At EC San Diego we know that learning English is more than the hard work you do in the classroom; it’s also about all those moments, big and small, that happen after the day ends after school. That is why EC has launched EC at Home, which is yet another opportunity for students to practice their English outside of the classroom. EC at home is a unique offer that gives students extra time practicing and learning English at their current residences. The San Diego homestay English courses are designed to give students up to 4 hours of extra time each week with their teachers in a casual setting. The benefits include 1-2 hours of structured conversation in residences during the weekdays and 1-2 hours outside, exploring the city and using English skills in real-life contexts. Students at EC San Diego meet with teacher Gary weekly, at their apartments in Pacific Beach, to continue the fun and engaging learning experience after school. Below are some photos of students enjoying lessons poolside, eating pizza and playing billiards.
EC San Diego students experienced their fest-ever luxury movie-watching experience at The Lot San Diego. They watched the “Beauty and the Beast” with Teacher Autumn, who had an optional vocabulary activity to go along with it. The students were impressed by the reclining seats and gourmet food options offered at the movie theatres. Students learned new words a new meaning to beauty and love in the eye of the beholder.
One of our Student Ambassadors, Sangdon Byun, otherwise known as Richard, shares with us his EC San Diego student experience: Although his full name is Sangdon Byun, he goes by the name Richard. Richard is from Korea and has been at EC for three months thus far. He arrived at the height of summer in August and was one of the students who attended our “Sunday Experience.” During the Sunday Experience, students are given a walking tour of the surrounding neighborhood of La Jolla, its shops and beaches, by an EC Staff member. After the walk, students are then taken to a popular, Mexican restaurant in the area, Jose’s, for some local, authentic Mexican cuisine. Richard started in an intermediate-English level course and has gone up to pre-intermediate in the three months he’s been studying at EC. His favorite class so far has been the Cambridge course, which he graduated from a few weeks ago. “I liked the Cambridge course the most. My classmates were from Switzerland, and I learned a lot from Swiss students because their English is very good,” he explained. He also enjoys classes with his favorite EC SD teacher, Brian. “Brian is very smart, he helps me a lot and explains things clearly,” Richard added. Since there are a variety of student activities every day and monthly at EC, I asked Richard what his favorite activity has been so far. “I like Homework Club with Teacher Brian on Wednesdays after school. I also like Sports with Nick because I like to play soccer,” Richard said. On every first Tuesday of the month, the Acacemic Director, Nick DiZinno, rallies enough students to form a team and plays a friendly game of Soccer at the cove. This activity has proven to be one of the most popular activities and usually has the highest turn out. Another popular activity with our students is a volunteer opportunity at Casa Loma, which is a …
It’s the day before you leave your home country to explore the beaches of California, and learn English in San Diego at a new school. It’s a long journey, a leap of faith and you have no idea what to expect on your first day at EC San Diego. The nerves are to be expected and they are a strange combination of excitement, fear and anticipation all wrapped into one. These are emotions many EC students know firsthand, including our amazingly, awesome Student Ambassadors! Student Ambassadors are students, who have been at EC San Diego for at least two months, or more, and are knowledgeable of San Diego culture and are very outgoing and friendly. They are the students you want to make friends with to show you around and answer many of the questions that you may be afraid to ask. However, don’t ever hesitate to ask an EC staff member, such as one of the Stent Services Coordinators, your Teachers, Center, or Academic Director. They are always happy to help in whichever way they can. The Student Ambassador, on the other hand, can provide a certain kind of insight, since they were once sitting in your exact same seat on their first day of class. They are well acclimated students and can help get you involved in the EC Experience and the San Diego lifestyle. Unfortunately, we said goodbye to a few student Ambassadors a few weeks ago, so we had to recruit more big personalities that we knew could take on the task at hand! Each student represents their home country and helps the EC team on our first day of school by joining new students on a walking tour of San Diego and provide translation when needed! As of right now, our Student Ambassadors are from the following countries: Korea, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Brazil and Japan. …
Meet our new intern, Kana Hamada, from Japan! Kana is joining us from EC San Francisco where she spent a year as a student learning English at EC San Francisco. The differences between San Diego and San Francisco are apparent, especially the city layout and weather. San Francisco is known for its cold, windy climate while San Diego is known for its year-round sunny weather. Kana enjoyed her time in San Francisco, but this is an entirely new experience for her, mainly because she’s returning to EC as an intern and not as a student. As an intern, Kana’s responsibilities include collecting student documents on intake day, following up with students for missing information, creating sign-up sheets and flyers for student activities, translating and other general admin duties. In her short time here, Kana has already experienced the San Diego Zoo with EC Students and Sea World with her friends. She also recently indulged herself in the American tradition of Black Friday shopping post Thanksgiving , which she very much enjoyed! We are very happy to have her as part of the EC San Diego family! Thank you for everything you do, Kana! We appreciate you! A few words from Kana herself, “Before coming to San Diego, I was a little bit worried. I felt like a complete foreigner and a bit intimated. I was worried about my English skills because I was staying in Japan for three months and during my stay in Japan I was a little bit scared because I didn’t speak English, or write English that much. I’ve been feeling more comfortable here because people are very friendly, nice and easy going. I am more confident speaking English with others, especially when talking to people at bars and cafes.Kana also loves animals, “I am pretty happy because San Diego is …
Last Thursday EC San Diego enjoyed a festive Thanksgiving Potluck Party with students, faculty and staff. Tables were adorned with cut-out turkeys, pumpkins and, of course, tons of delicious food! Students brought home-made desserts and popular dishes from their home countries. EC San Diego supplied traditional, American Thanksgiving treats, such as pumpkin and apple pie. It was a festive feast and a great opportunity for students and staff to get together for a grateful cause and show their appreciation for one another with good food and great company. Students and staff also had the opportunity to share with others what they’re most thankful for by adorning our EC Turkey with “Thankful Feathers” which can be seen in photo above. Prior to the potluck party, EC held a mannequin challenge post graduation ceremony, which can be seen on our Facebook page. A big thank you to everyone who participated in the mannequin challenge and to those who were involved in the Potluck party.
Once a month, EC San Diego students are taken on an adventurous field trip to the world-famous San Diego zoo. Last weekend twenty-two students had the opportunity to visit the zoo for a discounted, student rate. It was an adventurous and fun-filled day with lots of animals and tons of walking! Students enjoyed the free ride on the Skyfari, which took them to the other side of the park and gave them a panoramic view of Balboa Park and Downtown San Diego. The San Diego Zoo houses over 3,700 animals of more than 650 species and subspecies. It is one of the few zoo in the world that houses and successfully breeds the giant panda. Don’t miss out on our Zoo trip next month on Saturday, December 17th!
EC San Diego students in Gary Katz’s advanced class went on a field trip to get a sneak peak into the American voting process in action. Students had the opportunity to observe firsthand the American voting process. To get a better understanding of how the general election works, students took a field trip down to a local polling place to watch and observe people voting. As voters exited the polling place, students approached them on the street and asked voters their opinions on presidential candidates and other ballot initiatives. It was an exciting time for students to be in the United States, since they were able to watch the presidential buzz going on in the media and ask Americans how they felt before, during and after the election.
7 Bridge Walk. By Alessia Mueller, EC San Diego CAE Student It was an unexpected pleasure that the FCE and CAE teachers, Marilyn and Jenny, took their classes on the 7 Bridge Walk in San Diego. Our journey started on a sunny and warm Saturday morning at the Rose Garden in Balboa Park. Our tour guide, Ande, the 2 year old son of Jenny and her husband Thomas, led us through the whole trip and did a good job. We walked through Balboa Park with its impressive surroundings and ended up at the 2nd bridge. This bridge was supposed to be like a bridge in Venice where people could enter a gondola. After seeing the gondola launch, our walk went ahead past the statue of Kate Session and on to Banker’s Hill. This place was impressive. Here we discovered several bridges which are constructed with wood or steel. Finally, we reached a simple suspension bridge where our walk ended. It was a great pleasure to do this walk with our classmates and we had a very good time. It’s an easy walking path which can be done by young and old. it is definitely worth it to walk through the area and discover American bridges. All in all, we have no hesitation recommending this walk. And thanks to Carl, a passionate photographer and husband of Marilyn, our walk was documented.
Students from EC San Diego got their first taste of American tradition and culture during Halloween, not only from the sweets given out, but also from a Spooktacular Halloween party hosted by EC. Faculty and staff dressed up in full, galactic fashion as famous Star Wars characters. Darth Vader and his Storm Troopers stormed the hall taunting students to get involved in the Halloween party and to get into the spirit of the dark side. Students were encouraged to dress up in order to participate in various costume contests and many students went all out with spooky, funny and creative attire. Students enjoyed the dance party, pumpkin carving, cookie decorating and breaking the pumpkin piñata. All in all, it was yet another EC Halloween success!