Karina Bailey has been teaching at our school in Melbourne for just over a year and has already achieved great things! This month, Karina won Embassy’s Student Experience Award, awarded for her dedication and her innovative teaching. Below Karina shares some of her top tips on how to improve your English in Melbourne and reveals some of her favourite places to hang out.
I love that I get to spend my days meeting incredible people from all over the world.
I like to think I help each and every one of my students achieve their goals. But a special moment for me is my one-on-one classes. I work with students to improve their English for their goals. For example, to get to university, to speak with native speakers or to use English at work.
One student was very shy and wanted to make friends with native speakers. He also wished to be promoted in his company so he could work with their American clients. I helped him learn vocabulary and practice speaking which really built up his confidence. One day, I took him for a surprise lunch with my American friend. He was so excited and practised speaking to my friend and asking him questions. A month after this student went back to Japan, he was promoted! He now works as the head of the American section of his company! It was lovely to hear. I also had a student make a beautiful collage of photos from my classes. It was really beautiful.
We have a beautiful, vibrant new campus with wonderful technology. Our classrooms all have SmartBoards which allow us to create fun and exciting lessons. There are plenty of spaces for students to relax and meet with each other.
I love chocolate so there is a wonderful a café across the road which has delicious Nutella hot chocolates and milkshakes! It’s a great place to spend your break. We are also located in the heart of the CBD and close to many tram and train lines. This means that after class you can go into the city for shopping, food or catch a tram to the lovely beach suburb St. Kilda.
I recommend that you start getting to know our city. I would visit Federation Square. It’s next to the main train station, Flinder’s Station. From Federation Square, you can go to many places in the CBD. You can walk along the Yarra River or sit in the sun and have a coffee or a beer. There is a ‘City Circle Tram’ No. 35 that travels around the main parts of the city and shows you many tourist spots! Also transport in the CBD has a free-zone! But you should get a Myki card if you want to leave the CBD. This is how we use trams, trains and buses.
Speak to people as much as possible! The more practice you get, the better you will become. There are many events in the city that allow you to make friends with local English speakers. A great app for making friends in a new city is ‘MeetUp.com’. It’s also very easy to make friends at Embassy because there are many wonderful classmates from many different countries with whom you can speak English.
Our staff are wonderful people! They are friendly and out-going. They will help with any questions about English but also about life in Melbourne. They are always happy to talk with you so don’t be afraid to talk to them anytime about anything! They are wonderful people to work with. We all get along very well and spend our free time together too! Come say hello!
I could speak forever about Melbourne’s food. The most amazing thing about Melbourne is that we are very multicultural. We have food from all over the world! Locals also love having ‘brunch’. It’s a combination between breakfast and lunch. This photo was taken at Docklands which is about a 15 min walk from our centre. Their gelato place is delicious and has many flavours. In the summer, we also have Night Markets on Wednesdays with food stalls from different countries. It is also very close to the school.
‘Bringing English to Life’ is an amazing program that allows students to use the English they learn in class in real-world situations. This enables students to speak with local English speakers and feel confident in their skills. And the best part is that it is really fun! We have weekly events where students can visit new places, meet new friends, see more of Melbourne and, of course, practise their English!
This programme is really beneficial for students because it allows students to see how the things they learn in class can be used in everyday situations. It also gives them the confidence to speak with locals. This week, my students are going to the markets to make a news programme! They are going to interview shop owners and customers and then use reported speech to discuss what they have learnt.
Skedaddle. It sounds funny when you say it! It’s an informal way of saying ‘leave quickly’.
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