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Insegnamento | Apprendimento

Our teaching approach | It is very much the result of our long professional experience. It is based on principles derived from the most advanced research on language learning, as well as on tried and tested methods and approaches. These are activated through a variety of learning tasks and resources/materials, so as to help students improve and make their language competence stable, especially in areas which we know to be problematic. We pay particular attention to the students’ spoken English.
We believe the following factors to be crucial:
1. at Middlesmoor we have the benefit of the concentrated twenty-day period;
2. attention and memory play crucial roles in language development;
3. both individual and group motivation are fundamental for everyone’s learning; the integration of language school with a family-like environment at Middlesmoor helps greatly in creating and maintaining individual and group motivation;
4. We use both modern and older, well tried language teaching and learning approaches as well as resources, which our experience has shown us to be highly effective. We adopt the following activities & tasks: speaking language games (indoor & outdoor), creative writing from patterns or themes given, the use of extracts from novels, poetry, and newspapers, theatre/drama work, music, project work. Through these and many other activities, and with our support, our students are helped to notice, understand and remember the close connections which exist in English between meaning, prosody and grammatical structures.

Students’ behaviour | Because of the close connection between the students’ participation and commitment, and their successful long-term learning, it is important that students treat responsibly the opportunity given to them by their parents, and take full advantage of the learning possibilities which we make as motivating as possible.
We therefore do not tolerate in Middlesmoor any disruptive or offensive behaviour / language on the part of any students at any time, or any kind of behaviour / language that may affect negatively the well-being and therefore English language progress of any other student. (see Pre-enrollment phone call)

Lessons in Middlesmoor | Lessons take place in the mornings for three hours from 9.30 to 1.00 with a half hour break. Sometimes in the evening we make space for a half hour of games and group study to consolidate the material of the morning lessons, in order to foster long-term memory.

Age and level of students | The summer courses (20-21 days) are suitable for children from 11 to 17; we often accept older students who have been to Middlesmoor before. The courses are suitable for all levels of language competence, total beginners included. The students are divided into into 3 groups according to their language knowledge & level.

Learning activities & Tasks | We use a variety of activities and tasks: playful repetition, role play, acting short “grammar plays”, simplified articles from newspapers, guided writing, some traditional exercises but with a strong focus on spoken practice, memory games, texts and singing of folk songs and pop songs.
The learning tasks are planned so as to foster above all the students’ spoken / interactive English, and so as to maximise student participation through clear, interesting and motivating resources / topics.
Besides their use in lessons, all students have to prepare a play / dialogue scene to perform in the end of course show; more advanced students take part in drama activities, performing excerpts from one or more Shakespeare plays.

Learning materials | We give the students all the lesson material, and in fact an important aspect of what we do in Middlesmoor is to give study material that students will find useful in the following school year. We suggest students bring stationary items: pens, pencils etc as we make great use of our photocopier students should bring an A4 file with the transparent plastic sleeves into which to put our pages so that everything is kept in good order, and it will be easy for them to use as reference later at school.

Course DVD | We film many of the activities, excursions (such as camping or swimming in the river and streams and moments of the lessons so that the families can enjoy at a remove the experiences of the children and better understand the kind of teaching and atmosphere of Middlesmoor – besides seeing the extraordinary beauty of the surroundings. All the students’ theatre performances are filmed for the course DVD which all students receive after their Middlesmoor course.

Teaching material | We provide all the teaching material, which over the years we have put together in order to render teaching in these three weeks as clear as possible. Most of this is focused on a combination of speaking and understanding of the basic forms of the language.
Students should bring a ring binder and blank plastic envelopes (size A4) so as to keep the various materials ordered and easy to refer to during the subsequent school year. They should also bring their own pens, pencils, rubbers, glue and highlighters, a size A4 exercise book, and whatever else they might need.