have shown that many fears speaking in front of a crowd more than death. At EC Montreal, we strive to encourage our students to speak English or French with confidence. We teach presentation skills and develop our students’ public speaking through our student academic lecture series. We ask our students to deliver a presentation to the rest of the school about a subject they are most passionate about. We ask their instructor to coach them and prepare them to deliver the presentation. It always amazes us to see our students stand up in front of an audience and speak to a crowd in their second or even their third language. Our students continue to impress us at how quickly they learn and are able to speak with great confidence! We are starting a new year and will be developing our student academic lecture series even further. We thought it would be a great idea to give some helpful tips on public speaking. The most important lesson we can give you is to encourage you to be prepared. Don’t wing your presentations. Plan what you are going to say and use visuals to illustrate your topic. The visuals will keep the audience alert and will reinforce the message you are trying to deliver through your … Read more

Recipe of the Week!

It’s a beautiful sunny day in Montreal and the scenery that surrounds us is absolutely spectacular! We received so much snow over the past weeks that the entire city of Montreal looks like a magical winter wonderland. Although it is a pretty sight, it has been painfully cold this week with temperatures dropping way below zero. If you have the proper winter gear, these the cold weather is more than tolerable, however, when we do return home, we crave warm and comforting food. In our family, we do enjoy a lot more soups these days and the heartier the better. Some days we eat our soup as a meal. One of our favourites is potato soup. It tastes like a fully loaded baked potato! It is an easy recipe to create if you don’t have access to many ingredients. It is also very budget friendly as potatoes are one of the most economical foods to purchase at the grocery store or market. For my version of potato soup, you will need the following ingredients: – 6 large Yukon gold potatoes – 1 large white onion – 1 clove of garlic – 1 cup of diced pancetta – 2 litres of chicken broth – 1 cup of cooking cream – Minced scallions as garnish – Shredded cheddar cheese as garnish – Cubed bacon or pancetta as garnish – Salt and pepper to taste – 4 Tablespoons of olive oil Heat up olive oil in a large saucepan on medium to high heat. Add the onion, pancetta and garlic. Cook it down until softened and pancetta is slightly crisp. Add the diced potatoes and cook them until slightly brown. Add the chicken broth, salt and pepper. Cover the pot and bring it to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and continue to … Read more

City of Montreal’s Snowman Competition!

The city of Montreal has come up with a fun winter contest to get us through the pandemic blues and we are so excited about it! It is a snowman building contest! With all the snow we have been getting in Montreal, it will not be difficult to build incredible creations in this winter wonderland! You may have noticed so many snow sculptures on your way to school. All these impressive creations are part of the contest. We have until March 8, 2021 to enter into the contest. All you have to do is create a sculpture and submit it as an individual, a family or a school to the City of Montreal website entry here: https://concours-bonhommesdeneige.lndg.page/KQdnbM#/accueil. The winners will be judged based on how many votes each entry receives. The winner will also be announced on the City of Montreal Facebook page. There are age categories as well. You can win a $50 gift card as an individual and $350 as a school group. You need to use a Montreal residence address in your submission. You can build your creation in a public park setting or on private property. Wouldn’t it be great to enter a submission on behalf of EC Montreal? We can use the winning $350 towards a group prize. We are asking all EC Montreal students interested in participating in this contest to work on a creation and submit it to the EC Montreal team. We will choose the best one and submit it on behalf of the school. The more entries we have the better chance we have of winning the prize. Tell your homestay hosts about the contest and work on a sculpture together! You can send all your images to EC Montreal’s email address: montreal@ecenglish.com. Please remember when going outside to dress appropriately. … Read more

Yui Takagi From Japan: “This experience has been the highlight of my life…”

Yui Takagi is a lovely student from Japan participating in EC Montreal’s Academic Year Semi-Intensive programme. She began her studies with us at EC Montreal right when we were mandated to go on lock down last March. This did not stop Yui from learning and being extremely enthusiastic about her learning. I still remember our first communication with Yui after she arrived into Montreal. Her homestay host helped with the initial conversation. She did her placement test virtually and continued in her online lessons until EC Montreal reopened on August 31. She has successfully advanced from our elementary level to advanced during these months. Her Upper-Intermediate teacher, Olga, had this to say about Yui; “Yui is super sociable, has made English-speaking friends, is very much interested in photography and has shared some wonderful pictures of Montreal. She has moved to the advanced level at EC because of all her amazing progress!” Yui will continue to study in our advanced level until the end of February. We are so very proud of all the achievements she has realized with us at EC Montreal. Here is what Yui has to say about her EC experience: I am sure nobody feels uncomfortable or has any type of hesitation about “trying” in our class. This is a result of the teachers always making sure we feel relaxed in creating an affable atmosphere. What EC gave me is not only the ability to speak English fluently, but also the opportunity to practice how to break away from passive attitudes and incorporate this attitude to real life. You come to realize the skills you lack and do what is necessary to make up for it. I think this is the perfect place for anybody who needs that push to excel. During the last ten months, the … Read more

Recipe of the Week!

One of EC Montreal’s very popular activity during our January new year’s resolution themed month is our “healthy shake” activity!  It is so much fun and such an interactive activity!  EC Montreal sets up the breakfast bar in the student lounge with four or five blenders and a variety of ingredients.  We have frozen fruit, fresh fruit, bananas, almond milk, yogurt, spinach, carrots, avocados, honey and maple syrup.  All the ingredients are rich in vitamins, nutrients and anti-oxidants.  The students create their own healthy smoothie and get an instant burst of energy! So, in honour of our annual January Healthy Shake Day; I am delighted to share with you my favourite smoothie recipe!  It is a perfect breakfast when you are on the go, a great drink to enjoy on a cleanse day and also acts as a meal replacement when you are too lazy to make dinner! For my smoothie recipe, you will need the following ingredients: 1 cup of frozen mixed berries 1/2 an avocado 2 cups of almond milk 1/2 banana 1 teaspoon of honey 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla Place all the ingredients in a blender and mix until it becomes the consistency of a slushy drink. I hope you will give this recipe a try.  It is full of wonderful brain food that will not only give you a burst of energy but will also keep your brain young!  We will be posting the recipe on Microsoft Teams where you can access your English online lessons as well as all our EC virtual activities. Cheers to healthy and delicious living!

Throwback Thursday!

This week’s Throwback Thursday is from our annual self-defence lessons offered as part of our new year’s resolution themed activities. Many of our students indicated on their snowflake promises for the new year that they wanted to get fit and learn something new.  EC Montreal’s self-defence classes kill two birds with one stone! The self-defence instructor is a professional physical trainer, a black belt in karate, a nutritional consultant and a very animated person!  He and one of his colleagues lead a 45-minute session.  They demonstrate the different moves and carefully observe to make sure everybody is performing the moves accurately to avoid injury.  They make the session entertaining and physically challenging so we can get a very good workout from the experience. We invite them back during our health and fitness themed month in May and also to lead some of our staff team-building activities. These self-defence classes are one of our most popular activities!  We usually have a packed room and everyone really enjoys it!  Everybody comments on how powerful and confident they feel at the end of the class. These activities are a key part of our student experience at EC Montreal.  They give our students wonderful opportunities to interact with one another, practice their language skills, learn something new and have a marvellous time in the process. We cannot wait until we can resume our social gatherings and events at EC Montreal.  For now, we need to keep a safe distance and meet virtually for these type of activities.  Look out for upcoming virtual get-together activities on Microsoft Teams where you can access your English or French online lessons.

Welcome Back!

Welcome back to EC Montreal! Today is our first day back to the centre after the Christmas break. We were meant to resume our face to face lessons on January 4, however, the Quebec government mandated us to go on a temporary lock down to help prevent the spread of the virus. We are so excited to be back and to see our students again! In addition to welcoming back our students we were happy to welcome five new students today from five different countries; Japan, Mexico, Colombia, Libya and Italy! We currently have fifteen different nationalities represented at EC Montreal this week! It is beautiful to see the world coming to us at EC! It doesn’t take long for our students to bond with one another and make lifelong friendships. Even during these difficult times of restrictions, students find a way to connect through the lessons and online. It is important for our students to feel like they are part of a community at EC. We need to stay connected for our overall well-being. As we walk down our corridors at EC Montreal and take a peek inside the classrooms, it warms our hearts to see so many happy students. Everyone is wearing a mask, but you can tell they are smiling as they work on their English and French language skills. The teachers are so animated and enthusiastic and the students so motivated to improve. We can hear laughter and joyful conversations from every single one of our classes. You can begin your language journey with EC Montreal! Our borders are open to essential travellers which include study permit holders. Join us for a winter wonderland adventure with EC Montreal! It is one of the most beautiful times of the year in Montreal! There are so many winter … Read more

Throwback Thursday!

This week’s Throwback Thursday images are of our new year’s resolution themed activities.  Another very popular resolution among our students at the start of every year is getting more exercise.  Through our weekly complimentary activities, were were able to help our EC Montreal students keep this promise.  We organized many different kinds of workouts.  We hired different types of instructors to lead the sessions.  We had muscle training, zumba, aerobics, yoga, self-defence, circuit training, salsa dancing and so many other types of classes! The sessions really set the tone for the start of the new year!  The workout classes were designed in such a way to give our students a safe and fun space to exercise.  By doing the lessons together, our students could see how enjoyable it is to keep our bodies active and how gaining strength also builds confidence and boosts our energy and attitude.  That shot of adrenaline helps with our daily activities, learning and overall mental state. Although we have had to suspend our social gatherings at EC Montreal during the pandemic, the message we continue to relay to our students is the importance of being active and fit.  These are difficult times and it is easy to fall into the trap of being passive and sedentary.  The benefits of exercise not only keep our bodies healthy and strong, but it also fuels our mind and soul.  It changes our mood.  It energizes us and boosts our immune system.  You don’t need a gym to get a good workout.  There are many virtual sessions you can join and you can also get outside and go for a brisk walk, a skate around a rink or a jog around the neighbourhood.  We encourage you to continue to wear a mask, even outdoors, during the winter months, as … Read more

Recipe of the Week!

My husband’s Birthday is coming up later this month and he is one of those people that doesn’t like cake. His favourite dessert is Mexican rice pudding called Arroz con Leche. This is his request every year and it took my quite a few attempts and variations to the recipe to get it just right. You can make a big batch of it in the refrigerator and serve it for dessert, as a snack or even a quick breakfast when you are in a hurry. You don’t need sugar because it is sweetened with the condensed milk. You also don’t need many ingredients so it is perfect for our EC Montreal students who may be on a budget or share a kitchen with homestay hosts or roommates. For my version of Arroz con Leche, you will need the following ingredients: – 7 cups of water – 1 cup of white rice (rinsed) – 2 cinnamon sticks – 1 can of evaporated milk – 1 can of condensed milk – 1 cup of half and half (or whole milk if you prefer) – Cinnamon – A cup of raisins You should first start by rinsing your rice to remove the excess starch. Add your water, rice and cinnamon sticks to a large saucepan and cook on medium heat. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to low and cook for approximately 15 to 18 minutes. Drain the water from the saucepan and remove the cinnamon sticks. Put the rice back in the pot and add all three milks. Keep the temperature on medium-low and stir it frequently so the milk and rice does not burn. Stirring it often will also ensure that the mixture thickens and becomes a creamy consistency. Add the raisins. After the mixture comes to a boil, … Read more