St David’s College has developed an English immersion year for pupils who come to us where English is their second language. We have created structured provision to support the pupils in learning English to a level where they can go on to access our curriculum in their chosen subjects. We also give pupils the chance to improve their confidence in written and spoken English to allow them to thrive later in life. We can tailor the course to support pupils with conversation and/or technical language.
Immersion through opportunity
St David’s is uniquely positioned to offer pupils a wide variety of opportunities that will allow them to develop their confidence in using the English language. Pupils enrolled in our immersion year will have access to our sector leading Outdoor Academy which will allow them to use their English in a series of practical outdoor activities. This will also hopefully allow pupils to develop their confidence and use language to facilitate teamwork and leadership skills. In addition, St David’s would actively encourage pupils to participate to school and house events which would provide them with a plethora of opportunities to develop their language skills.
The pupils’ 1:1 teacher will focus on building pupils’ knowledge of keywords for their chosen subjects at GCSE or A Level/BTEC. Pupils will benefit from following a structured reading and spelling programme to support their literacy skills. 1:1 teacher will focus on teaching basic comprehension skills using easier passages and then letting the pupils write simple sentence answers once the comprehension passage has been read, understood, and discussed. As the year progresses, these simple sentences and answers will be built upon.
EAL language tutoring
As part of the immersion program, pupils will be given a minimum of 6 general English lessons per week to develop their core skills: Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking, Grammar and Vocabulary. This will form part of a timetable that features other core subjects.
Main-stream subjects studied
Pupils will study core subjects and 1 or 2 blocks of the options with space provided for EAL support.
Pupils will be given the opportunity to practice what they have learned in their English lessons in an English-based teaching environment. These additional core subjects will reflect the courses that they plan to go on and study at the next stage of their education.
Teachers will concentrate on Key Words and vocabulary and will not be too concerned about the end-of-year product. Reports will focus on language rather than subject progress. Specific subjects can concentrate on key terms and in the case of a particularly gifted pupil, they can look at accelerated learning programmes.
Sixth Form Immersion Year
For pupils interested in joining St David’s College in Sixth Form. Our immersion year offers an opportunity to increase English language skills to the point where pupils can access our Level 3 courses. English GCSE or IELTS qualifications are seen as pre-requisite to study in U.K. universities. The aim of our Sixth Form immersion year so to allow pupils use English to reach their potential in the A-level and BTEX subjects and provide a solid foundation to ensure they can meet the required IELTS, or GCSE qualification needed for higher education.
Evening & Weekend Programme
The evenings and weekends provide an ideal opportunity for pupils to develop their language skills in a series of structured and supervised extra-curricular sessions. St David’s offers a range of evening activities including a wide range of sports, and outdoor education activities, as well as more creative and cerebral options such as ceramic art, tabletop gaming, and chess.
On the weekends, pupils will take part in our Outdoor Academy expeditions and activities. These activities will not only promote conversational English skills but also increase the confidence and resilience of pupils. In addition, pupils will have the opportunity to take part in Day excursions on our varied ‘Trip Programme’. This includes visits to local cultural sites, shopping trips to the near-by cities of Chester and Liverpool as well as extensive opportunities to explore the local region of North Wales and Snowdonia. We hope these opportunities will develop their social communication and interaction skills and provide an understanding of the social structure and culture of the UK etc.