Do you have plans for New Year’s Eve here in the U.S.? Then you’ll want to review this vocab list to learn the common terminology that goes with the many NYE traditions. We’ll help you get prepared for everything from watching the ball drop to making a toast at midnight.
Bridge General English and Pathways students at Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York, learned about the U.S. tradition of giving back over the holidays. Volunteers took part in an annual food donation and distribution event called the Basket Brigade.
Andressa Da Silva came to us from Brazil in an unusual way, selected in a special competition organized through the American consulate, the American Chamber of Commerce and Bridge. She is currently in the ninth week of her ten-week program and is making the most out of every single moment of this experience. Andressa has a positive attitude, magnetic personality and an amazing aptitude for learning English. I feel so lucky to have met this tremendous young woman and will be so sad to see her go. I invite you to learn more about her unique story below.
Amy: Tell me how you learned about Bridge.
Aldi Sorel is someone to admire. He came from the Gabonese Republic, which is a sovereign state on the west coast of Central Africa, to be with his mother who had already been here for ten years. He has been at BridgeEnglish Denver longer than most of the teachers and he is for sure the veteran student here having been at Bridge since 2010. He came to the U.S. with practically no English skills whatsoever and was thrown into the Denver public school system before he could even communicate with anyone. He now speaks fluent French (his native tongue) as well as fluent English and this November, after two years of studying hard at Bridge, he plans to move on and go to university to start his career as a computer engineer.
Most people think they aren’t going to experience culture shock when they move to another country. “That isn’t going to happen to me,” they might say. “It’s going to be amazing every day I am there.”
That is exactly what I thought when I moved to South America for two years. I thought that I was different, stronger or something, until one day it hit me like a ton of bricks. Coming to a new country is a challenge. It is exciting and new and scary and you don’t know exactly what to expect. Is it going to be that much different from my home country? Will I be able to adjust? So many questions go through your head even before you actually arrive in your host country. Everyone experiences culture shock differently and BridgeEnglish Denver students, whether they are here for only two weeks or for a year, must adapt to their new culture. It isn’t always that easy.
Shin Takeda was one of the executive students at BridgeEnglish Denver for the past several months. Indeed, the publishing executive finally said his teary goodbyes to us all June 22nd when he graduated. Shin had become a friend to all and was well known for the ever-present fedora on his head and his hipster style. You would catch Shin during breaks outside chatting with the other students, talking about what happened last weekend or what everyone was doing the coming weekend. He was definitely part of the social circle at BridgeEnglish Denver. If there was a party, you could be sure that Shin was there.
But Shin was also a hard worker and his English had gotten so good that sometimes I forgot he was from Japan. We all miss him so much. Here is a little more information about the coolest kid in school.
Looking back at the blog and all of the interviews I have done, I noticed something unusual. There are hardly any interviews with the female students at BridgeEnglish Denver. So, I decided to find one of our female students who has been here for a while and delve deeper into her motivation for coming to America, specifically Bridge, and for studying English. Her name is Anastasia Andriienko and she comes from the far away land of Ukraine and is our only Ukrainian student, at least since I have been here since last year. She came with almost no English except the alphabet and has moved up three levels since her arrival in January.
Are you thinking of heading to the USA to learn English here in Denver? If so, perhaps you should think about packing some blue and orange and get ready to cheer on the Denver Broncos, Colorado’s professional American football team.
The New York Giants’ Superbowl victory in early February may be well behind us and the quarterbacks and wide receivers are now nursing their hamstrings and their bank accounts in the offseason. But it won’t be long before the new season starts up again in late summer and you might well want to time your stay in Denver to coincide with the matches that take place involving Denver’s favorite professional sports team. The season runs from late August to February.
England and America are two countries separated by a common language according to the famous phrase of Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw. Warm beer versus cold beer, cricket versus baseball.
Sometimes, it certainly seems that way when teaching at BridgeEnglish Denver. As a native of the old country, I am often asked by students which spelling version of a certain word is correct. Is it color or colour (cue Microsoft red line telling me I spelled the word wrongly)? Should I use the word lift or elevator? Is it soccer or football?
Parting is such sweet sorrow at Bridge Denver for the students and teachers alike. Every Friday, there is a graduation in the student lounge to celebrate the commencement of another group of Bridge graduates ready to move onward and upward in the world now that they have gained a better ability to speak English. People cry, people laugh, pictures are taken and heartwarming speeches are given. It is difficult for most Bridge students to leave but it is especially difficult for the students who have been studying here for many months and have made Denver their second home. As 2011 comes to an end, it is time to say goodbye to another group of Bridge graduates.
One of those graduates is Akira Yamazaki. Akira has been studying at Bridge since September in the general business executive course