Graduation! 16th June

Congratulations to our six General English students graduating from Lexis Byron Bay this week!

 

Graduation

Sakiko from Japan graduates from Josie’s Upper Intermediate class after an incredible year of studying at Lexis. She heads to New Zealand to travel, before heading to Perth for a short stint at our Lexis school there. Since her first day here in June 2016 she has gained an incredible amount of confidence in her speaking and listening. She has been a very dedicated student and her progress has been impressive. Her teachers really enjoyed teaching her due to her hard work and positive attitude. Have a wonderful trip to New Zealand and good luck with your future studies in Perth – and with your Gold Coast Marathon!

Nil from Spain (Catalonia) graduates from Josie’s Upper Intermediate class, having completed his FCE course with Paul. Nil has been with us since September and has been a fantastic member of the school – getting really involved in all the activities and taking every opportunity Byron has to offer. He leaves us with a great level of English: a really good grasp of grammar and an impressive vocabulary. He will be sorely missed by us all here!

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Madoka from Japan graduates from Michelle’s Elementary class. She has been a very motivated student and as a result he has achieved fantastic exam results throughout the course. She has participated very well in speaking activities and her speaking skills have improved a lot. She is off to travel around Australia with Kensaku to find all the best surf spots. It has been a delight to get to know you Madoka – All the best!

Kensaku from Japan graduates from Michelle’s Elementary class. Michelle expressed what a pleasure it had been to teach Kensaku, who would tackle each daunting task with enthusiasm. He has really improved his speaking, writing and listening abilities. Keep practicing English with your lovely wife Madoka as you seek out surf spots up the Coast!

Wahei from Japan graduates from Michelle’s Elementary class, after 4 weeks of study. Despite only a short period of study, Wahei has improved greatly in all areas of English, especially his speaking ability. He has participated well in class activities. He is off to travel and surf around Australia. Have a wonderful time Wahei!

 

 

Learn English in Byron Bay. Lexis English students study General English, IELTS, FCE, CAE and English plus Surfing and Yoga in a friendly and professional school right in the heart of Byron Bay and only 15 minutes from the beach.

 

 

Happy Student – Tito!

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Tito is from Switzerland – the small village of Malvaglia. He arrived in Byron Bay 6 months ago and enrolled at Lexis, starting in the Upper Intermediate class. After several months studying General English, he went travelling round Australia in his van, with friends he had met at Lexis. He traveled down the East Coast, into the outback and finally to Sydney, before returning to Byron. He is now knuckling down to study for his Cambridge Advanced Qualification. Tito has become part of the furniture here at Lexis Byron Bay; you will often find him waxing his surfboard, skulking around reception looking for Tim Tams or involved in a heated table tennis match. Tito is a fantastic student and a pleasure to have at school, he is loved by fellow students and teachers alike.

I decided to interview Tito to find out a bit more about his experience here.

Why did you choose Byron Bay?

I chose Byron because I didn’t want to live in a big town with all the hustle and bustle – I wanted to live in a small town – here with the waves I can find peace, enjoying the sunny weather and the fresh sea air. I think I would to define Byron Bay as an open minded and multi-cultural place.

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What were your weaknesses in English before you came to Australia?

I was a little bit rusty in everything concerning grammar – for this reason it was essential to go on a formal English course. Being here for 6 months, using the language has become natural – I think it is a process which takes time, but you can really see your improvements by being fully immersed in a situation where the use of this language is required.

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Tell me about your teachers and your classes.

I have been enrolled in upper intermediate and then advanced, where I had the opportunity to meet the amazing teachers Claudia and Josie – Claudia is an extremely knowledgeable teacher and I liked her way of explaining a lot of grammar rules which before were difficult for me to understand. Whereas Josie is the most motivating teacher that I have ever had and it’s a great pleasure to learn such a challenging syllabus with a teacher who makes it seem so easy and enjoyable.

What is it like living in our onsite Accommodation?

It’s an extremely comfortable and familiar place to live – there is a very sociable environment, it is very easy to make friends and as soon as you arrive you become part of the onsite family. It is always possible to go out of your room and hang around in the common area, seeing all of your friends. Since my arrival I’ve met a lot of gregarious people with whom I have organised many dinners, for example the Easter Sunday dinner where almost all the residents (50 people) cooked delicious dishes to share in a friendly and pleasant environment. Many students from around the world made different dishes from their home countries. I made a pizza from scratch, inspired by my Swiss Italian heritage – so tasty.

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What is your favourite activity that we run here?

The most attractive activity is undoubtedly the table tennis tournament, where only the student with the best skills can win the title and of course the beer. It is always full of cheering crowds, the competition gets very heated. Romain is better than me, so he usually wins, but I win second place, which is also an impressive accolade. Don’t worry if you think you are not going to win, we will still share the beer with you!

What are your favourite things to do in Byron?

Most days I enjoy spending my time at the beach, surfing, sunbathing and playing beach games such as Frisbee and Volleyball. It is wonderful to live and study right on the beach. I will never forget the time when a dolphin passed right under my surfboard, what a breathtaking moment! I often see dolphins when surfing, during the Summer it is as common as seeing bushturkeys. You also can’t leave Byron without experiencing the nightlife of this delightful town; Sticky Wicket, Lala land, The Rails and of course Cheeky Monkey’s are all lovely pubs/clubs where you can meet local people and share drinks and great discussions with your friends. A warning though: Do not abuse alcohol; otherwise you will pay the consequences the next day at school!

 

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Happy Student – Tito! | Lexis | Byron Bay Blog
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Learn English in Byron Bay. Lexis English students study General English, IELTS, FCE, CAE and English plus Surfing in a friendly and professional school right in the heart of Byron Bay and only 15 minutes from the beach.

New Starters – Monday 30th June

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Today we welcome three new students; Lea from France, Noriko from Japan and Micha (Mike) from Switzerland.

Parisian Lea is here on our Teen Activity Programme. This means that she will be studying English for 3 hours in the morning and surfing all afternoon. She has surfed a little before, in the south of France but doesn’t know it she can remember how to do it! She actually has a twisted ankle right now, but she’s determined not to let that ruin her fun.

Noriko is a nurse in Japan. She has wanted to travel to Australia and improve her English for years. Today, after 10 years, she finally turns her dreams into a reality. She chose Byron Bay because she had seen pictures in a magazine and thought that it looked gorgeous and so different from her hometown, Tokyo.

Mike is currently studying a Masters in Law and is also a snowboarding instructor and a volunteer at a centre for asylum seekers. He’s in Byron Bay for the surf and, after leaving here, will head to Bali for some more waves.

Next year, multi-talented Mike is going to Ukraine to continue his studies and to improve his Russian.

Welcome guys. We hope you all have a wonderful time here in Byron Bay.

Graduation 27 June 2014

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We said a sad farewell to eight lovely students this week: Mariana, Hiroko, Andjelina, Haruka, Kainoa, Hugo, Martin and Jean.

Haruko and Hiroko are both from Japan, and have both been at Lexis English for 12 weeks. When Haruka arrived she was really shy and tested at Elementary level. Now she is leaving Lexis as a strong Pre-Intermediate level student and has a job waitressing at Oh Sushi, a local restaurant.

Hiroko, on the other hand was a strong student on arrival and has simply got better and better. She used the idiom “time flies” in her graduation speech, which was very impressive. “Cheeky” Hiroko was very sad to be leaving, and her teacher and classmates were close to tears too.

Brazilian Mariana, unfortunately wasn’t at Graduation today, but studied at Lexis for six months, culminating in taking the FCE exam. Fingers crossed for your results Mariana.

Andjelina, from Switzerland, studied in Julia’s class for four weeks, was a lot of fun, and is now heading back to Switzerland before going on to Croatia.

Jean and Kainoa from Reunion are off to check out the surf at Bondi Beach. Julia thanked Kainoa for his storytelling skills and Kainoa thanked Phil, our bike man! I think this was a first at graduation but should happen more often.

Finally, Martin and Hugo, also from Reunion Island, said that they had learned a lot about surfing and loved everything about Byron Bay, including their teacher. Did you train them to say that Kathleen?

Good luck all of you and don’t forget to join Lexis Byron Bay on Facebook, if you haven’t already, so that you can keep in touch with your new friends from all over the world.

Final Thoughts from our Reunion Island Teens

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Kainoa, Hugo, Martin and Jean are all from the gorgeous Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean. Today is their last day at Lexis Byron Bay. They have been studying here for the past three weeks in order to improve their English and (I think more importantly for them) their surfing.

I caught up with them at break time today to get their final thoughts on their trip.

Why did you choose Byron Bay for your study tour?

Martin: For the surf. The waves at The Pass are world-famous and we really wanted to have the experience of surfing there.

What was the best thing about studying English in Byron Bay?

Jean: The surf (again!!!). It was as good as we’d hoped. The food was great too, especially Bay Kebabs.

Has your English improved much since you arrived?

Hugo: My speaking has improved so much. When I first came, it was really difficult. Now it’s simple to speak with anyone. I know I still make mistakes but my confidence has improved so I just do it.

What helped your English the most?

Kainoa: Lessons of course, and the English Only Policy, but also our homestay family. They made us speak English together all the time and also always chatted to us and explained things in English.

And finally, what would you say to anyone who was thinking about studying English at Lexis Byron Bay?

Kainoa/Martin: It’s a great idea!

Thanks guys. It was great having you here. We hope you’ll come back again someday. 

Meet our CAE teacher, Ian!

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Why did you choose teaching as your career?

Because I love languages, love travelling and learning about other cultures and I love working with people.

 

Which class are you teaching at the moment?

I teach the Cambridge Advanced course

 

How long have you been teaching at Lexis Byron Bay? What did you do before you worked here?

It’s my first week here at Lexis Byron Bay, but I’ve been teaching English for nearly 20 years.  Most of my teaching was in Sydney, and I’ve also taught in Moscow, Bangkok, Korea, Mongolia and Paris!

 

Do you speak another language? What was your biggest challenge when learning it?

I speak French and German, pretty well, and a little bit of Spanish, Italian and Indonesian.    I studied French for 10 years, but when I got to Paris I couldn’t understand a word, so listening is very difficult for me!

 

What do you like the most about your job?

Creativity, interaction with people, making a difference in people’s lives and learning about students’ countries.

 

In your opinion, what is Byron Bay’s best kept secret?

The Pocket, where I live.  There are lots of these little valleys around Byron Bay in the Hinterland, which are beautiful,  green and peaceful.

 

If you were not a teacher, what job would you have now?

Well, I took a break from teaching for a few years and did something completely different, helping older people live in their homes instead of going into nursing homes (community care).

 

Please make Ian very welcome at Lexis!