ESL

Language and Communication Supports for ESL Students

October 25, 2016 • Written by

Professional Communication Workshops for ESL Students – Fall 2016:

Join us to develop the oral communication skills and confidence you need for success, both at Red River College and in the workforce.

Notre Dame Campus:
Room: E108
Times: 11:00am – 12:00pm & 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Dates:
• Monday, October 31st – Presentation Skills: Part 1
• Monday, November 14th – Presentation Skills: Part 2
• Monday, November 28th – Interview Skills

Exchange District Campus:
Room: P313
Times: 11:00am – 12:00pm & 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Dates:
• Tuesday, November 1st – Presentation Skills: Part 1
• Tuesday, November 15th – Presentation Skills: Part 2
• Tuesday, November 29th – Interview Skills

For more information, contact Kaleigh Quinn: kquinn@rrc.ca or 204.631.3472. Learn more about these sessions and the schedule on the Academic Success Centre website (http://blogs.rrc.ca/asc/english-support/esl-workshops-2/ ). You don’t need to register to attend these sessions; we look forward to seeing you there!

Additional ESL Workshops:

Groups of four or more ESL students can also request program-specific ESL workshops. We will run a special workshop for your small group that focuses on the language challenges you are experiencing in your specific RRC program. To arrange for a specialized ESL workshop, please contact: Kaleigh Quinn at kquinn@rrc.ca.
For more information about any of these opportunities, please contact Kaleigh Quinn: kquinn@rrc.ca or 204.631.3472.

Did you know…

July 6, 2016 • Written by

Did you know that all ESL/EAL (English as a second/additional language) students studying within an academic program at RRC can access 1 hour/week of ESL tutoring for the duration of their academic program?

ESL tutors:

  • are trained ESL teachers who work one-on-one with students
  • use your program material and assignments in the tutoring session
  • help you understand your assignment instructions and work more quickly and efficiently
  • help you find your errors yourself, and to develop strategies to prevent future errors.

Watch this video about ESL Tutoring to learn more!

What can an ESL tutor help you with? Click here to find out!

How can you request an ESL tutor?

  1. Contact Kaleigh Quinn
    ESL Specialist, Academic Success Centre
    Phone: 204.631-3472 (M/W/F) or 204.631.3365 (T/Th)
    Email: kquinn@rrc.ca
  1. Complete the online Tutor Request Form
  2. Drop into the Academic Success Centre:
    Notre Dame Campus: Room D106E
    Exchange District Campus: Room P210K

If you have any questions, please contact Kaleigh at kquinn@rrc.ca!

Supports for ESL Students: ESL Conversation Group

July 6, 2016 • Written by

ESL
The Academic Success Centre is continuing to offer ESL Conversation Groups for ESL students at both the Exchange District Campus and Notre Dame Campus this summer.  Join this group to develop and practice the communication skills you need for success, both at Red River College and in the workforce!

Spring & Summer Conversation Group Sessions:

Notre Dame Campus:

Room: D205
Times: 11:00am – 12:00pm & 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Dates:

  • Friday, July 15 – Making Appropriate Requests
  • Friday, July 29 – Language for the Job Interview – Skills & Practice 1
  • Friday, August 12 – Language for the Job Interview – Skills & Practice 2

Exchange District Campus:

Room: P304
Times: 12:00pm – 1:00pm & 4:00 – 5:00pm
Dates:

  • Tuesday, July 12 – Making Appropriate Requests
  • Tuesday, July 26  – Language for the Job Interview – Skills & Practice 1
  • Tuesday, August 9  – Language for the Job Interview – Skills & Practice 2

We hope to see you there! For more information, contact Kaleigh Quinn: kquinn@rrc.ca or 204.631.3472.

ESL Conversation Groups

June 9, 2016 • Written by

ESL
The Academic Success Centre is continuing to offer ESL Conversation Groups for ESL students at both the Exchange District Campus and Notre Dame Campus this summer.  Join this group to develop and practice the communication skills you need for success, both at Red River College and in the workforce!

Spring & Summer Conversation Group Sessions:

Notre Dame Campus:

Room: D205
Times: 11:00am – 12:00pm & 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Dates:

  • Friday, June 17
  • Friday, July 15, 29
  • Friday, August 12

Exchange District Campus:

Room: P304
Times: 12:00pm – 1:00pm & 4:00 – 5:00pm
Dates:

  • Tuesday, June 14, 28
  • Tuesday, July 12, 26
  • Tuesday, August 9

We hope to see you there! For more information, contact Kaleigh Quinn: kquinn@rrc.ca or 204.631.3472.

Did you know…

May 11, 2016 • Written by

Did you know that all ESL/EAL (English as a second/additional language) students studying within an academic program at RRC can access 1 hour/week of ESL tutoring for the duration of their academic program?

ESL tutors:

  • are trained ESL teachers who work one-on-one with students
  • use your program material and assignments in the tutoring session
  • help you understand your assignment instructions and work more quickly and efficiently
  • help you find your errors yourself, and to develop strategies to prevent future errors.

What can an ESL tutor help you with? Click here to find out!

How can you request an ESL tutor?

  1. Contact Kaleigh Quinn
    ESL Specialist, Academic Success Centre
    Phone: 204.631-3472 (M/W/F) or 204.631.3365 (T/Th)
    Email: kquinn@rrc.ca
  1. Complete the online Tutor Request Form 
  2. Drop into the Academic Success Centre:
    Notre Dame Campus: Room D106E
    Exchange District Campus: Room P210K

If you have any questions, please contact Kaleigh at kquinn@rrc.ca!

Join the ESL Conversation Group!

May 11, 2016 • Written by

ESL

Join the ESL Conversation Group! 

The Academic Success Centre is offering ESL Conversation Groups for ESL/EAL students at both the Exchange District Campus and Notre Dame Campus over the spring and summer. Participate in these sessions, and develop and practice the communication skills you need for success in your college program and the workforce, to network with students in other academic programs, and to have fun! Sessions will be interactive, engaging and dynamic, and are available to all students at RRC with a CLB 7+!

Spring & Summer Conversation Group Sessions:

Notre Dame Campus:

  • Room: D205
  • Times: 11:00am – 12:00pm & 12:00pm – 1:00pm
  • Dates:
    Friday, May 20
    Friday, June 3, 17
    Friday, July 15, 29
    Friday, August 12

Exchange District Campus:

  • Room: P304
  • Times: 12:00pm – 1:00pm & 4:00 – 5:00pm
  • Dates:
    Tuesday, May 17, May 31
    Tuesday, June 14, 28
    Tuesday, July 12, 26
    Tuesday, August 9

For more information, contact Kaleigh Quinn: kquinn@rrc.ca or 204.631.3472.

We hope to see you there!

 

Free Pronunciation Workshops

September 16, 2015 • Written by

Do you have trouble pronouncing some of the common words and phrases from your RRC program? 

Are you shy to speak up in class because you are worried people might not understand you? 

Do you want to get more rhythm in your spoken English?

If you answered yes, consider joining a free Pronunciation Workshop.

These workshops give you:

  • Practice pronouncing and correctly using common vocabulary from the programs at RRC
  • A chance to record your voice and receive individual feedback on your pronunciation strengths and weaknesses
  • Individualized exercises designed to help you with your pronunciation weaknesses

To register, contact Michelle Amaya-Torres mamayatorres@rrc.ca or 204-631-3365. There is a limit of 12 students per series, so register today!

Notre Dame Campus

Topic Date and time Location
Pronunciation: Word level stress Wednesday, September 23 12:00 to 12:50 NDC Room E-110
Pronunciation: Sentence level stress Wednesday, September 30 12:00 to 12:50 NDC Room E-110
Pronunciation: Emphasis and intonation Wednesday, October 7 12:00 to 12:50 NDC Room E-110

Exchange District Campus

Topic Date and time Location
Pronunciation: Word level stress Monday, September 21 11:00 to 11:50 EDC Room P-313
Pronunciation: Sentence level stress Monday, September 28 11:00 to 11:50 EDC Room P-313
Pronunciation: Emphasis and intonation Monday, October 5 11:00 to 11:50 EDC Room P-313

Groups of five or more can also request program-specific pronunciation workshops. We will run a special workshop for your small group that focuses on the vocabulary and pronunciation of your specific RRC program. To arrange for a specialized pronunciation workshop, please contact: Michelle Amaya-Torres at mamayatorres@rrc.ca.

Other Academic Success Centre workshops

ESL students are also welcome to attend any of the other Academic Success Centre workshops, for example in accounting, math, macroeconomics or statistics. For more information on these non-ESL workshops, please follow the link to http://blogs.rrc.ca/asc/workshops/

Learning from Luis – Your Recipe for Success

September 10, 2014 • Written by

LuisImagine having a successful career, complete with all the skills, knowledge, confidence and reputation that come with it. Then imagine being told that you must start all over again because you cannot communicate at even the most basic level. This happens regularly to newcomers to Canada, who are faced with many such obstacles.

Now let me introduce you to a student who has found his recipe for success. Luis was an international student at RRC, in the Legal Assistant program. I met him recently at RRC’s Language Training Centre, located in the VIA Rail station downtown. Luis was visiting his former class at the LTC to share his experience of moving from language classes to an academic program. He confidently stood among the crowd of fervent English language learners and gave them this advice: “When you begin your program, you must do these three things – One, work hard. Two, work hard. Three, practice your English by making Canadian friends.” Brilliant! Here was a student who seemed confident that he was on the right pathway to success, who had concocted a recipe that was working very well for him. Not only that, but his success was so encouraging and exciting that he longed to share it with others.

Intrigued by Luis’ passion, I found out his story.

Luis left Mexico and moved to Winnipeg with his family. Even though he had skills and experience as a lawyer, he knew very little English. Knowing he had a long way to go, he started language classes at RRC’s Language Training Centre. Within one year of studies, Luis’ English communication skills had advanced to the level that was required for entrance into the Legal Assistant program. Luis was the only international student in this particular program, which he believes to be one of the most recognized in Manitoba, with a “high level of difficulty”. His goals are to continue studies in the Business Administration program. He has no worries about his ability to succeed and knows he’s on the path to continuing his career in Manitoba, despite his obstacles. He credits the LTC for giving students “all the tools that are necessary to be a successful student in the Canadian educational system, and . . . helping you to know and learn about a new culture and be part of it.”

Many of us can learn from the advice Luis gave that day, no matter what our obstacles are. Have you found your recipe for success? If so, have you gathered the ingredients? Then get busy cooking and, when you’re ready, celebrate and share your success!

Submitted by Carolyn Schmidt, Program Facilitator, RRC’s Language Training Centre

⇒ Check out the Language Training Centre’s microsite (rrc.ca/ltc) to find out more about RRC’s communication programs for international students and permanent residents.

How (Not) to Greet Your Boss

June 10, 2014 • Written by

greet

“Hi, boss,” said Roberto (not his real name), a recent immigrant, on his first day of work in Canada.

“Don’t call me ‘boss’,” was the reply. “My name is Jim.”

Do you think Roberto has created a good first impression at work? Maybe not. A seemingly simple social exchange has led to a misunderstanding and possibly hurt feelings. But as someone who was raised in South-Asia, it was natural for Roberto to want to show deference to his superior in their first interaction. In fact, studies show that in the Philippines, where Roberto is from, hierarchy is more important than almost anywhere else in the world! Yet as a Canadian, it was natural for Jim to want to be addressed as an equal. Hierarchy is not valued as highly here.

For individuals like Roberto, understanding Canadian cultural values is an important part of integrating into the Canadian workplace. And there are many other cultural orientations, in addition to hierarchy vs. equality, which are studied by academics in the field of inter-cultural communication: time vs. relationship, individualism vs. collectivism and directness vs. indirectness to name a few.

Complicating matters further is the reality that the Canadian workplace is multicultural, so recent immigrants to this country need to understand the cultural values not only of their coworkers who were born and raised in Canada, but also of those born elsewhere, like themselves.

Providing guidance in navigating these rough waters was one of the major goals of a course in Canadian Communication recently offered by the Language Training Centre to a group of internationally-educated engineers in a pilot Bridge to Civil Technologies program. A motley crew of students of various nationalities (Chinese, Colombian, El Salvadoran, Filipino, Iranian, South Korean and Vietnamese) developed their awareness of Canadian cultural orientations through the completion of a variety of communication tasks. Needless to say, with such a diverse crew, it was not always smooth sailing. Nevertheless, with practice, they gained the knowledge and skills necessary for their work-term placement and successful integration into the Canadian multi-cultural workplace.

Roberto now understands why in the Canadian workplace we typically address each other by our first names and avoid deferential titles like “boss” and “sir”.

Submitted by Stuart Schwartz, EAL Instructor, RRC’s Language Training Centre

Check out the LTC microsite! rrc.ca/ltc

“Talking to Immigrants is So Hard!”

June 5, 2014 • Written by

conversation

I got the flu this winter, like everyone else in Winnipeg, and I needed a letter from my doctor, like everyone else at RRC. As I sat in the waiting room, trying not to suck in any other viruses, a newcomer was trying to communicate with the nurse at the desk. She asked him about private insurance. He said, “Manitoba Health card?” She said no, and repeated what she had said before. My inner EAL (English as an Additional Language) instructor welled up, but I held myself back from going up to help the poor guy. It’s not my job to save every immigrant struggling on the street, and besides I wasn’t feeling well. But I was surprised that a health care professional, in an office where many immigrants were accessing service, was not able to modify her speech to make it easier for the patients she works with. Often a conversation like this can be managed successfully if the English speaker uses a few tools. Here are some ideas:

  • Face the person you are talking to.
  • Speak slowly and clearly; don’t mumble. There’s no need to yell, hearing is not the issue.
  • Repeat what you said a couple of times.
  • If this is not working, rephrase what you’ve said. Use simple words, and be aware of slang and idioms you might be using.
  • Check for understanding. If your listener looks confused, try some body language or show them what you’re talking about if you can.

Hopefully these tips will help you feel more comfortable in such a situation. Remember that someone who is confused is probably frustrated and embarrassed, so a smile and relaxed attitude from you will help you both relax. Good luck!

Submitted by Janice Ching, Intensive EAL Instructor, Language Training Centre

Check out our microsite! rrc.ca/ltc

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