LSI Berkeley Shares an International Feast

October 28th, 2014

Here in Berkeley we like to celebrate the beginning of fall in style. All of Berkeley is abuzz with the return of students to courses at the UC Berkeley campus, just as students here at LSI are starting to buckle down.  With so much excitement in the air, we thought it was time for one of our favorite events: a good old fashioned potluck!

October2014PotLunchWith students from over twenty countries sharing food from their hometown, it was a great opportunity to laugh and eat with friends, while also learning a little bit about the incredibly diverse cultures our students come from.  Students, teachers, and staff came together to share a meal that seemed to never end.  Some of the favorite contributions were: empanadas and brigadeiro from Brazil, risotto from Switzerland, sushi from Japan, latkes from New York City, a pineapple cake from Taiwan, and so much more!

As if this wasn’t enough fun for one Friday afternoon, we also got to celebrate the birthday of one of our most loved and appreciated teachers, Andrew Peritore.  Andrew contributes so much to LSI, both inside and outside the classroom, and it was great to see him honored by the whole school at once.  Though we might have all grown a couple belt sizes, we couldn’t be more excited to share the fall with such an amazing group of students.  And now on to Halloween!

August Feature Destination – LSI Vancouver

October 28th, 2014

The New Management Team at LSI London Hampstead

October 27th, 2014

We’d like to extend a warm LSI welcome to our new school director and assistant director at LSI London Hampstead, Maggie Carruthers and Kat Holloway.

From left to right: Kat Holloway and Maggie Carruthers

From left to right: Kat Holloway and Maggie Carruthers

Maggie Carruthers, our new school director, comes to us after seven and half years working as a school director for Kaplan in southern Brazil. Despite her rather Scottish sounding surname, Maggie actually hails from Brazil but has spent several years in London. With a CELTA, a BA in Law, and a Masters in International Law under her belt, Maggie is highly qualified and with a total of  14 years working in EFL as a teacher, senior teacher, academic director and school director, can call upon a vast amount of experience for her new role with LSI. Despite a busy schedule, Maggie still finds time to study for the diplomat exams, her long term goal being to work as a diplomat in Afghanistan.

Maggie: ” I want to make a difference to people’s lives , which is one of the reasons I love teaching. As a diplomat though , especially somewhere like Afghanistan,  I feel I could really help to change people’s lives for the better .”

Our new assistant school director, Kat Holloway,  also has plenty of international experience and excellent EFL credentials with both DELTA qualifications and a Masters in English. Earlier customer focussed roles included advising on unforgettable gap years for eager but often inexperienced students, looking for their first independent, global adventure. In Kat’s first ever teaching role, she was thrown straight in at the deep end. She spent 18 months working in Taipei teaching students ranging from the Kindergarten all the way up to international businessmen, surely a challenge even for the most experienced teacher!

Kat flourished though and was soon looking for a fresh challenge. Moving to Madrid, she worked at both the Chester School of English and Hylands working as a teacher, then teacher trainer and finally during the last year as the Director of Studies.  Kat is really happy about her move to London.

Kat: “I’m sure I’m going to love living in London, there’s always so much to do. The atmosphere at LSI is so friendly so I know I’m  going to love working here and being part of the LSI London Hampstead team. ”

Welcome on board guys!

A Fond Farewell to Sally

October 27th, 2014

On Friday 24th October  school director, Sally Muse, said a sad farewell after seven years at LSI London Hampstead. It was a poignant moment for all the staff at the school  as Sally has become such an established and valued member of the Hampstead team.

It only seems like yesterday when the then school director Tania  announced that one of our newly appointed teacher’s was a dead ringer for American actress Cameron Diaz – that was our introduction to Sally!

Sally being presented with the photo

Sally being presented with the photo


An amazing teacher ( student feedback can’t be wrong !), and highly driven, Sally studied for both  her DELTA and a  Masters in TESOL whilst working as both a teacher and then Assistant School Director at London Hampstead. At times it’s been gruelling as Sally worked hard,  putting in long hours to achieve the highest standards in both her work and studies – successfully so in both cases. Her highly professional approach was recognised by our management team and when the previous school director Greg relocated to our school in Berkeley,  Sally was the natural choice to replace him.

On Friday the staff at Hampstead organised a little ‘goodbye’ party. Just to ensure that she won’t be  forgetting us too quickly, Sally was presented with a fun ‘class’  photo of  the LSI London Hampstead staff ( in there younger days !)

” I’ve had a wonderful time at London Hampstead, ” commented Sally.  “I’ve learnt so much and have had so much support from my colleagues. That’s what I’m going to miss most – the staff and the students but I’m so excited about starting out  on a new phase of my life.”

From everyone at LSI we wish Sally well with her upcoming wedding and plans to pursue a  career in EAP in a university setting back in her home town of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.

LSI New York end of month Pizza Party!

October 13th, 2014

On the last Thursday of every month at LSI New York we throw a Pizza Party at lunch time. Students and teachers come together and socialize for a fun hour. Every month teachers nominate a Student-of-the-Month; this student is chosen based on overall academic performance and advancement, excellent attendance, helpfulness to other students, amongst other things.

At this last pizza party in September we tried something different: in the week running up to the event we patrolled the halls and handed out raffle tickets to anyone speaking English. We called this our Caught Speaking English event. At the pizza party a raffle was drawn and the winners walked away with Yankee baseball caps, I Love NY Tees and two $50 gift certificates for any event offered by ISX, the student travel company that organizes weekend and day trips for students in the NY area.

Fun was had by all, as seen in the pictures on our facebook page. Here is just a sample of some of our students eating pizza and winning prizes!

Eating pizza and making new friends, New York style!

Eating pizza and making new friends, New York style!

Pizza pizza pizza!

Pizza pizza pizza!

Students enjoying pizza

Students enjoying pizza

Our English speaking raffle prize draw rewarded students for speaking English in between classes

Our English speaking raffle prize draw rewarded students for speaking English in between classes

More prizes from our raffle!

More prizes from our raffle!

Students won t-shirts in our English speaking raffle draw

Students won t-shirts in our English speaking raffle draw

More pizza!

More pizza!

LSI New York students enjoying pizza together

LSI New York students enjoying pizza together

Feature Destination – Brisbane

September 9th, 2014

This month we would like to share some information about lovely Brisbane, where LSI has a centrally located school.

LSI Brisbane class

 

Here are some quick facts that you may not know about Brisbane:

  • It’s the 3rd largest city in Australia with a population of approx. 2.2 million
  • Brisbane is a very young city – only 189 years
  • The G20 are meeting in Brisbane in November this year
  • The streets of the CBD look like a grid from above. They are named after members of the Royal Family. The “male streets” run from southeast to northwest and the “female streets” run from southwest to northeast
  • Brisbane has some of Australia’s tallest buildings
  • The climate is subtropical – the winter is wonderfully warm in Brisbane, with the temperature during the day usually sitting around 22-24 degrees Celsius
  • Some of Australia’s highest rated universities are in Brisbane: Griffith University, the University of Queensland and Queensland University of Technology
LSI Brisbabe building

LSI Brisbabe building

Central Brisbane park with city skyline

Central Brisbane park with city skyline

Brisbane River and City Skyline

Brisbane River and City Skyline

Sports in a central park, in mid-winter!

Sports in a central park, in mid-winter!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are some top things we recommend you do/visit while you’re in Brisbane!

“Brisbane Powerhouse” – more than just an arts venue, it’s an essential Brisbane destination – so many things to see and do, music, comedy, theatre, cabaret, visual arts, installation work, food and drinks overlooking the snaking Brisbane River… all situated within the historical building originally built in the 1920s as a powerstation and renovated in 2000.

Brisbane powerhouse

Brisbane powerhouse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Original Live Music Scene – pioneers of the Punk Era THE SAINTS hailed from Brisbane not to mention the Bee Gees, Savage Garden and Powderfinger.  Brisbane is teeming with live music venues, from boutique style stages to major concert venues.

The music scene in Brisbane

The music scene in Brisbane

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gallery Of Modern Art – this world class art gallery is a building filled with light and space and is a work of art in itself… hosting a huge range of exhibitions, arthouse cinema and next to the Queensland State Library on the bank of the Brisbane River.

Goma, or the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane

Goma, or the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary – you are allowed to hold a koala, the only animal sanctuary in Australia where this is permitted.

The famous koala!

The famous koala!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunshine & Gold Coasts – just an hour’s drive either way from Brisbane are Australia’s best beaches and national parks, and just a few hours further north is the beginning of the utterly unique Great Barrier Reef.

The Gold Coast

The Gold Coast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’d love to see you at LSI Brisbane!

Family program at LSI San Diego

September 5th, 2014

Twice a year we run a family program in conjunction with our Juniors program at LS San Diego. This is an opportunity for families with children as young as 8 to study along with their older siblings and parents. The younger students are in classes with other students of 8 – 12 years of age, the 13 – 17 year olds participate in the juniors program, and the parents can choose to join any one of our regular adult programmes. The 8 – 17 year olds have English classes in the mornings and afternoon activities in and around San Diego. This year was our most successful family program ever, with the class running for the entire summer session at near capacity. Students from Brazil, Mexico, Kazakhstan, Japan, China, Saudi Arabia and Switzerland participated and had a great time, both in class and on activities. Here are some photos of our July/August program! If you’d like more information, please contact LSI San Diego!

LSI San Diego Juniors at the playground

Juniors at the playground

Juniors on the ferry

Students at the chalkboard

Juniors at a baseball game

LSI Toronto celebrates World Student Day

August 21st, 2014

August 8 was World Student Day in Canada.  This event, organised by Languages Canada, was held in cities all across the country.  It was a beautiful summer day and a great chance for LSI students to go to the University of Toronto and meet students from other language schools for a day of games, talent shows, and food.  Five of our LSI Toronto students volunteered for “Make Your Mark on the World”, where students could write their names on a map of the world. We’re looking forward to the next one!

Here are some photos of our students participating in the day’s activities:

Food, games, and fun with friends!

Food, games, and fun with friends!

Food, games, and fun with friends!

Food, games, and fun with friends!

Food, games, and fun with friends!

Food, games, and fun with friends!

An LSI student makes her mark on the world

An LSI student makes her mark on the world

Our LSI student volunteers at World Student Day

Our LSI student volunteers at World Student Day

LSI Toronto Junior Programmes

August 21st, 2014

At LSI Toronto, our junior programmes are a great way for students to improve their English, meet new friends from other countries, and visit the attractions that Toronto has to offer.   Students have English classes in the mornings and afternoon and weekend activities, accompanied by an LSI teacher.   This summer, as well as junior students from Portugal, France, Spain, Poland, Croatia, and Mexico, we welcomed a group of students and their group leaders from China, who went on a sightseeing tour of Niagara Falls and French Canada after their programme at LSI before heading home.

We have winter junior programmes available for groups in January/February, and our summer programme is open for individuals and groups. Come join us at LSI Toronto and improve your English while meeting friends from all over the world!

Here are some photos of what our juniors have been up to:

Canoeing on Lake Ontario

Canoeing on Lake Ontario

Making new friends from different countries

Making new friends from different countries

Making new friends from different countries

Making new friends from different countries

Chinese junior students receiving their LSI certificates at graduation, with their group leaders and teachers

Chinese junior students receiving their LSI certificates at graduation, with their group leaders and teachers

LSI Paris recent student activities

August 8th, 2014

Our students at LSI Paris have really been enjoying the summer months and getting out and about to see some of Paris. Activities have included visits to:

Père Lachaise cemetery: the biggest cemetery in Paris – home of the graves of major celebrities such as: Guillaume Apollinaire , Honoré de Balzac , Maria Callas, Frédéric Chopin, Eugene Delacroix, Isadora Duncan, Paul Eluard, Jean de la Fontaine, Molière, Yves Montand, Jim Morrison, Édith Piaf, Camille Pissarro, Marcel Proust, and Oscar among others.

Carnavalet Museum: a Museum dedicated to the history of Paris, with beautiful paintings, sculptures, and photography.

Opéra Garnier: the famous Paris major opera house

If you’re interested in exploring this wonderful city, come and study with LSI in Paris

Here are some photos of our students out and about in Paris:

 

Students in front of the famous Sacre Coeur

Enjoying the views of Paris

Checking out the museums

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Enjoying discovering the city and making new friends