Proyecto de Inglés Colegio Seminario San Rafael

Students present a play in their English class

Because there are always fun ways to learn English, last week the 6th grade students performed a mini theater play called «The Lost Tickets», using the vocabulary and grammar of the unit «A trip to the theatre».

The purpose of the experience was not only to expand the children’s lexical repertoire, but also to strengthen their personality, group work, organizational skills and solidarity with their peers, since not everyone has the same talents and abilities.

The children were very happy with the result, as they had fun and played while learning. We share with you some images of the performance.

Exchange program AFS visits our school

In order to get to know the exchange program and the benefits that studying abroad would bring to the young students, last week AFS, one of the biggest and most recognized organizations for studying abroad, visited both campuses of our school.
In this organization’s presentation, it was emphasized that studying abroad is a unique opportunity to learn new languages, be exposed to new cultures, and create ties with people from around the world. Furthermore, the AFS organization presented a program of host families, which will be about families giving temporary housing to exchange students, giving both sides the opportunity to live side by side and learn from the different lifestyles that carry their corresponding cultures.
If you are thinking about living an experience like this and are able to, do not fear! It will be an experience that you will never forget!

English for our little ones

In prekindergarten and kindergarten, the increase of pedagogical hours (from 5 to 10) that are focused on the teaching and learning process of the English language has been well received by our kids, who, being quite motivated, actively participate in each class.

Floppy’s Phonics is a rigorous program for alphabetization that involves children from their early years in order to help them learn the English language more easily. This software begins to be implemented in the prekindergarten level of school, where the children are expected to acquire phonological awareness to, later on, learn the sounds modeled by the teacher. This tool, therefore, will ease the process of acquiring the skill of recognizing the relationship between the letter and the sound, which will make the children more proficient in reading and spelling.

Finally, with the support of the platform OxfordOwl, which the school has already subscribed to, the students will be able to practice pronunciation at home, while in class their teachers will model the sounds in a didactic manner through games, songs, and storytelling. All of this will help the students develop linguistic skills in a natural and enjoyable manner.

School Signed an Agreement with Oxford University Press

Our school advances in its strengthening of the English language as a second language. Thus, it signed an agreement with the Oxford University Press (OUP), transforming us into an Oxford Quality, which entails a series of benefits for our institution, such as:

Free trainings for our English teachers supported by the University of Oxford, training in other areas for professionals of the establishment and special discounts for our parents and children of staff members at the Books and Bits bookstore.

On the other hand, the entity offers personalized guidance en the selection of textbooks that contributes thedevelopment of our students’ competences. Even more, this year that we have begun working by levels with our students of III° and IV° Grades, to best meet their skills and enhance their learning of the English Language.

The agreement involves the following tools that are directly related to the learning of our students:

  1. Oxford English Hub. Platform where all the digital tools incorporated in our programs, and extra sources for the teacher associated to classroom usage and training methodology, are stored.
  2. Oxford Teachers Club. Bank of downloadable resources for the teacher, students, and parents that serve as an extension to English language learning, that can be associated to the different programmes offered by OUP. In addition, resources on a variety of topics related with the teaching- learning process for students and teachers are included.
  3. Position and Focus Papers. Through Oxford University expert panel advice and perspectives, these documents put practice on the main problems that can be found during English language teaching, which are available to be downloaded for free through the OUP website.
  4. Professional Development: to schools that decide to work with our programmes, OUP delivers workshops tailored to the institution, addressing those needs and requirements that the school may have in relation with teaching and learning the language.

English Week

From today, 2nd November, the English Week is taking place in our school, where there will be various motivational activities that seek to highlight the importance of mastering the English language in order to develop in different cultural, recreational, sporting and other areas.

The preschool students in Valparaiso will demonstrate their routines and songs at the beginning of each day. In Viña del Mar students from preschool to year 4 will be preparing a parade about English speaking countries.

In addition, Year 5 and Year 6 pupils in Valparaiso will compete in spelling bee while in Viña del Mar pupils from Year 5 upwards will have interviews with artists and an English Town where they can interact in English whilst simulating a city. At the same time, in Valparaiso students from year 7 upwards will be decorating spaces with posters in English and translating the signs around them into English.

Our activities will close on the 8th and 11th November with a storyteller from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso who will bring reading comprehension to students from pre-school to year 4 in an interactive and motivating way.

We invite our students to actively participate and enjoy the activities organised by their classmates.

Motivating English language learning from pre-school

Through classroom routines we seek to motivate, improve the students’ listening and comprehension skills and thus provide them with opportunities to practice language skills in an integrated way.

Here are some images of activities with kindergarten students.

Role-play to improve reception and production of the English language

Ninth grade students from Viña del Mar had an entertaining experience in English class with their teacher Paulina Vega. On this occasion they played a role-play simulating a shopping trip to the mall with a set budget for the purchase of certain items.  In addition, they had to calculate the final price of their purchase according to the offers and discount percentages, reinforcing content from the subject of mathematics.

The activity aimed for the students to integrate the skills of reception (listening and reading) and production (writing and speaking) of the language, bringing the use of the language closer to everyday situations, content contemplated within the A2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), which is the international standard that defines linguistic competence in a language.

This type of activity is common, considering that the school is now a Cambridge Preparation Centre, international recognition which means that we prepare our students according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages to obtain at the end of their schooling an international certificate level B1 or B2 in English, recognised worldwide, which will open the doors to their professional and personal aspirations.

Today, October 15th 2022, our Year 12 students are taking their B1 level exam of the Common European Framework.

The exam will allow them to internationally certify their level of English in all language skills and is characterised by the user having the ability and knowledge necessary to clearly understand texts in the language, especially if they deal with common topics.

With this exam we will complete the certification process for the year 2022.

We are grateful for the commitment and dedication of our twelfth-year students who understood the positive impact that this process will bring to their professional lives.

At this moment, a group of 12th grade (fourth senior year) students A,B,C and D are taking the international exam corresponding to level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages at our school.

This exam identifies independent language users, that is, those who have the necessary fluency to communicate effortlessly with native speakers and can produce clear and detailed texts on various topics, as well as defend a point of view on general topics indicating the pros and cons of different options. This exam will allow them to internationally certify their level of English in all language skills and is being conducted by specialized staff from the Cambridge Examination Center of the Chilean-British Cultural Institute of Viña del Mar following the regulations established by Cambridge Assessment.

The exam will be sent to Cambridge and evaluated in England, so we will have the results 5 weeks after having taken the exam.

We wish them success and we are proud of the achievements that may arise from this opportunity that San Rafael Seminary has given them as a Cambridge Preparation Centre.

Eighth graders travel back in time and tell their friends about their lives

With the aim of integrating the skills of reception and production of language in everyday situations, the students of 8th grade in Viña del Mar, together with the teacher María José Cabrera, had the mission of imagining that 20 years have passed and wrote a letter to share what has happened to their lives in this time and comment on their current life.

Thanks to these activities the students can integrate and apply different ways of referring to the past and their life experiences. In addition, it was possible to see the vocational interest of each of them, their dreams, concerns, places they would like to visit, events they would like to attend and how they plan their lives.

All of the above allows the teacher to provide feedback in order to generate pedagogical activities in tune with their interests and the stage the young people are at.

Students invent a story and design book covers

Students from 3rd grade, Valparaiso were able to demonstrate not only their linguistic skills but also their artistic skills by creating a book cover of their choice.

This activity encouraged imagination and motivation for reading as they invented characters in the story and incorporated vocabulary already known to the new vocabulary learned.

The activity was very entertaining for the children, since through drawing and painting they were able to display their creativity, imagination and work on negotiation skills to reach consensus in a group work.

Our school has been nominated as a Cambridge Preparation Centre

In the framework of the agreement signed yesterday between Seminario San Rafael and the Chilean-British Institute of Culture, our school has been nominated as a Cambridge Preparation Centre, an international recognition which means that we prepare our students according to the standards established by the Common European Framework for Languages leading to a B1 or B2 level certification at the end of their school years.

With this, the school becomes part of the Cambridge English Community, which gives it access to multiple benefits in terms of teacher training, information, material, among others. The importance of this lies in the possibility that we will now be able to certify the English level of our students with a globally recognised exam that will open doors for their professional and personal aspirations.

The agreement was signed by the Headmistress of our school, Mrs. Claudia Bruno and the Director of the Cambridge Examination Centre and General Manager of the Chilean-British Institute of Culture, Mr. Mario Oliva.

Source: Daniella Guerra

               English Department Coordinator, SSR School

Outstanding participation of SSR students in Spelling Bee contest

On Thursday, August 4, our 7th and 8th grade students had an outstanding participation in the spelling contest organized by Saint Dominic School called «Spelling Bee», in which students participate by executing a quick spelling of words selected according to the level of the category in competition.

In the 7th grade category, students Julián Rojas, Andrés Leiva and Matteo Favre participated from Valparaiso. From Viña del Mar, the students who took part were Antonia Contreras, Diego Fernández and Vicente Miranda. In the 8th grade category, Martín Ávila, Martina Delaporte and Samantha Gallardo represented Valparaiso, while Guillermo Castro, Felipe Cowell and María José Brusco represented Viña del Mar.

In the eighth-grade category, Samantha Gallardo, Felipe Cowell and María José Brusco won first place.

The pedagogical importance of participating in this type of contest lies in the fact that the student is tested in front of his or her peers in the use of a foreign language, undergoing the pressure of recognizing the concept, knowing its meaning, knowing how to write it and spell it against time without making a mistake.

In addition, the contestant must deal with frustration tolerance, have confidence in his or her abilities, have team spirit, practice public speaking, be under pressure and be empathetic with his or her peers and the rest of the participants.

Source: Daniella Guerra

English Departament Coordinator

SSR School

«The Greatest Book-to-Movie Adaptions»

Dracula, Snow White, Harry Potter, Anne Frank and Sherlock Holmes were some of the characters recreated by the students of year 9 C and D this morning in an interdisciplinary activity between the departments of Language and English, called «The Greatest Book-to-Movie Adaptions.»  

The students from 5th to 4th grade toured stands where their classmates narrated in English the central theme of the story, presented the historical and cultural context of the creation, compared the text and the film production, and highlighted the most relevant quotes.  

The students had to be dressed as the most important characters and were supported by posters based on the pedagogical criteria set out in the rubric. The activity is an evaluation of both subjects. 

Source: Daniella Guerra

English Departament Coordinator

SSR School

TOPIC Outstanding participation of the school in Spelling Bee contest

Our 5th and 6th grade students had an outstanding participation in an English Spelling Bee organized by Saint Dominic’s School, which took place last Thursday, a contest in which the children participate by executing a quick spelling of words selected according to the level of the category in competition.

Matilda Reyes (5th grade B) won second place in the 5th grade category and Pablo Elgueta (6th grade B) won first place in the 6th grade category. 

The pedagogical importance of participating in this type of contest lies, first of all, in the fact that through the use of the language, students expand their vocabulary while focusing their attention on spelling and the correct pronunciation of the words studied.

Secondly, the student is tested in front of his or her peers in the handling of a foreign language, undergoing the pressure of recognizing the concept, knowing its meaning, knowing how to write it and spell it against time without making a mistake.

Finally, the contestant must deal with frustration tolerance, trust in his or her abilities, have a team spirit, practice public speaking, be under pressure and be empathetic with his or her peers and the rest of the participants.

In qualitative terms, from the preparation to the day of the contest, the students reinforce the values of empathy by not laughing at their classmates who make mistakes, respect, fair competition, solidarity and identity, as seen in what it meant for each child to represent his or her school in the contest.

Cynthia Vera, coordinator of the English Department, thanked the effort and preparation of all the students who participated in the competition, as they did an excellent job.

Source: Cynthia Vera

English Department Coordinator

SSR School

Alumnos del SSR intercambian cartas con pares en USA

Con el colegio ILTexas de la ciudad de Grand Prairie en estados Unidos, alumnos de 7°, 8° y I Medio de nuestro colegio mantienen un intercambio de cartas, con el fin de practicar su idioma inglés.

Cabe destacar que este establecimiento educacional enseña a sus alumnos español, por lo que nuestros jóvenes escriben en ambas lenguas cosa que exista una instancia formativa y de práctica para ambos establecimientos educacionales.

María Alejandra Schirmer, profesora de inglés, destaca el entusiasmo de los jóvenes de ambos países, quienes buscando continuar el vínculo han establecido contacto a través de las redes sociales. A su juicio es una instancia formativa diferente, más tipo “Old school”, ya que los textos se escriben a mano, involucran mayor tiempo de elaboración, lo que también tiene su mérito, ya que hay un cariño, un cuidado, una aproximación distinta en tiempos tan tecnológicos, donde el vínculo está muy mediado por la tecnología.

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Floppy’s Phonics

The Floppy’s Phonics programme teaches the letter/s-sound correspondences of the English alphabetic code explicitly and comprehensively for reading, spelling and handwriting:

  •   Systematic and structured with inbuilt rigorous revision to ensure the success of every child.
  • Rigorous teaching sequence ensuring the phonics teaching & learning is straightforward, effective and allows for differentiation in simple, but effective, ways.
  • Builds up knowledge of spelling word banks over time where words are spelt with the same letter/s-sound correspondences
  • The order of introducing the 44 sounds of the English language matches the order in ‘Letters and Sounds’ (DfES, 2007).

In other words, the Floppy’s Phonics programme helps the children learn how to pronounce words properly as we learn our mother tongue, that is by repetition, and without even knowing the meaning of a Word. This system is used all over the world to help children learn English as a second language.

It is important for children to learn letter-sound relationships because English uses letters in the alphabet to represent sounds. Phonics teaches this information to help children learn how to read. Children learn the sounds that each letter makes, and how a change in the order of letters changes a word’s meaning.

In order to continue improving our pedagogical strategies, the English teachers of our School have been participating in a training course to bring back this program to pre-school levels as it used to exist before the pandemic of the Covid-19 started.

We strongly believe this resource will make our lessons more fun and productive since we recognize children learn faster and better at early stages.

Spanish Overview: El programa Floppy’s Phonics enseña la correspondencia entre letra-sonido del código alfabético Inglés, de manera explícita y comprensiva para leer, deletrear y llegar sistemáticamente a escribir. En otras palabras, el programa Floppy’s phonics ayuda a los niños a pronunicar palabras adecuadamente como nosotros lo hacemos con nuestra lengua materna, por ejemplo, a través de la repetición e incluso sin conocer los significados de las palabras en los primeros años de vida. Este programa se enseña por todo el mundo para el aprendizaje del Inglés como segunda lengua. Es importante que los niños aprendan la relación entre letras y sonidos porque el alfabeto Inglés usa letras para representar sonidos. Para mejorar nuestras estrategias pedagógicas, los profesores de Inglés hemos participado en curso de entrenamiento para retomar este entretenido programa que ya se había implementado antes de la pandemia.

Presentación

En un mundo cada vez más globalizado y multicultural, es difícil ignorar el predominio e importancia que tiene el idioma inglés. Atrás quedó el discurso que aludía a la necesidad de “saber inglés” en caso de requerir comunicarnos con algún extranjero angloparlante, para hoy reconocer ampliamente que el manejo adecuado del idioma Inglés trae consigo ventajas en el plano educacional como en el ámbito laboral.

Considerando lo anterior es fundamental preparar a nuestros estudiantes para enfrentar los nuevos desafíos relacionados con el aprendizaje del Inglés y, aún más, certificar su nivel en el manejo de habilidades que les permita acceder a mejores oportunidades en lo académico y profesional. Por esto, a partir de este año 2022 nuestro establecimiento implementará una serie de ajustes en virtud de potenciar la enseñanza y aprendizaje del idioma Inglés.

Enseñanza y Aprendizaje del Inglés a una edad temprana.

Diversos estudios neurolingüísticos avalan el hecho que aquellos estudiantes que comienzan una exposición al idioma Inglés a temprana edad de manera formal, logran un mejor aprendizaje, comprensión y motivación frente al idioma en comparación con aquellos que lo inician de manera tardía. Además, presentan mayor capacidad de concentración, agilidad en la resolución de problemas y ejecutan más de una tarea a la vez en forma adecuada.

Hasta el año pasado nuestro establecimiento contemplaba un programa de 5 horas pedagógicas en las que la asignatura de Inglés en los niveles prekinder y kínder se  impartía de manera lúdica y dinámica, sin embargo, a contar del año 2022 se añaden otras 5 horas pedagógicas en las que se espera conseguir aún mayores logros al disponer de más tiempo de exposición al idioma, en el contexto de actividades integradoras y motivantes, principalmente orientadas a escuchar y reproducir expresiones cotidianas del idioma Inglés. De esta manera, al estar participando de manera activa en un contexto menos rígido y con mayores oportunidades de jugar, cantar, escuchar y contar cuentos, entre otras, nuestros niños avanzarán significativamente en la adquisición del idioma.

Certificaciones Internacionales para estudiantes de cuarto medio.

Tener un certificado de inglés que sea aprobado por diferentes instituciones, empresas y gobiernos alrededor del mundo es una evidencia objetiva del conocimiento que se tiene del idioma. Existen diversas certificaciones que abren puertas para estudiar o trabajar en cientos de países, no solo donde el Inglés es el idioma principal. Algunos beneficios son:

  1. Mejores oportunidades laborales.

Lograr leer, escribir y entender inglés de forma certificada proporciona mejores oportunidades para trabajar, pues resalta el currículum del postulante por sobre otros que no lo hacen.

  • Más posibilidades de conseguir un título en otro país

Universidades e instituciones de todo el mundo piden a sus postulantes obtener una certificación de inglés que demuestre que, durante su estadía en ese país y universidad, lograrán comunicarse sin problema y realizar las tareas y evaluaciones de sus clases con éxito.

  • Reconocimiento internacional

Una certificación de inglés como el TOEFL, el IELTS o el PTE Academic es reconocida de forma internacional. Por eso, al obtener un diploma de certificación, miles de empresas e instituciones de todo el mundo reconocerán al individuo como hablante y sin necesidad de rendir otros exámenes complementarios. 

Considerando todos los beneficios asociados a la certificación del nivel de Inglés es que durante este año 2022 el Colegio Seminario San Rafael se convertirá en Centro de Preparación en asociación con el Instituto Chileno Británico con el propósito que nuestros estudiantes de Cuarto Año de Enseñanza Media puedan rendir un Examen de término ya sea en su nivel B1 (Preeliminary English Test) o B2 (First Certificate). Esta certificación, financiada por nuestra Institución, goza del reconocimiento internacional antes aludido y proporciona excelentes oportunidades para quienes egresan de nuestro Colegio.

Alcances

El proyecto de Inglés involucra a toda la comunidad educativa, desde nuestros estudiantes más pequeños hasta aquellos que están próximos a dejarnos. Esperamos que también nuestros apoderados reciban esta información con mucha alegría y tomen conocimiento periódicamente de los avances que estaremos compartiendo con la comunidad en esta materia. Confiamos en que al implementar estos ajustes, nuestros estudiantes sentirán el acompañamiento constante de sus profesores y, más aún, obtendrán muchísimos logros en el aprendizaje del idioma Inglés.

Departamento de Inglés

Colegio Seminario San Rafael.