What an exciting adventure you have embarked on! You’ve enrolled with Embassy English and soon you’ll be moving to a new country to learn English. Everyone has advice for you – what to pack, how to prepare, what to expect, etc. I’m an Academic Manager at Embassy Gold Coast and I have some advice too. Here are four things you SHOULDN’T do when you start your English course at Embassy English.
When you are in a new country and a new school it’s very natural that you would be drawn to other students who come from the same background as you. After all, with so much to adjust to it’s nice to meet people who speak your language and view the world in the same way. But be careful. If you exclusively hang out with friends from your own country you will miss out on a lot.
First of all, you’ll be missing an opportunity to practice English. And isn’t that why you came here?
I mean – you might not have this chance at home. As well as this, mixing with people from diverse backgrounds is a fantastic experience … and an education in itself!
Here’s a hint: when you go to class make sure you sit with people from different countries to yours. You’ll be glad you did.
In your first week of classes you have a lot to adjust to. Everything is different. And depending on which Embassy English campus you’re studying with, the accent might be quite an adjustment too. Many students find their first days a bit overwhelming. Sometimes they think that maybe the class is too hard.
I’ve seen this many times. If you can be patient, you’ll find that within a week or two all this newness will be less intense. And you’ll relax.
And when you relax you’ll find you can absorb much more in your classes. Remember that our academic staff have assessed you and think that this is the right level for you.
I always recommend students wait at least a week before asking to level down. You might be surprised what you’re capable of.
Also, there is a term we use in education called “scaffolding”. This means that you’ll meet the same work many times – but each time it will be in more depth and with more detail. Sometimes your teacher will decide that giving you all the information at first will only confuse you.
Try to relax and trust us … we want you to understand … sometimes it’s enough if you can just understand part of the whole picture for now.
Depending on where you come from, your own educational experiences and your personality, you might be a little bit embarrassed when the teacher asks you to try something new. Maybe it’s help with your pronunciation, or maybe its some new vocabulary, or a language structure which you haven’t used before.
Our classrooms are safe places to try out new skills and play with language. Mistakes are OK!
In fact, they are welcomed! Mistakes help the teachers know exactly how to help you better! And guess what, everybody is making mistakes.
We won’t force you to participate fully – but we really hope you will!
When you first start learning English it is normal (and helpful) to translate things back to your own language. That’s how you’ll first start building your vocabulary.
However by the time you’re in pre-intermediate level, translation stops being helpful. In fact, it will interfere with your learning. The reason is that no language can perfectly translate, and this is particularly true with grammar. In English our sentences are not structured exactly the same way they are in other languages.
It’s not easy to put away your translator, but I encourage you to do it. If you’re stuck on a word – there is a human dictionary in your classroom.
It’s called the teacher! Ask your teacher what this new word or phrase means.
Learning a new language is a really enriching experience. And we all know that travel broadens the mind. We are really looking forward to having you join our fun and practical classes which will launch you on your next adventure.« Previous post
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