Sunday, January 4, 2009

"TESOL at Languages International is more student-focused, is very interactive and involves a lot of teacher-student interaction."

Meet Marcela who, along with other TESOL students, has just finished her TKT (Cambridge Teaching Knowledge Test) and is about to take off on her trip around New Zealand

Q. Where are you from Marcela? And what do you do in your country? A. I am from Jihlava city which is a centre of Vysocina Region in the Czech Republic. I work as a teacher of English at the secondary school.

Q. Congratulations on your successful completion of the TESOL course. What was it like being a student here?
A. I can tell you I had no confidence at the very beginning – I was very shy to speak in front of the audience. Besides, the teaching methods here are so different from what we have at home. TESOL at Languages International is more "student-focused", is very interactive and involves a lot of teacher-student interaction. Another great thing about this course is that our trainers Sam and Jonathan have been so supportive and helpful. I have learned an enormous amount and become a lot more confident about my classroom skills. The feedback was immediate; and the class dynamic was great.

Q. How will your new experience and your TESOL certificate help you when you return home?
A. First of all, I am very keen on trying all these new techniques and methods I have learned once I’m back in Jihlava. I also think that TESOL will help me with my future career development. A teacher with better qualifications and broader experience is highly valued by the employers. In fact, the Czech Ministry of Education has been looking for ways to certify the English teachers in the country and TKT is already gaining a reputation as being a “must do” exam, especially for those working in the state sector.

Q. What was the main reason for you to come to New Zealand and Languages International to do TESOL and TKT?
A. Actually, the only accredited TKT centre in my country is the one in Prague. The school I work for was happy to give me some time off so I could attend one TESOL class per week – however, this would mean I would have to travel to Prague and back every week, which was not ideal. So I thought I’d rather take an extended leave and focus on doing a training course in an English-speaking country. My agent suggested New Zealand and recommended this school. So here I am!

Q. Do you have a favourite place in Auckland?
A. There are lots of special places here – and Albert Park is just one of them. I also like the atmosphere of Mission Bay where I go for a cup of coffee. My host family is in Glendowie so I love having a walk through the native birds’ reserve nearby.

Q. Is there anything you would like to comment on before you leave Auckland?
A. I would just like to thank everyone here for all the care and support and I wish all of you a very Merry Christmas!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

"I was very happy when I studied at Languages International"

Nuttanun Keawin from Thailand– General English (GE) 3 weeks, Christchurch

Everything was good for me. I studied at Languages International for 3 weeks. Although it was a short time, I was very happy when I studied here (at Languages International). Everybody was so good. They were very friendly, and we had a good relationship. The staff at Languages International are very good and helpful. Whenever students need advice or help, they are ready to help us solve problems. They had everything to help me study. When I needed more practice, I could go to the Learning Center for self study. It helped me a lot because this center provided the students with various kinds of materials such as computer programs, books and CDs, which were good for practicing and testing my progress.

Lastly, I would like to thank you, Languages International. Languages International is a good school, and it will always be a good memory, forever.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

"One of the most valuable experiences in my life"

Jinsung Park from Korea – General English (GE) 15 weeks, Christchurch

Hi, my name is Jin and I have studied at Languages International for 15 weeks. It has already been a long time to stay here. Actually, I didn’t like to stay in school when I first came here because I didn’t know anyone and I couldn’t speak English very well, except some vocabulary.

But after I got used to staying in New Zealand and studying here, my English was much better than before, and I had made many friends. Now, I have many friends who come from various parts of the world so I’ve learnt interesting customs, culture and even their basic languages. I think it’ll be remembered in my memory, which could be one of the most valuable experiences in my whole life. And the school offers many different outdoor social activities like horse riding, bowling, surfing, canoeing and even skydiving. It’s fantastic joining the activities with your new school mates.

The other thing I want to tell you about is the Learning Centre where you can study by yourself with lots of useful learning systems. Furthermore, you can enjoy watching DVD’s, reading books and listening to the tapes in there if you want. If you are not sure about grammar,spelling or pronunciation while you study, you can always ask one of the teachers, they are always ready to help you.

Anyway, before I came to Languages International, I had never even thought about going to University in New Zealand, but now my thinking has been completely changed. Not only does Languages International have great facilities and friendly people to help you no matter what you need, the natural environment in Christchurch is gorgeous. So that is why I have decided to stay and go to University here and I would definitely recommend coming to Christchurch if you want to study English in a foreign country.

"Thank you, you taught me so well!"

Lucy from Russia - Languages International Auckland

Hello, I’m Lucy.

I decided to come to New Zealand to study English as a first step to a postgraduate degree. It took me a while to do some research on New Zealand schools to find the one that would suit my circumstances best. Finally, I made a decision to enrol at Languages International School of English. I did it for a number of reasons, such as high standard of teaching, nationality mix, range of courses and the most important one, a possiblity to gain acceptance onto the University. My questions were fully answered by the school’s Russian counsellor. This gave me a clearer picture of the student life at Languages International.

And so my new life in New Zealand began! My biggest challenge was the IELTS test as I was not confident about my level and could not even dream of getting 6.5. The IELTS course was intense, the atmosphere was stimulating and the teachers were extremely supportive. When I look back now I can only smile at myself being so anxious about the exam. Believe me, 7.0 is a totally achievable result for anyone who is prepared to study hard. It has given me great enthusiasm and confidence and has actually helped me to learn.

I am currently doing my Masters Degree at the University of Auckland and loving it! The timetable is very flexible which means I do not have to come to class every day or sit the exams in the end of each term. What I do is collecting material for my Master Thesis, which involves massive research, data processing and experimental analysis of various aspects of human behaviour. Psychology has always been my passion and I hope that one day you might find me lecturing at the University of Auckland!

Thank you Languages International staff, you taught me so well!