I would like to take a minute to introduce myself, tell you a little about our English language program, and offer some fun suggestions for studying English during the summer.
My name is Katya Kilian, and I am the Director of the ESOL program, TOEFL Coordinator, and dorm parent.
The ESOL department has three levels of classes. Students’ English level is tested every fall, and students are placed in the level that will be most challenging while also being supportive of their language development. Our classes focus on language acquisition, U.S. academic culture, and content such as history, literature, writing, and science. The classes are student-centered and participatory.
Before classes begin, students attend orientation. During orientation, students meet other students and faculty. Students will participate in information sessions where faculty explain everything students need to know about living and studying at Hebron. Additionally, everyone participates in games and activities designed to be low pressure and lots of fun. Activities do not require a lot of speaking, and after a few activities, you will know a lot of people.
Several students have asked me about how to improve their English over the summer. I have a few suggestions:
Reading for fun improves your vocabulary, fluency, and comprehension skills. Find a book that interests you and where you know at least 90% of the words. Contact me for suggestions based on your interests and level.
Listen to podcasts to learn about culture and conversation. Here are a few to try:
- 6 Minute English by the BBC - For advanced students to listen to new vocabulary and conversation topics.
- Voice of America Learning English - For intermediate to advanced students to listen to new vocabulary and news topics.
- Learn English by the British Council - For foundations to intermediate students to listen to basic English conversations.
Write in a journal daily. Set a time limit such as ten minutes. Then, write, without stopping, for ten minutes. Do not worry about mistakes. The purpose is to develop fluency or automaticity with writing and vocabulary. These are such unusual times, and there is so much to write about!
The website Rachel’s English has many free and brief videos that clearly teach pronunciation.
Additionally, Hebron has a conversation exchange Zoom group which can be found at this Zoom link. Join us beginning on Thursday, June 11th, at 8:00 AM ET.
I look forward to meeting each of you soon. Please send me an email anytime if you have any questions. Best wishes for an enriching and safe summer!