20th August 2014
The Celtic Junior Summer Programme has now finished and the students have all returned to their own countries, taking gifts home for their families as well as memories and lasting friendships for themselves!
This year, our juniors from Japan, Saudi Arabia, Russia and within Europe have been participating in both exciting lessons and activities to help boost their confidence in spoken English whilst, of course, having fun! Inside of the classroom they have done a lot of learning while outside they have been sightseeing in London and Bath, visited landmarks in Cardiff like the Millennium Centre, the National Museum and Cardiff Castle, and they’ve even tried salsa dancing and African drumming!
The Junior Summer Programme offers both quality residential accommodation and courses in the Wales Millennium Centre, one of the world’s premier art venues in Cardiff Bay. The juniors spent between two and four weeks living in Cardiff Bay and taking in the Welsh culture. As well as receiving English lessons, they were also provided with activities that promote the practise of English in practical environments!
The programme is based in the heart of Cardiff Bay, in a location which is a minute’s walk from places like the Mermaid Quay shopping district and the Senedd, the National Assembly for Wales. It is also where the Cardiff Ubran Beach Festival is based, perfect for people who like BBQ food, fairground rides and live music. It is a great, safe area for our students to explore and learn from.
The lessons themselves are allocated according to the level of the students’ English ability, and they are also based on what activities are planned for the rest of the day. Students are educated about Welsh places that they visit such as the Big Pit and St. Fagans in their lessons before they leave.
Students are taught by experienced and qualified teachers from the Celtic English Academy, who promote practicing English through writing, reading and speaking in equal measure. Students are also awarded with a Celtic English Academy certificate of completion of their course!
FInally, students are supervised by Junior Summer Activity Leaders whilst they are out of lessons. These leaders stay on-site with the juniors throughout the entirety of the programme, ensuring that juniors eat breakfast, lunch and dinner and get the most out of their activities. They are on-hand to deal with any problems that may come up, as well as to provide support and assistance with English practice.
The students, the activity leaders and the teachers have all thoroughly enjoyed their time spent in the programme. White water rafting proved to be a big hit with the students as they raced the waves, as well as another swimming session held in Swansea’s LC2. Venturing into the Big Pit mines also proved very popular with everyone involved.
In London, the students visited Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and the Trafalgar Square to name but three locations, and they also treated themselves to a healthy dose of shopping afterwards!
Everyone has learnt a lot about language, too, including the activity leaders themselves. They were impressed with the students’ language improvement and how people from different nationalities were able to understand each other using English. In turn, they also learned some key phrases, like ‘good night’ in Russian and ‘hurry!’ in Arabic!
For the children, this is as much about being on holiday as it is about learning, and it is important to us to strike a balance between education and fun. This was all topped off with a leaving celebration where students were given their certificates before returning home to their respective countries!
The teachers and activity leaders would like to thank all of the students for visiting Wales and attending the programme. It has been a very memorable experience for everyone in the team and we all have plenty of fantastic photos and videos to remember the time by. Some of the students from this year had siblings who had attended last year’s Junior Summer Programme, and we hope that all of our students will tell their friends and family about this fantastic opportunity to be had in Cardiff! We want to see new faces for next year!
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