General notes on all our courses
Syllabus and Course Design
- To be appropriate to the needs of the student.
- To have clear details available to both students and teachers as to what will be taught.
- To have clear assessment procedures at beginning, at pertinent stages throughout, and at end of course.
- To include flexibility enabling a student to negotiate with teachers and management to change their class if there is sufficient reason so to do.
- To include flexibility to amend the original syllabus commensurate with class needs.
- To ensure an even balance of language skills whilst devoting extra input to skills perceived as weak at whole-class level.
- To ensure that students have opportunities to discuss their progress with the teachers both through formal procedures and informally at student request.
- To ensure that students have ample opportunity to exercise Learner Autonomy.
- To ensure that courses include homework that reinforces and assists learning and that they have full information as to how they can benefit from self-study, such as information regarding trusted websites etc.
- To ensure that students are given full information as to how best to continue their studies on leaving the school.
- To ensure that all students are given equal attention whilst showing awareness of the needs of both the gifted and the slow learner.
- To ensure that by careful selection of course books and materials there is a fluid transition between General English courses and Examination courses.
- The courses will ensure students have full information regarding application dates, test dates, test centres etc.
- Students will be given extensive practice handling the content and timing of the examinations.
- Students will be given realistic assessments of their readiness for examinations and clear indications of the grades they may realistically achieve.
Activities will take place in or out of the classroom (in this case the majority of excursions will have clear links to the syllabus and involve pre-trip, on-trip and post-trip tasks). Teachers are requested that when a trip has no direct link to the course, that they use the experience for creating useful supplementary tasks. Classes vary in how often they wish to go outside the classroom and students should always be consulted about spending time outside the classroom.
Students are encouraged to do presentations even at elementary level. This helps build confidence and is a very useful skill for university students and in business alike. A short 5-minute talk on any subject followed by a question and answer session can be built into more extensive Presentations involving technology aids at higher levels.
The school operates a Grammar Clinic service whereby students can come along and ask for guidance on any grammatical area they are experiencing difficulty with. This is quite flexible and can, of course, focus on other areas such as writing or speaking.
Every Wednesday afternoon the students have the opportunity to join Coffee Conversation which meets at a local café and is for all levels. This is facilitated by a staff member but is intended to exactly replicate meeting friends for coffee and conversation. This provides an ideal opportunity for students to meet and mix with students of other classes and levels.
This will be given on a daily basis, reviewed in class or marked promptly and returned to students. Class time will be given to working on errors common to the class as a whole.
Weekly tests will be given, focusing on work covered in that week, this can be focused on areas of difficulty experienced by that group or use of pre-made tests, which can be adapted, for course books.
Regular reviewing of coursework will take place with particular attention paid to areas that cause difficulties to that class.
It is hoped that this will be encouraged throughout the school by various means from the lowest levels. Students will have the opportunity to express opinions, voice preferences and make suggestions throughout the course.