Newsletter August 2016

The Conlan School Course Guide

The Conlan School Course Guide demonstrates the broad range of study programmes we can offer you and your students. Through our ever growing network of contacts in the business and educational community, our aim is to provide experiences that will expand knowledge and increase confidence within the culture of Wales and the UK. We hope that during your time with us you and your students can progress personally and positively in every aspect of life!

Please, click here to download "The Conlan School Course Guide"!

Introduction to new Centre Manager in Abergele
Greetings everyone, I’m Sean Crawford, the latest addition to Conlan’s school in Abergele, North Wales. Specifically for me, this involves managing our host families, logistics and your welfare. As Centre Manager I bring a wealth of experience from teaching, examining and managing for Education First in Beijing China (where I spent 10 years!) and have benefitted from the cultural experience from doing a 3 month work placement in Spain where I not only improved my Spanish, but about learnt more about myself. Travel, culture and languages are dear to me and here at Conlan my job will involve making stays as productive, worthwhile and enjoyable as possible.

Welcome to Wales!

So let’s continue with Spain. Following university – where I majored in Geography – I received a grant (called the Leornardo Da Vinci grant) to live and work in Las Palmas De Gran Canaria for 3 months. I loved it so much I stayed for 3 more, and bought a surfboard – happy days! Before the interview in Sheffield I crammed in as much study as possible through dated audio-lingual books where I had to repeat what people were saying (example – ‘Una mesa....para quatro.....por favor’.....[I repeat].....then suave english voice follows pause....’A table for 4 please’) I never did get to use that phrase but had enough to impress the interview panel with. So I flew to Spain where I stayed with 3 other guys on similar placements but with better Spanish. Not to worry... before I left Spain my colleagues had arranged an ‘asadero’ (picnic) for me where they gave me a big cake, many hugs '(ambrazos), a shirt of my adopted football club Las Palmas and many memories. I made the most of my time there and was happy that I managed to build relations with the little Spanish I had. I was 21 and this experience has lived long in the memory and gave me more confidence to try living further afield...China.

Sean with some of his students.

So, how was China? (You may be asking). In short, incredible. Due to its language system and cultural norms, it’s not that easy to integrate into Chinese society as you can imagine. But with the right mind set (being open and embracing) you can get an awful lot out of it. I’m most proud of the fact that I reached HSK level 4 in Chinese (though its slipping away now) became Area Manager for a large language school and made a strong network of friends and colleagues that was truly cross-cultural – this included captaining a football team with Columbians, Chileans, Americans, Brits, West Africans, Germans and Chinese. Being able to foster relations with these guys was fantastic now that I look back.

My advice is to take this opportunity to stay and experience another culture. With the right attitude it could live long in the memory and in some cases, be life changing
Hope to see you in Wales.

Fan of the Match at Wales v England at this summers Euros in France.

Building and Construction Group July 2016
We recently welcomed a group of Italian students who had won funding from the Veneto region to do an 80-hour 2 week course on the subject of Building and Construction. The group was made up of 20 male students ages 17 – 19 who study this subject in their school in Veneto. Our experienced teachers put together a great scheme of work for the lessons that focused on topics of interest such as careers in construction, bridge structures, health and safety and construction materials. The language they studied in class helped to enhance and improve the afternoon activities that the group took part in. During the 2 weeks, they visited Electric Mountain to have a guided tour focused on the construction of the power station inside a mountain, they visited 2 construction sites, they had a guided tour of Manchester focusing on the regeneration of the city’s architecture plus a visit to Chester and Liverpool. Finally, they produced fantastic presentations in English about their visit to North Wales which were watched on the final day by all of Conlan School’s staff and the group leaders. The picture you can see is of the group and Jessica Rooney, Read Construction’s Site Manager showing the students a primary school project in Llandudno Junction. Thanks to their teachers for motivating the boys in class and to the group for the effort and enthusiasm that they put into the course. Feedback from those involved in the project was excellent and we hope to welcome the school’s students back in the future.

Liceo Caro- Llangollen
On Thursday 28th of July, Liceo Caro went for half day trip to Llangollen with guide James to see Horseshoe Falls, the place where the canal draws its water from the River Dee. It`s basically a man-made weir, shaped like a horse-shoe. And like so many of Telford`s creations, it only seems to enhance the landscape around it. Students also saw the Llangollen Dee Bridge - the basic structure of this bridge has survived the force of the Dee in flood since the 16th century. The bridge was widened to provide more space for road vehicles in 1873 and 1968. The large cutwaters are a defining feature of the bridge and provide extensions of the pavement from which you can view the arches. The 16th-century bridge replaced an earlier structure, said to have been built by John Trevor shortly around the time he become Bishop of St Asaph in 1346. That too was a replacement for an earlier bridge at this site was possibly ordered by King Henry I (1068-1135). In the 1860s the bridge was lengthened when an extra span was added at the north end, to carry the road over the new railway. A stone tower with a castellated parapet was built at this end of the bridge at the same time. At the end of the trip students went to the centre of the Llangollen which is a small town and community of some 3000 people in Denbighshire, north-east Wales, situated on the River Dee and on the edge of the Berwyn mountains. Llangollen is seeped in myths and legends. In many ways it is best known for hosting the Llangollen international Musical Eisteddfod every July which brings in some 120,000 visitors and turns the town into a vibrant international stage. As with so many ancient Welsh towns, it takes its name from its founding Saint; Collen, a seventh century saint. Llangollen, was established in the 7th Century when the monk St. Collen was instructed to find a valley by riding a horse for one day and then stop and mark out a “parish” a place to build his hermitage or cell in the custom of the times, with tiny church, hospice and outhouses all enclosed within a wall. It was a beautiful day and students had a lot of fun surrounded by nature and the city full of souvenir and ice-cream shops.

Idiom of the month
You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.
This phrase is used to tell someone that if they help you, you will help them