Celebrating Pink Shirt Day!

Today is National Pink Shirt day and we made sure to honour this day at EC Montreal!  We asked our staff and students to come dressed up in pink to show they are taking a stand against bullying and choosing kindness instead.  Every year the EC Montreal team makes sure to get our students involved in celebrating Pink Shirt Day! Many of our classes discuss the topic of bullying as part of the lesson and students are also asked to deliver a presentation on the different types of bullying and what we can do to create a bully-free zone in school. It is such a beautiful thing to see so many wonderful messages of love, inclusiveness and support in the presentations and class projects. The EC Montreal team served pink glazed donuts from Krispy Kreme.  The students were so excited to get this special treat in class right before their break time.  We took the time to talk about the significance of the pink shirt and the importance of being a buddy and not a bully. We look forward to celebrating International Women’s Day next week and look forward to surprising our students with something special to mark this important day of the year!  A day when we celebrate important women throughout history and to address the unfortunate fact that we still have a long way to go to attain equal rights for women. Join us at EC Montreal and be part of this wonderful EC community, learning from each other and forming special bonds.

Recipe of the Week!

This week, EC Montreal will be celebrating National Pink Shirt day. On this day we raise awareness for bullying in all its ugly forms. We ask all our students to wear pink to show their support to our bully free philosophy at EC. We ask our students to choose kindness over bullying and to always strive to be a buddy not a bully. National Pink Shirt Day is a big deal here in Canada. All the schools do something special to honor the day and to get their students involved. In previous years, our EC Montreal teachers have lead student presentations and projects where students had to deliver a “talk” on different kinds of bullying and what we could do to prevent it. We also had a special guest speaker come to address our student population. He was a police officer who is specialized in training kids, teens, and young adults on how to deal with bullying. He delivered a powerful presentation and gave very helpful tips that we can all use in our daily lives to ensure we take a stand to bullies. On National Pink Shirt Day, the EC Montreal team always made sure to decorate the student lounge in pink. We had pink balloons and streamers and a variety of pink treats and refreshments. Every table in the student lounge also had special slogans and banners regarding this anti-bullying campaign. Slogans that read things like “Kindness is one size fits all” or “Be a buddy not a bully”. We also put up a chalk board wall and ask our students to write down their comments on what they can do, personally, to create a bully-free zone at the school. This year’s Pink Shirt Day will be a little different because of our social distancing measures and social … Read more

Throwback Thursday!

This week’s Throwback Thursday are images of EC Montreal’s movie day activities.  EC Montreal teachers in both our English and French programmes would choose a movie to be viewed as a group.  The movie would be followed by round table discussions.  The teacher would prepare worksheets in advance to get the conversations started.  It was always so great to see our students discussing, debating and expressing themselves on what they viewed.  The movies were always chosen with great care. The EC Montreal team would prepare refreshments for the teachers and students to enjoy.  We had popcorn, of course, and other fun concession stand snacks.  In February, in keeping with our Love theme, we served pink popcorn while viewing romantic comedies. These type of activities were ideal in getting students to interact with one another, practice their language skills through listening, note taking and discussions. This week’s memory aligns perfectly with the Quebec government’s recent announcement that movie theatres would be reopening on February 26.  If you have missed going to the cinema as much as we have, this is really happy news!  The movie theatres will have many safety measures in place including mask wearing and social distancing.  They will be limiting the number of people per viewing and unfortunately, the concession stands will be closed as they don’t want people to remove their masks while in the theatre. It has been so long since we have been to the movies, so even with these restrictions in place, it will be a pleasure to see a movie on a giant screen once again.  Montreal has many movie theatres around town; in the city center and in all the different neighborhoods. The government has also announced that indoor skating arenas as well as indoor swimming pools will be reopening on February … Read more

Jennifer Smitten From Canada: “I would definitely recommend this program”

Jennifer Smitten is a lovely woman from Aurora, Ontario taking our virtual French lessons. She has been studying French with us since September 2020. Here is what Jennifer wanted to share about her EC Virtual experience: I enrolled in this program to learn French from home and believed that its virtual classes would be more intensive than other online options. Each week I notice improvement, especially in my oral communication (which is what I struggle with the most). I liked that each class gives homework that helps students independently reflect on and practice the material they just learned. It is also great how every class incorporates multiple activities, which focus on different aspects of the language. This helped me recognize what my strengths and weaknesses were. Throughout each class, my instructor would only communicate through the language I was learning. While this can seem pretty daunting for newer learners, it proved to be a great way for me to challenge my own understanding of the language. My instructor was very kind and patient. I would definitely recommend this program. Join Jennifer in our EC Virtual French lessons offered Monday to Friday in levels beginner to advanced!    

How You Will Learn French at EC Montreal!

How you will Learn French at EC Montreal: Learning through speaking is called the communicative method and with EC, you will always follow a communicative method syllabus working on all your French language skills.  At EC Montreal, you will participate in classroom discussions, work in small groups, in pairs or individually.  You will practice your French pronunciation, intonation and accent.  Your French lessons at our Montreal school will be topic based focusing on various issues from current affairs to everyday issues.  Your professional and friendly teachers will expand on lesson topics helping you to increase our vocabulary, work on your grammar, improve your sentence construction and allow you to express yourself in the correct way.  EC Montreal offers levels from absolute beginner to advanced in French. Our advice to our students is to speak French as much as possible.  The more you practice and the more exposure you have to French, the faster your ability and confidence will improve.  We encourage our students to use French as much as possible outside the class.  We want you to be surrounded by French, and this is how: Montreal is a bilingual city where both French and English are spoken.  French is the first official language.  You will find it easy to practice your French in Montreal. We encourage you to choose French EC Montreal Homestay family.  You will have the opportunity to practice your French skills with your hosts.  The  most ideal time is supper time when you can talk about what you learned during the day and learn more about your homestay hosts and how it is to live and work in Canada.  You can also watch French television or movies together to really get the language exposure you need to learn and progress quickly! Our teachers also give regular homework … Read more

Recipe of the Week!

We just celebrated Valentine’s Day and as always, we have so much leftover chocolate that we received as gifts. At EC Montreal, we distributed chocolate gift bags to all our students and teachers to show them how much we love them. One thing I like to do with leftover chocolate is bake. A simple and easy recipe is chocolate chip cookies. They make a delicious snack or dessert any day of the week. They are also easy to pack up and give away as gifts to friends and classmates. I like to chop up all my leftover valentine chocolates and use them as chips in the batter. I like to use different kinds of chocolate to make the cookies extra special. For my version of chocolate chip cookies, you will need the following ingredients: – 2, ¼ cups of flour – 1 teaspoon of baking soda – 1 cup of softened butter – 1 cup of brown sugar – 1 egg – 1 teaspoon of vanilla – 2 cups of chocolate chunks, I like to mix white, dark and milk chocolate Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place 2 sticks of butter in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds to soften the butter or if you have time, just leave the butter out at room temperature for about one hour. Add your sugar to the butter and mix until smooth. Add your egg and vanilla and mix well. Next add your flour and baking soda. Mix well until you can no longer see the white flour. Add your chocolate chunks and mix well. Use a teaspoon to scoop out your cookie dough and roll into 1-inch balls. Place the cookie batter on a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake for approximately 5 minutes. The trick is to … Read more

Valentine’s Day Fun!

Sunday, February 14 is Valentine’s Day and we wanted to make sure to celebrate with our students today!  We make little gift bags filled with different chocolate treats and tied them with a ribbon.  We went to all the different classrooms and distributed them to all the teachers and students.  Every class we visited were so excited!  They cheered and thanked us and wishes each other a Happy Valentine’s Day!  It really warmed our hearts to see this reaction. On February 12 we also celebrated the Lunar New Year.  All our Asian students came in wishing us a Happy New Year.  One student, Xuan, from Vietnam also brought us a special treat to celebrate!  The day was celebrated from start to end! Despite our current situation, wearing masks and being social distant, we are still finding ways to add life to the student experience.  We are celebrating holidays, birthdays, graduations, teacher of the month and other events.  There is still a very happy atmosphere at the school, so much so , that our students keep extending their studies at EC Montreal and we couldn’t be more grateful! We are doing more than just adapting to our “new normal” at EC Montreal.  We are still helping our students succeed in a global community and still giving our students a very personal and enriching experience in Montreal. Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at EC Montreal!  

Throwback Thursday!

This week’s Throwback Thursday is of EC Montreal’s legendary chocolate festival to celebrate Valentine’s Day!  Every year during the week of Valentine’s Day, EC Montreal holds a chocolate festival as our “Taste of Montreal” complimentary activity. Every table in the student lounge was filled with platters and trays of the sweetest chocolate treats.  We had cupcakes, brownies, cookies, cakes, chocolate covered sweets, drinks and so much more!  In addition, we would place our chocolate fountain in the center of the room and have skewers of fruit, marshmallows and pound cake for students to dip in the flowing chocolate.  The entire school smelled absolutely heavenly!  It was so beautiful seeing all our students enjoying the treats while interacting with one another and making friends.  These opportunities help students to practice their language skills while having a marvelous time at the school. In addition to the chocolate festival, EC Montreal would offer other Valentine events to our students.  We sold candygrams that were delivered by a singing cupid, we held a love chase activity where students had to find the hidden hearts around the school to win a sweet prize. All these events communicated one clear message to our students that we love and appreciate them so much! At EC Montreal we love what we do and we go the extra mile every single day for our students.  We want them to know that they are in very caring and supportive hands at EC! These EC memories really keep us going these days and remind us that the good times we had in the past are not forgotten but something to aspire to and look forward to in the near future.  We will be back to creating these memorable experiences for our students through our wonderful school events. Until then, we will … Read more

Make Your Saturday Mornings More Productive!

The Test d’Évaluation de Français pour l’accès au Québec (TEFAQ) is a general French test which measures the level of knowledge and competencies in French oral and written comprehension as well as expression. The TEFAQ is recognized by le Ministère de l’Immigration de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion (MIDI) of Quebec for official immigration purposes. The official TEFAQ Attestation shows the distribution of scores for each module taken along with detailed comments for the different competencies. EC Montreal’s preparation class will focus on the two components of the exam: Comprehension Orale and Expression Orale. The first block of lessons starts on Saturday, March 6 from 9 to 11 a.m. The curriculum will include role play scenarios, seeking information, asking questions, presenting, comparing, and using convincing language expressions. The Comprehension orale is the listening component and will be offered in the second block, starting March 26. This class will consist of real-life situations: conversations, extracts from radio programs, public announcements, and other listening examples. The course will be delivered by one of EC Montreal’s most senior French instructors, Djamel. He has been teaching at EC Montreal for over a decade and has had experience writing course content and as our assistant director of studies. He is well respected by his work colleagues and students and a valuable member of the EC Montreal team. The lessons will take place on our Virtual French platform using Microsoft Teams. You can learn from the comfort and safety of your own home. Join the lessons with your friends, work colleagues or family! This can be a fun and enriching experience you enjoy together. We encourage everyone who needs to improve their French language skills to take this class. Making your Saturday mornings a little more productive will pay off in the end. Now is the … Read more

Museums and Shopping Galore!

We are thrilled that some of the restrictions mandated by the Quebec government in January have been lifted. We still have a curfew to respect between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m., however, shopping malls have reopened as well as hairdressers, day spas, libraries and museums! We are so happy that our students can now experience all the wonderful museums this city has to offer! Some of our favourites include the Science Center, the Redpath Museum and the Fine Arts Museum. Montreal’s Museum of Fine Arts is located just a few blocks away from EC Montreal and the best part is the permanent collection is always free! You can start booking your tickets online as of February 9.  Visitors will be able to check out the following four exhibitions: – Riopelle: The Call of Northern Landscapes and Indigenous Cultures – GRAFIK! Five Centuries of German and Austrian Graphics – Manuel Mathieu: Survivance – Yehouda Chaki: Mi Makir; A Search for the Missing The museum is located at 1380 Sherbrooke Street West and is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Redpath Museum is located on the McGill campus and is also free, well sort of, all they ask is that you leave a donation in the amount you are most comfortable with. If you are into dinosaurs, you are going to love this museum. Another free museum is located in the Cours Mont-Royal shopping mall, is the Barbie Museum. It is really cool and showcases all the barbies throughout the years. They are beautifully displayed and offer a nice break from your shopping. We hope you will get out there and experience a little bit more of Montreal now that you can! Please remember to always avoid crowds, wear a mask and wash your hands regularly. … Read more