Teacher Karl on TOEFL Courses in San Francisco

  It is known that EC is the place for taking TOEFL courses in San Francisco.  Teacher Karl absolutely agrees!  Take a look at what he has to say about teaching TOEFL courses: “The TOEFL is the test for foreign student admissions to US universities and many certificate programs, and is gaining popularity as a general test of English in some parts of the world.  For many students, a high TOEFL score is seen as a necessity for the life path they have charted.  At EC San Francisco, we work with students to give them the tools they will need to maximize their effectiveness while taking the test.  Anyone who says they can guarantee you a particular score is lying.  ETS (the company that owns TOEFL) spends millions of dollars to make sure no student can predict the test, or use any kind of formula to develop high-scoring answers.  However, a good school, such as EC San Francisco, can guide students toward skill development and test-taking strategies that will maximize their success.                 The foundation for a good TOEFL score is a good working knowledge of general English.  Since the test assesses all skills, effectiveness on the test depends on being able to function comfortably in all areas of English.  Within the context of TOEFL preparation, therefore, while we obviously work on learning how the test works, and what approaches will produce the best outcomes, we also continue to work on the development of each student’s overall English through ongoing Communicative Approach activities.  Our goal is that students not only come out of the course with more confidence about the test, but with a clear improvement in their ability to use English as members of a global community of English speakers.”

Meet Mayu, our new intern from Japan!

  EC San Francisco has recently had the pleasure of welcoming a new intern, Mayu Okazaki, from Japan.  Mayu will be with us for one year.  Since her arrival, Mayu has hit the ground running, interacting with students, explaining the difference between each program and courses, such as TOEFL courses in San Francisco and even leading activities by herself.  We are very happy to have her on our team.  Here are a few words from Mayu : “Hi, I’m Mayu Okazaki from Japan. My hobbies are running, hiking and eating. I graduated from Tohoku University in Japan. My major was geophysics, mainly focusing on oceanography and meteorology. I also got a teaching certificate when I finished the university. I used to work for an elementary school, a private school and a university to help some students as a part time job when I was a master student. I was getting interested in working in education field during this time. I have worked at Tama University as an office assistant for 2 years. Before that I used to work at Japanese IT company as a Systems Engineer. My life is so diverse so far. I wanna support exchange students at another university in Japan using English and understanding various cultures and student’s feelings. In order to get a job like in what I want to do, I really wanted to know about working abroad in education field and feelings of exchange students who stay abroad and also learn to speak English more. So, I came here to work as an intern!! I couldn’t choose the city to work but I think San Francisco invited me!! I really look forward to learning and I also want to try doing everything I can.”

Meet Teacher Andy!

  In recent months, there have been several changes in teaching staff here at EC San Francisco.  One of our new additions is Teacher Andy. Here’s a little bit about him: Andrew White is new to EC but is no novice to the ESL industry.  He has been teaching English as a Foreign language for more than 7 years and his experience includes teaching exam prep classes such as TOEFL and Cambridge (CAE and FCE), high level classes and he is particularly passionate about teaching history and culture. Since joining EC in December 2016, Andy has taught Pre Advanced and Advanced, Upper Intermediate and TOEFL preparation. Outside of teaching, Andy is a sports fanatic and often spends his time on a mountain bike, hiking the Headlands or playing tennis. We are super happy to have Andy on-board and can’t wait to get him on more classes once the summer season hits!  So, if you’re looking for TOEFL courses in San Francisco, ECSF is the place to be!!!

ESL storyboard activities

ESL Storyboard Activities for Writing: Marc’s Story

Using ESL storyboard activities, such as the free website software from storyboardthat.com, can help students visualize and create their stories. Storyboards are especially helpful in writing using sequential transition signal words and increasing descriptive adjectives. Using storyboards in the classroom will help motivate students to write their best story yet. Everyone in the park stopped their activities and stared into the sky because NASA started a secret moon rocket project. The big white rocket started miles away from the park but it was very high in the sky, and all the people could see it. Meanwhile, there was a very loud noise in the city because of the rocket. Not long after, the people saw that the rocket began to burn. Finally, it crashed into a house. Next, the people were screaming and it started to make the public panic. Also, the earth was quaking. Children were crying and the parents felt scared. Eventually all astronauts died in this crash, as well as the people who lived in the house in which the burning rocket crashed. Then, I heard an alarm clock and I got up from my bed. Now I realized it was just a dream. Marc-Andrae Alt studies General English at EC San Francisco. Have fun and learn English in USA!

March into Spring, Spring into March

EC San Francisco March 2015 Activities Calendar There is so much more to studying English at EC San Francisco besides English courses. Check out our event calendar for March 2015. There are plenty of outdoor activities on the calendar. San Francisco English School will be taking students on a variety of activities with teachers and student ambassadors. All accompanied activities in orange require a 5 student minimum, so it’s very important to sign up. There’s a sign-up sheet at the Front Desk. Pay for tickets and weekend trips at the front desk. If you have any questions, please speak to Jessica. Some of the highlights for this month include a Golden State Warriors Basketball Game versus the Los Angeles Lakers. Tickets are running out, so get yours sooner rather than later. Some of the outdoor activities include Circus Day and hiking the beautiful trails near Land’s End. You can see some amazing views of San Francisco’s coastline. We have some great activities planned for you this month. We encourage students to join as many events as they can to increase exposure to English-speaking opportunities and environments.  Classes in blue and activities in orange are free of charge! Please ask the front desk for more information.  

Global Citizen’s Trivia Day at the Sequoias

Hi Students and readers, Today the students of EC San Francisco’s Global Citizen elective class had another great visit to the Sequoias, one of the best retirement communities in San Francisco. Our current class is made up of a great mix of nationalities, including students from Japan, Taiwan, Colombia, Italy, Switzerland, Spain, and Saudi Arabia. They got to speak to many wonderful people of diverse backgrounds, including former teachers, judges, nurses and more. One resident we visited with today has even visited over one hundred countries! For this visit the theme was trivia, from San Francisco to pop culture. The students were surprised at how knowledgeable many of the residents were about pop culture and entertainment, but I suppose it should be expected in a place as diverse as San Francisco. I was especially surprised at how much new vocabulary the students learned, which was extra nice considering that they all belong to the higher English level classes. Attending EC San Francisco offers the students many unique and memorable experiences, from tours of California to making connections with different cultures. Today was their opportunity to connect and learn from great people with immense amounts of wisdom and experience. We at EC San Francisco wish you all a safe and fun Independence Day weekend! Teacher Tim