Posts Tagged ‘LSI London Hampstead’

CEO of LSI Interviewed by Pie News

Tuesday, January 10th, 2017

Pie News, a website dedicated to news about International Education, recently approached the CEO of LSI, David Immanuel, to discuss his views on a range of topics from LSI’s background and future plans, the recent company merger, and the current issues and  trends in the Language Training Industry. Here are just a few snippets of the topics discussed.

DavidImmanuelPieNewsBlog

Pie News: How many language schools do you have now? And how has it changed since you started in 1970?

David Immanuel: We have 14 schools. And of course I also have the prep school. We started with two schools in London and Paris, and I’ve gradually built it up – the next one came in Germany, but you could say that my first serious language school was Berkeley in 1979.

When we organised the school, we modelled it on the Berlitz style of one to one teaching of foreign languages and we did quite well during the 70s, but then gradually English took over and for us the foreign language business in the UK shrank. We still do teach some foreign languages to a few companies but it’s a very minor, minor part of it now.

And if you had said to me then I would have been doing it 46 years later, I’d have been shocked.

Pie News: You recently acquired LTC. Is finding schools and acquiring them now is that part of your strategy for expansion?

David Immanuel: Well it’s slightly opportunistic ,… We work with strong individuals – the merger is going well. The [LTC] London school has closed by agreement, so we have by default inherited some of the business. I would definitely be interested in other opportunities if  they [mergers] came about, not only over here [UK] but also in the United States

Pie News: We often hear stakeholders say that general English is dead – nobody’s interested in it. But others say English remains their biggest seller. Which is the case for you?

David Immanuel: Yes, I mean it’s our core business. It’s been our strongest year ever in Canada, New Zealand, Australia, so it’s certainly not dead. There are a number of factors tying together have damaged the market: the finishing of the Saudi scholarships; the downturn of the currency in Brazil, Venezuela, Russia; economic problems, sanctions etc, … but there is a market. And new markets are opening up… South America opened up, and then Eastern Europe – there’s Vietnam and there’s the big one, China.

[In 2016] We opened a flagship school at $10m investment, we bought half a floor in a 20 storey in downtown New York. We’ve decided we are sharing the space now with a software training school, and I was just talking to them last night about a co-operation about programmes. I know there is space for that, but I think learning English will remain our core business

Pie News: So you talked about diversification, and lots of other people are trying to diversify through pathways. Is your sixth form college [in London]  a kind of pathway?

David Immanuel: The sixth form college is really about pathways, but doing it in the way of A Levels. We may well start foundation programmes from that college next year but if we do it, it will be one that’s recognised by the whole group of universities, rather than running around trying to get one university to recognise it.

Click here for the  full interview on the Pie News Website.

 

Christmas & Origami at LSI London Hampstead

Thursday, December 15th, 2016

The Christmas tree at LSI London Hampstead has a unique new look this year. For Christmas 2016 the tree has been decked out with beautiful origami decorations all hand made by LSI Hampstead students.  Many students took part in the origami workshop including students from Switzerland, Turkey, Germany, Italy, Colombia and of course Japan. The workshop was led by Japanese student Hideko Azuma who is currently on her second stay with LSI.

Hideko’s first visit, 5 years before, was totally different as her 6 months stay was during the spring and summer months. She enjoyed the first experience so much.

‘I felt it changed me as a person. Before , life had all been about work, but coming here made me realise how much more there is to experience. It was a wonderful time in my life, I made so many friends who I am still in contact with. I”ve travelled from Turkey, through Italy, Switzerland, France and Spain visiting my LSI friends. I remember one of my first impressions of London was how green it was compared to Japanese cities. This time it isn’t so green, ‘ she joked, ‘but of course, it winter and time for Christmas!”

HidekoBlog

Autumn Term Update on LSI Independent Sixth Form College

Monday, December 5th, 2016

Since the launch of the LSI Independent Sixth Form College in October, we’ve had a lot of interest and already have 8 students enrolled on our A levels courses. A levels are the standard qualifications required for entry into most UK universities. With more enrolments in January, it’s been a great start and passed all previous expectations.

Our students are both local and international students and the college has been able to accommodate all our students requirements in terms of subjects they wish to study and exam boards, alongside our published subjects list. Our students are enjoying their lessons in a wide range of subjects, from Modern Foreign Languages such as French, German and Spanish, to Economics, Psychology, Sociology, Business, Mathematics, Religious Studies and Latin. Our newly-built Science lab stands ready to welcome Science students in the near future.

It was also very pleasing to get our first offer from UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service), a very good one from the University of Nottingham, and we hope to have more UCAS news in due course.

SixthFormCollegeLabandFront

LSI expansion in the UK – LSI merger with LTC

Friday, September 30th, 2016

LSI is growing from strength to strength in the UK following LSI’s recent acquisition of  the LTC language school chain. LTC has schools in Brighton and London which have now been acquired as part of  LSI Group.

In Brighton the two schools are only a short ten minute walk from each other. Like the current LSI Brighton building, the LTC school is housed in four elegant interconnecting townhouses and with an extra 18 classrooms at our disposal, LSI will be able to accommodate over 200 additional students in the two buildings. The new facilities include a large student lounge that can seat 50 students and a large patio garden with space for over 100 students. There is also a student kitchen and a computer lab. LSI plans to extend the Junior summer camp in Brighton to make full use of the newly acquired building and the nearby St Christopher’s preparatory school.

In London, LSI are planning to run an additional junior summer camp programme from LTC’s London Ealing campus.  LSI London Ealing junior programme will take place at Ealing Green College located just 10 minutes walk from Ealing Station (west of Central London). The College has a warm, friendly atmosphere and students enjoy a canteen overlooking Walpole Park, and free internet access, among other amenities. Ealing is a hot spot for London families seeking  a safe environment for their children whilst being close enough to central London to enjoy all the fun things London has to offer.

 

Japanese Student Revisits LSI London Hampstead after 23 years

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

Yuko Tabata’s first visit to LSI London Hampstead was in 1992 when she was a young woman in her twenties. It was an exciting and memorable time in her life, so much so that 23 years on she decided to make a return visit and bring her young niece Nana with her.

“I have such great memories of LSI and I am still in touch with many of my friends I made back then. Some things don’t change. The teachers then and now were all really nice, the atmosphere in the school is friendly. I especially feel it’s a safe environment. My niece is only 16 years old but I knew that she’d be happy and feel secure here. During my current visit, I’ve taken my niece to see all the main tourists spots and I feel that London has changed a lot in 23 years. Hampstead though still remains a charming village in the centre of London. It is also incredibly nice to see that the LSI standards are the same after all this time.”

Yuko Tabata and her niece Nana

Yuko Tabata and her niece Nana

A Move for Marketing

Tuesday, May 5th, 2015

After some stunning  refurbishments in our London schools, LSI Marketing has moved into their spacious, new office at London Hampstead. For the first time all the marketing team based in the Uk, including the web and publishing departments and direct sales will be working under one roof enhancing the coordination of our sales and marketing services. The office  includes a conference area, where our team can host  meetings with agents in a comfortable, relaxing space. If you’re passing LSI London Hampstead, why not drop in and meet our team !

The New Management Team at LSI London Hampstead

Monday, 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

Monday, 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 their 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.

Tai Chi Class at LSI London Hampstead led by World Champion Ye Yongxiang

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

When Ye Yongxiang “Lillianna”  first arrived at LSI London Hampstead over a month ago she stood out as being a very special and talented lady. At the age of only 27 she is the current world champion in Tai Chi (Yang Style) winning this prestigious title in the ‘International Kung Fu Championship’ held in Hong Kong in March this year. Following in the footsteps of both her grandmother and mother (who herself was world champion 20 years ago), Tai Chi has always been a fundamental part of her life. Brought up in Shanghai in a highly educated family imbued with traditional Chinese values, she has been studying Tai Chi from the age of three initially from her mother but then from one of the top masters in Tai Chi.

Lillianna receiving her Gold Medal with her mother

Lillianna receiving her gold medal with her mother

Lillianna uses descriptions such as ‘moving yoga’ and ‘eastern ballet’ to try and explain the grace and poise of Tai Chi to complete novices. Despite being  a martial art and thus a contact sport, the emphasis in Tai Chi is in inner strength and controlled movement rather than physical force and has strong meditative and religious undertones.

“Tai Chi encourages a person to be more reflective, spiritual even and I feel it helps to give a deeper understanding of life. It’s so beneficial too in many ways – it helps to improve your coordination, sense of balance and relieves stress. The only downside  for me is the gruelling training schedule which leaves very little time for socialising with friends and for relaxation.”

Lillianna in training

Lillianna in training

In addition to training, Lillianna teaches Tai Chi to students in Shanghai, some of whom are International students and business people. “My plan is to be able to teach at a higher level, maybe even internationally, and to do that I need to improve my English. I’m planning to take the IELTs exam and so decided to enrol on a course at LSI London Hampstead. Being here in some ways has been a bit of a holiday as I haven’t been able to do all my usual training and it’s been great fun socialising with my fellow students”.

Lillianna kindly agreed to give a demonstration lesson to her fellow students and teachers. After the initial warm up, Lilliana performed some classic Tai Chi movements before her enraptured audience and ended with teaching some basic Tai Chi movements. If you want to catch some clips of the class , check out our Tai Chi Class video.

June2014HampsteadTaiChiClass

TV, Radio and Host Families – Three focus areas for Learning English Outside the Classroom

Monday, May 19th, 2014

When it comes to giving advice about language learning, no one comes more qualified than Patricia Vonscheidt, our Junior Programme Director at LSI London Hampstead. Patricia has hosted workshops and delivered talks to national TEFL conferences.  Here are a  few of her words of wisdom…

Patricia Vonscheidt, Junior Programme Director

Patricia Vonscheidt, Junior Programme Director

When learning a language abroad, we should try to take advantage of everything that comes our way to enhance our experience and improve our listening and speaking skills, and more so if we can get our hands (or ears) on authentic materials, such as TV programmes, radio shows and even everyday conversations with host families!

How can you use authentic materials to improve our everyday conversation? And how can we practise them?

TV: soap operas like Doctors, EastEnders, Coronation Street, to name but a few, can provide ‘colourful’ colloquial language which can be put to practice immediately with classmates or friends. Here are some tips:

  • Watch programmes live at home with subtitles: if you hear new words or phrases, you can quickly write them down, and try repeating them (you can check the meaning later!)
  • Watch them on iplayer services: this is a great option as you can stop and go back as many times as you want, to repeat, and practice the new phrases or structures

Radio: news programmes, interviews, adverts and songs can offer excellent ways to develop our skills further:

  • Listen to your chosen programme and be ready to write as many words as you can, don’t worry about spelling, or meaning. More often than not, these words or expressions will be spoken again and you’ll get a chance to check them.
  • As with TV, most radios are available online and therefore it is possible to listen, pause, and play again. This gives you the chance to repeat and write down what you hear.

Host families: when having a meal or sharing some time with them, always ask them when they use new words you don’t know, have your notebook at hand and make sure you write an example of the new vocabulary. Your hosts will always be happy to explain and be of assistance in your language learning experience!

Try out our tips and see the difference it makes to your language skills in no time at all!

Patricia in action at an annual International IATEFL Conference

Patricia in action at an annual International IATEFL Conference