English in Action in Albania

What is EIA? Let’s look at their homepage: http://www.englishinaction.com/about.html They say:
The Problem
You know what it’s like. You want to do the best for your students.
But there are examination pressures, and a syllabus to get through – you want to make sure that you have covered the language and topics in enough depth (..) You know in your heart of hearts that what the learners really need is a chance to immerse themselves in an English speaking environment. You know that confidence and fluency only comes when you start to live and breathe a language.
So what are your options?
It’s getting almost impossible to organise a student exchange with a school in England. A study tour to the UK is a possibility – you take a small group of students every year, but it is expensive and difficult to organise (..)
Wouldn’t it be great if there was something easier, less stressful and less expensive?
Something that all of your students could join in with?

The Solution
Back in the early 1990s, the Headmaster and the English department of one school in Austria asked themselves just these questions. Their solution? To organise an English project week in their own school. It would be a whole week of English with the teaching provided by a group of native-speaking teachers from the UK.
The result? Teachers and parents alike were amazed at how this one week of English transformed their students’ confidence and fluency. It had turned their students from learners into users of the language. The overwhelming success of this project started what has become English in Action.
Over 20 years later, English in Action continues to deliver top quality English language project weeks. With a team of over 20 full-time staff and up to 100 teachers in schools in any one week, English in Action has developed a reputation for quality and professionalism that is second to none. This is why it is the trusted, 1st choice partner for hundreds of schools across Europe and Asia.

So, that’s what I planned to do: organize a one- week taster course for selected classes. Thanks to generous funding by Fritz Neugebauer from ÖGB we could put this project into practice between 15 and 19 September 2014. The committed and charismatic Dale Ogilvy, who was in charge of the course, was highly responsible for making this experience such a success.

Let’s have a look at some photos and what the students have to say about this special week:

Renate Melcher

Hi Emily,
How are you? It’s been a while since I sent an email to you. I was really busy.
I can’t believe I’m saying this but I loved this Monday. The reason why is that we had 6 lessons with a new English teacher called Dale. He is awesome. He is 32 years old and he is 197 cm tall. He is a travelling teacher and he has already visited 50 countries. Isn’t that amazing?
We had a lot of fun together. We played some games, too. One of them was called “Somebody said that”. We made two groups. One group was called “Kuzey” and the other was called “Guney”. Each of us had to say a different word for e.g. a color or an animal and the person who said a word twice loses, and the other group gets a point. I was in the “Kuzey” group and we lost. But that’s ok. We still had a lot of fun.
We also made some interviews and we wrote down some interview tips. We formed small groups and discussed a lot of different topics such as “What do we think about social media? Is it a good way or a bad one to make new friends? etc
Another thing we did was conduct a debate on abortion. It was a long debate and everybody in our class said their opinion.
But the most important part is yet to come: we took part in a Hollywood role play.
We had to organize a small party where every star of Hollywood was invited. Suddenly at nightfall, Brad was killed. We had to find out who had done that and why. I was Max Factory, a make-up artist. I was a very gossipy character and I knew everybody at that party. I was drunk all the time and I never stopped talking. In the end Brad was found out to have been killed by his ex- girlfriend, Lis, because she was jealous of him and his new girlfriend.
In the afternoon we invited Dale to go out with us. We drank juice and we talked about his life. He is so polite and gentle too. He told us a lot of interesting things.
That was an entertaining Monday.
How about you? Tell me what you have been doing all this time.
I can’t wait to read your email.

Hello Ms Melcher,
I am sending this e-mail to update you on our lessons with Mr. Dale Ogilvy. After you left the classroom we started talking and got to know each other better. He was very friendly throughout our conversation. I knew that this was the first time this project- English in Action-was happening in Albania, and I felt very lucky to be part of it. However, I was curious how my class and the teacher were going to handle 6 continuous hours of the same subject.
The thing I liked the most was that this wasn’t a regular English lesson- we were divided in teams and we got really competitive. I really enjoyed every part of it, especially the debate, the “Hollywood party” and a version of a taboo game. With no books and no grammar rules, just with 22 students and 6 lessons, Dale was able to teach us while having a great time- that is not easy to accomplish. I really want to thank you for this wonderful opportunity and a very special experience.

English in Action

For the first time in Albania, our English teacher organized a full immersion taster course at our school. Our class took part in it for one day, too. We had 6 lessons of English in a row, but this time outside the syllabus, like in real life. On that day we had the opportunity of getting to know Mr. Dale Ogilvy, our teacher-trainer better.
We talked in small groups about different topics like the greatest person that ever lived on Earth, the pros and cons of Facebook and so on. After that we organized a discussion about the topic “smoking and drinking”. The teacher also had us take part in a role play which ended up being really successful and in the end we also played some word games between two different teams.
This day was a new experience for us and in my opinion it was a great way to practice our English.

Injacio Gjeluci