Friday 30 January 2015

February Calendar for Valentine Vocabulary ♥♥♥

Continuing with our monthly vocabulary calendar - here is February.

Download and print our monthly calendar - pin it up,  learn all the phrases and by the end of the year you will have an even bigger vocabulary range!
For February our theme is... Love and Valentine's Day!  This is the month of romance, so here are the phrases you might need.

Thursday 29 January 2015

Teaching the Teachers - LSI teachers learning Arabic

Teaching the teachers - Tuesday's class
In the blog we posted a couple of weeks ago, we showed how many of our teachers speak other languages.  We are very fortunate to have on the staff quite a few bi-lingual / completely fluent speakers of other languages. 

So we recently asked our teachers if they would like the opportunity to learn another language, and we got a resounding YES.  

We decided to start off with lessons in Arabic and the lovely Arif has very kindly agreed to be the teacher,
running two beginner Arabic classes in the evenings.  A great chance for the teachers to be on the other side of the desk. The teachers are finding it very challenging, but so far are very enthusiastic. Not so sure about the homework but so far they are being good students ;-)

Teacher: Arif dressed for the
Showing the teachers how its done ;-) 

Teaching the teachers - Thursday's class

Friday 23 January 2015

Going to New Heights (with a monkey) - The DELTM Course

As LSI continues to grow, so has the importance it places on personal development.  We recently wrote about five of our teachers who are following an inhouse DELTA course.  As well as this, LSI is sending three of its staff to London once a month to follow the DELTM course run by English UK.
Lea Brophy (Vice Principal) Lewis Richards (Exams Director of Studies) and Sue Hodgson (Assistant Director of studies - Executive).  Below is a brief outline of the course from the English UK website;

"This course provides excellent professional development for managers and aspiring managers of language centres, and is run by English UK and validated by Trinity College London.
The course focuses on management at three levels: routine, tactical and strategic, and is run by George Pickering, Terry Phillips and Keith Harding.
It runs in London from September to June, with ten monthly face-to face sessions, and a requirement to complete five 3,500-word assignments and a 5,000-word project. These are practical, with a theoretical underpinning".
The guys below have just completed their third assignment, and as the photo shows are having a great time in London with the other participants (plus a monkey - used during the course to visually explain a point).
From left: Lea, Lewis, Sue, (Monkey), George (Pickering)
English UK Visit website

Thursday 15 January 2015

Saying Goodbye to Bill

Bill Phillips is almost part of the fabric of the school - teaching at LSI since 1994, always with a smile on his face. He is known by his (trademark) bow ties and his catch phrases, for example: 
‘You are like a mother to me’ 
'Let's go kick a*** baby'
'Good morning Officer!' to quote just a few.  Often you can hear him sing little songs on the stairs and in the staff room (and often forgetting the second line ;-).
Over the years, Bill has had a habit of bringing little plants, treats and goodies and leaving them on the side for teachers to take, and it’s probably true to say over the years that everyone has benefitted either from a piece of cake, a small plant or spare pencil case thanks to Bill.

Originally Bill worked in the Immigration Service, but decided to teach English because of his love of language.  You can often find Bill, along with a few other ‘grammarians’ in the staff room, discussing / disagreeing (usually disagreeing) about the correct usage of a piece of language.  That's when he isn't having a quick nap at lunchtime ;-)

Having taught for such a long time, we asked Bill what guidance he would give to someone thinking about going into teaching  “Don’t even think of doing this job unless you like people” he said, which from someone who ‘loves communicating with a smile’ seems like a very salient piece of advice.

Bill kindly agreed to come on camera and talk about some of the memorable moments from the past 20 years, Thank you Bill, we are really going to miss you.

(Bill, I still use the pencil case you gave me 19 years ago! - Sue H)

Bill cutting his delicious cakes!

Thursday 8 January 2015

How Many Languages Can You Speak?

It's true to say that the teachers you find in a language school are probably a different breed to most workers you'll find anywhere else.  At LSI our particular teachers are a multi-talented group of artists, musicians, sporty people, entertainers and authors to mention just a few of the skills.  The question came up the other day 'what other languages do we all speak'?  So, we conducted a very quick (non scientific) survey of the 50 teachers available at the time, asking which languages they spoke in addition to English, at a level of low intermediate and above.  The languages spoken range from Arabic to Chinese!  As you can see from the results below, not only are we multi-talented, we are also massively multi-lingual!

Click on the picture to see full size

What is interesting to see is that, according to this (very interesting) article which talks about the average number of languages spoken by the EU population, as a group, we are by no means representative of the country we live in, and are in fact, way above average! Which is always nice to know! 

We'd love to hear your comments - how many languages do you speak? What are the advantages in speaking other languages? Which is the most beautiful language to listen to?

January Vocabulary Calendar

Starting this month - download and print our monthly calendar - pin it up,  learn all the phrases and by the end of the year you will have an even bigger vocabulary range!
For January our theme is... Feeling Sick!  Every one seems to get sick in January, so here are the phrases you might need.

Click the picture to get the full size to print.

Tuesday 6 January 2015

Pre-sessional Leaving Ceremony Last day of term 2014

We were very proud of our latest group of Pre-sessional students, seen here at their leaving ceremony on the last day of term in December.  They all worked so hard and now they have had a break will be going on to continue their studies in their chosen fields.  We would like to wish them all the very best for their futures.