Friday, 29 November 2013

Saint Andrew's Day

St. Andrew's Day is the feast of Saint Andrew. It is celebrated on the 30th of November.

St. Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland, part of the United Kingdom.

The celebration of St Andrew as a national festival is thought to originate from the reign of Malcolm III (1034 - 1093). But it is only in more recent times that the 30 November has been given national holiday status.

The Scottish flag, the Saltire, represents Saint Andrew's crucifiction, he was crucified in an X-shape.

Scots celebrate this festival with traditional dancing and music, and with eating traditional food such as haggis.   They will also, no doubt, drink some of Scotland's famous whiskey.

Our students have been learning a little about Scotland in their lessons this week.



Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Benefits of taking Cambridge Exams for Students in Italy

Article taken from the Cambridge English website:
Students studying on English-medium degree courses at two Italian universities are now entitled to a full or partial exemption from English tests set by their university – if they have passed a Cambridge English exam.

A range of Cambridge English tests, developed by Cambridge English Language Assessment, are now officially accepted on courses in the Economics faculty and Human Sciences department at Università degli Studi di Palermo and the law department of Seconda Università di Napoli "Università Federico II".

“Italy is a really popular choice for international students and we’re seeing more English medium courses become available which is really encouraging,” commented Nicola Johnson from Cambridge English Language Assessment. “Universities around the world are turning to external assessments to measure language ability to help them ensure students have the English language skills they need for success in university life. The Cambridge English exams takes this one step further by assessing the real-life communication skills students need in the classroom and socially.”

The full details of the exemptions are:

University of Palermo dept of Humanistic Sciences: recognition for Cambridge English: Preliminary (undergraduate), Cambridge English: First (undergraduate), Cambridge English: Advanced (postgraduate) allowing students to have a partial exemption from the English exam; Università di Palermo - Facoltà di Economia: recognised Cambridge English: Key and Cambridge English: Preliminary. Students with these certificates are exempt from taking the English exam, from taking the English course and are awarded six credits.

Seconda Università di Napoli - Faculty of Law: recognised Cambridge English: Preliminary. Students with Cambridge English: Preliminary have full exemption from taking the General English exam.
Students should contact the universities directly to find out more information about the new exemptions.

Monday, 25 November 2013

Horrible Histories

We often say that students should try to improve their listening skills by watching English-speaking films and television programmes.

Listening is a receptive skill, it is important to train yourself to listen for key information, as well as listening for general meaning.  The best way to improve your listening abilities is to expose yourself to as much spoken English as possible.  The more you hear, the easier it will be to understand!

There are lots of ways to find English-speaking films and TV shows, you can download from the internet and most modern TVs will allow you to turn off dubbing on some channels simply by using your remote control.  In addition to this, you can watch the news online, for example, on the BBC website.  You can also find lots of things to watch on YouTube.

A suggestion of an English TV show you might enjoy watching is Horrible Histories.  It is intended for children but many adults would enjoy it too.  This award winning television programme gives historical facts in amusing and entertaining ways.

Why not try watching one of the many Horrible Histories programmes on YouTube?



Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Key and Preliminary Courses at Quintino Cataudella

[caption id="attachment_662" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Student is presented with her certificate Student is presented with her certificate[/caption]


Students from Istituto d'Istruzione Superiore, Quintino Cataudella in Scicli have been presented with their Key (A2) and Preliminary (B1) Cambridge English certificates.


In the last scholastic year, the school offered fifty hour Cambridge courses to its students with one of our Cambridge CELTA qualified, native speaking English language teachers in their excellent language facilities, which include a computer media lab.  The students sat their exams in the summer.


Pictured with the successful students are our school's Director, Catherine Ciancio, Anne Byrne from the Cambridge exam centre in Siracusa, the school's Head Teacher, Vincenzo Giannone and the class tutor, Josie Mauro.


Congratulations to all students on their Cambridge qualification!


[caption id="attachment_663" align="alignnone" width="300"]Student is presented with his certificate Student is presented with his certificate[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_664" align="alignnone" width="300"]Students with their Cambridge certificates Students with their Cambridge certificates[/caption]


Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Young Learners Courses at Istituto Scicli Centrale

[caption id="attachment_654" align="aligncenter" width="400"]Student receives her certificate Student receives her certificate[/caption]


This week students from Istituto Scicli Centrale in Scicli received their certificates for the Cambridge Young Learners programme and exams they completed in the last scholastic year.


The school offered the Cambridge Starters and Movers programmes to their students.  The children completed a fifty hour course with one of our qualified, native-speaking teachers before sitting an exam which assessed Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening.


The school was very happy with our collaboration and would like to continue the initive of offering mother-tongue teachers of Cambridge English in this scholastic year.


Pictured with students are our school's Director, Catherine Ciancio, the class tutor, Daniela Carrabba and the school's new Head Teacher, Maria Gabriella La Marca.  The programme was started in association with the former Head Teacher, Vincenzo Giannone.


Well done to all Istituto Scicli Centrale's excellent young learners!

[caption id="attachment_655" align="alignnone" width="300"]Student recieves her certificate Student receives her certificate[/caption]


[caption id="attachment_656" align="alignnone" width="300"]Student receives his certificate Student receives his certificate[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_657" align="alignnone" width="300"]Student presented with his certificate Student presented with his certificate[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_658" align="alignnone" width="300"]Students presented with Cambridge certificates Students presented with Cambridge certificates[/caption]