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ESL schools or NOT???

 
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peanutnut



Joined: 26 May 2008
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 9:12 pm    Post subject: ESL schools or NOT??? Reply with quote

Hello, everyone!
I wanna travel to Canada next year (or USA... haven't made up my mind yet) to learn English, but I'm facing a dilemma: should I attend an ESL course or try to find another way to learn it with native speakers?

I'm asking it because a friend of mine said that ESL courses are not very good, because once you're among other students, you don't get in touch with the real English.

I know that if I choose this option, I will get the chance to practice English with my host family and all, but since I wanna take an intensive course, I have to consider that I'll spend more time with other students.

And if I decide to mingle with natives, I don't know what kind of thing I should join. Do you guys have any suggestions?

I'm very confused!
What do you think?
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peanutnut



Joined: 26 May 2008
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 7:23 pm    Post subject: help! Reply with quote

Anyone, please?!?!

I really wanna know what you guys think!

Thank you all in advance!
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Corey



Joined: 23 Mar 2003
Posts: 445
Location: Costa Rica

PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Peanut,

From my point of view, it depends very much on the school. If you are in a large class of 20-25 students then it could be difficult to get good feedback and practice.

To maximize your practice time I would also consider a school with an activities program that offers homestay with a native English-speaking family.

If you decide to try and mingle with native English-speakers in your country you could always join a club like Toastmasters where you can practice public speaking.

Good luck,

Corey
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peanutnut



Joined: 26 May 2008
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Corey, I would like to thank you for posting your opinion!
I've never had heard about this "Toastmaster club" thing, but I searched on the web what it was about and I found it very interesting!!!
Thanks a lot!
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fletchgqc



Joined: 12 Jan 2009
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 2:44 am    Post subject: Language School has advantages and disadvantages Reply with quote

I pretty much agree with Corey. The most important thing is to get to know natives. If you do an intensive course where you spend a lot of time with others from foreign countries, then you will naturally end up socialising with them outside your course. This is OK if they don't speak your language fluently and if you are just starting, but since you are already fluent it's better to be with natives else you could pick up the errors of others.

Homestay sounds great. I work in a sort of similar-but-reverse situation at a language school in Spain which teaches Spanish to foreigners. We exclusively teach private classes and also have a majority of Spaniards learning English and other languages, both of these factors avoid the problem described above. Maybe you should look for private lessons? As to the other issue I doubt you would have much luck as unfortunately in most English-speaking countries I suspect 90-100% of the students will be foreigners learning English. Canada might be better, especially nearer to the French-speaking section, but that is purely guesswork on my part.

Regards,
Mark
Occasional ponderings about learning Spanish in Spain
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ninah05



Joined: 07 Apr 2009
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 9:24 am    Post subject: Check out my post Reply with quote

Hi!

I am studying in New York at Berlitz in Rockefeller Center. It's great because the classes are small (max 6 students). It's all discussion...no boring grammar or writing explanations. Since the class is small everyone gets a chance to speak and practice. The method the school uses is meant to teach how to communicate in English. A lot of my classmates had advanced grammar skills but they couldn't say a word...so it's great to improve your speaking skills. Plus you learn real English not English of books... Check it out...www.berlitz.us....

Best,

Ninah Very Happy
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idrva



Joined: 18 Aug 2011
Posts: 1
Location: Fairfax, VA USA

PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:54 am    Post subject: Try Virginia or Washington DC in the USA Reply with quote

Hi Peanut!
It really depends on you. ESL schools definitely help but it's up to you to go out and practice with natives. Your professor will be a native most probably. Your classmates will help you improve your English as well. As long as they are not from the same country as you. I know a school that teaches English in Virginia which is right next to Washington DC. Here is their English schools site. http://elp.viu.edu
Living with a host family will help as well but I think the best way is making friends and hanging out with them.
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Ian Coldwell



Joined: 17 Sep 2011
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 11:41 am    Post subject: ESL school or not - the BIG question Reply with quote

Hi Peanut,

This is always a problem. I remember a friend who sent his two kids to England to learn English. When they came home after a month my friend told me that his kids had really improved their Spanish
!!
If you really want to improve your English language well it's important to check that your school has a policy of not having having more than two people from the same language background in each class. In the real world there are millions of non-native speakers of English who use English everyday. So it's not a bad thing to be in contact with different non-native speakers. BUT ...... it is absolutely essential to get as much quality contact with native speakers. Through your school, see if you can join in local cultural events, sports, theatre etc. If you can get to stay with a host family make sure that it is a family who try to get you involved in their family life. If they just treat you as a paying guest and nothing more, ask your school to find another family for you.
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We want to show and encourage others how to effectively improve their language acquisition to enable better communication www.learnenglishlanguagewell.com
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longshikong



Joined: 14 Jan 2012
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 4:16 am    Post subject: Re: Check out my post Reply with quote

ninah05 wrote:
It's all discussion...Plus you learn real English not English of books... Check it out...www.berlitz.us....


Then it's not Berlitz. Mad
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Stephanie S



Joined: 16 Jan 2013
Posts: 52

PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 4:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It really depends on you and your learning technique. I personally like to study on my own, but many people find it helpful to have the support and structure of a classroom. I work at an English school in Malta, and every year hundreds of students come here for that reason. Think about your past experience: what have been the circumstances around the seasons of best learning for you? If you do decide to go to a school, definitely try to choose one with small class sizes, separation of nationality in class and accommodation, and emphasis on excellent teaching. Of course, we would be happy to have you here. Wink Elanguest English Language School, Malta
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Afra



Joined: 10 Jul 2013
Posts: 131

PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:36 am    Post subject: Re: ESL schools or NOT??? Reply with quote

peanutnut wrote:
Hello, everyone!
I wanna travel to Canada next year (or USA... haven't made up my mind yet) to learn English, but I'm facing a dilemma: should I attend an ESL course or try to find another way to learn it with native speakers?

I'm asking it because a friend of mine said that ESL courses are not very good, because once you're among other students, you don't get in touch with the real English.

I know that if I choose this option, I will get the chance to practice English with my host family and all, but since I wanna take an intensive course, I have to consider that I'll spend more time with other students.

And if I decide to mingle with natives, I don't know what kind of thing I should join. Do you guys have any suggestions?

I'm very confused!
What do you think?


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