Winter at BBELS

A view of the school and the bikes students ride from their houses each morning.

Winter is a great time to come to Byron Bay if you are interested in studying English. The town is a little quieter than usual so it is easier to meet local people and make friends. If you are looking for a job there is less competition among employees for work in the local restaurants, cafes and bars. If you are interested in surfing, some of the best waves can be found in winter. The water is still warm enough to wear a light spring wetsuit, and you might be lucky enough to share the water with the whales that swim through the ocean during winter.

Here at Byron Bay English Language School our class sizes become smaller – many of our students enjoy this as it means more face-to-face time with their teachers. If you are European or South American this is a particularly good time to study because the number of students from your country will be less than usual, this will motivate you to make friends with students of other nationalities.

Many people think that Byron Bay is a summer destination, however the weather is still warm with a blue sunny sky, the beaches are quiet and relaxing … it’s a great place to study 🙂

If you would like to know about our courses please contact us at info@bbels.com.au or visit our website.

 

Meet the Students: Lucas and Joao from Brazil

Two friends from Brazil: Lucas and Joao

This week we are very happy to introduce you to two students who are loved by all the BBELS staff and students. Lucas and Joao are friends who studied in the merchant navy in Brazil. They then decided to come to Australia to study English so that they can improve their job prospects internationally. They have been studying with us for 16 weeks and are now finishing an IELTS preparation course. We love their positive attitude, good humour, dependability and sense of respect towards people.

Please read below for an interview with Lucas and Joao:

Why did you decide to study in Byron Bay?

We knew that the weather is similar to Brazil, that we could enjoy the day surfing in beautiful natural surroundings. We also knew that Byron Bay is a destination for Europeans rather than Brazilians so it provides a good opportunity to study English. Living here rather than in a big city we can appreciate the smaller things in life, for example sitting on the beach and watching a beautiful sunset. We don’t need all the things we had back in Brazil.

What do you like most about BBELS?

The methodology and patience of the teachers, the mix of cultures, even the building itself. We can go on trips with our classes where we can see more of the Australian culture and landscape and learn English in an authentic environment.

How do you expect the English you have been learning at BBELS to help you when you return to Brazil?

The best companies in the merchant navy are multicultural. You need to be able to communicate with other crew members in English as well as read manuals in English. We hope to prove that our English is good enough to be hired by one of these companies.

What do you like most about the Australian culture?

Australians are generally honest, they follow the rules, it creates a safe environment to live. They are also kind and friendly. People say “hi” to you in shops or in the streets, we are looked after well by the local people.

Both of you have found jobs here in Byron Bay. Can you tell us a little about them?

The work that we do is very different to back home but we enjoy it. Lukas works as a part-time support worker for an elderly woman at her house. Joao works at a local restaurant doing dish-washing. Both jobs help support us financially plus improve our English. We should also mention that we have a second job as cleaners at BBELS.

We genuinely love having Lucas and Joao at the school and we will miss them when they graduate.

If you would like to know more about our courses please contact us at info@bbels.com.au or visit our website.

 

Meet the students: Laisa from Brazil

Laisa enjoying her 20th birthday with school friends

Six months ago Laisa arrived at BBELS. She is a confident person who loves to talk and laugh. This confidence helped her move from an Elementary class to an Upper-intermediate class in just 6 months. We are very proud of her achievement and so we thought this interview would help inspire others who are thinking of coming to Byron Bay to study English.

1) Could you tell us a little bit about Byron Bay and your experience studying at BBELS?

I studied at BBELS for 6 months, during the entire period of the course I felt very well looked after and welcomed by both the teachers, the administration and all the school staff. BBELS provided me with the chance to be in contact with diverse cultures. The school always encouraged the integration of everyone through activities outside the classroom, such as going out for a coffee or a walk along the beach and weekly activities of sports, surfing and yoga classes. These things impelled us to always get to know more and take advantage of everything that Byron Bay has to offer, that is, being a beautiful, small and cozy town, with interesting weekly markets. It also has a strong sense of environmental responsibility.

Practising some moves …

2) How has your English language level progressed?

When I came to Byron Bay I was in the Elementary level but after 6 months I finished  in Upper-intermediate. I achieved great progress in English through great encouragement, lots of practice, having day-long speaking classes. and a lot of attention and patience from all the teachers.

Graduation day. From Elementary to Upper-intermediate. Well done!

3) What would you say to people who are thinking of doing travelling to Byron Bay and studying at BBELS?

I would say that BBELS is a school that can provide you with incredible experiences beyond the quality of teaching. Byron Bay is a special place with lush nature, a good opportunity to learn English. You can enjoy the magic of Byron Bay. Despite it being a small town there are many tourists so this provides great employment opportunities in the hospitality area.

Thank you Laisa for being such a positive force around the school 🙂

If you would like to know more about our courses please contact us at info@bbels.com.au or visit our website.

Excursion to Broken Head

Summer may have finished but there is still a lot of sunshine to be enjoyed here in the Byron Bay region. This week our pre-intermediate class spent a beautiful morning at the Broken Head nature reserve where they learned new vocabulary to describe the plants and animals found at the beach.

Looking north to Byron Bay

The class walked through the littoral forest (beach side forest) and then walked into the sunshine where they had a great view to the neighbouring beaches. It’s always such a great experience to take the students outside the classroom and show them the different areas around the region. It is both refreshing and encourages a new type of learning.

If you would like to know more about our courses please contact us at info@bbels.com.au or visit our website.

 

Fantastic Results. Congratulations to our CAE students!

Congratulations to our CAE candidates for doing so well in their exams. We were so pleased to see such a high pass rate.

We would especially like to offer a Huge CONGRATULATIONS to Thomas (from the Netherlands)  and Meva (Switzerland) for scoring an A in the March CAE exam. They achieved CPE level scores for Use of English and speaking and a perfect listening score of 210. Well done! We should also say a big thank you to the Cambridge teachers, Kat and Ash, whose dedication, knowledge, and good humour helps our students achieve good results.

When Thomas contacted his teacher with the happy news, he said:

” Thank you! Without you it would not have been possible”

At BBELS we love meeting students like these who are talented, hardworking and apply themselves to their exam preparation while still managing to have a great time in Byron. 🙂

If you think this sounds like something you’d like to do, take a look at our next Cambridge exam preparation dates by following this link. We look forward to meeting you soon.

 

 

CPE results. Congratulations to Femke.

Femke with her teacher Kat

A big congratulations to Femke, our lovely student from the Netherlands, who completed the CPE Boost course of study at BBELS. She has just received the happy news of her success in passing the exam.

The Cambridge proficiency exam is a demanding exam and she was nervous about getting through it but Femke worked hard with her teacher to prepare. Well done Femke and good luck with your further studies.

We would also like to  congratulate Kat, our CPE teacher, for all the hard work and dedication that she directed towards Femke during the course. Kat always receives such positive feedback from her students for her caring approach to her classes.

If you would like to know more about our Cambridge Proficiency preparation classes or about any of our other courses please contact us at info@bbels.com.au or visit our website.

The BBELS Job Club

Max, our friendly Job Club manager

The BBELS Job Club helps our students find work in and around the Byron Bay area. Since 2014 we have been establishing connections with local businesses that are happy to employ our motivated and hard-working students. We have helped hundreds of students on Working Holiday visas and Student Visas find work.

What kind of jobs can we help you find?

Byron Bay’s main industry is tourism so there are a lot of jobs in the hospitality services. Students who join our Job Club often find work in the local Byron Bay hotels, restaurants and cafes. We also help students find work on farms around Byron Bay or in other locations.

Who can join the Job Club?

If you are an Intermediate level (or higher) student with a Working Holiday visa or Student Visa you can join the Job Club.

What will Job Club do for you?

The Job Club manager will help you write your resume so that it is in the Australian format. The manager contacts businesses around town and takes students to their job interviews. After we find you a job the manager checks you are satisfied with your job (hours, pay).

Working in Australia is a great way to buy a car and travel. It is also a fun way to study English and learn more about the culture of the country. If you would like to know more about our Job Club service please contact us at info@bbels.com.au