What makes learning English in an international school different

Goal of learning English

In many Vietnamese public schools and English centers, students often learn English as a foreign language to use in the workplace with a very limited linguistic purpose, or to take language certification exams like TOEIC, IELTS or TOEFL.

At The International School @ ParkCity Hanoi (ISPH), students learn English to use as their main language to communicate with teachers and friends in class and as a tool for learning and gaining knowledge in subjects such as as math, science, music, art and physical education. , as well as conduct research and self-study.

Primary ISPH students attend a math class. Photo courtesy of ISPH

Rik Millington, director of ISPH, said that a student for whom English is not the first language will generally take about a year to develop communicative English and about three years to master their academic English; write reports and essays, make presentations, study specialized textbooks. Therefore, if the student only focuses on communication and learning grammar, their ability in academic English will not be significantly improved because there is no “real world” application.

No longer applicable

English in international schools is taught in all subjects and is the common language used in all school activities and events. Therefore, students have an environment to practice and use English regularly, which helps them to naturally improve their English skills and progress much faster.

ISPH students in self-study at the school library.  Photo courtesy of ISPH

ISPH students participate in a self-study lesson inside the school library. Photo courtesy of ISPH

ISPH English teacher James Ellis shared that English in school is taught in different ways to suit each group of students. For preschool and primary school students, teachers will focus on vocabulary, pronunciation, phonetics, sentence structure, grammar and critical thinking in English.

For secondary school students, especially those studying the IGCSE curriculum, English is taught more intensively and comprehensively, focusing on word usage, content creation, learning different types of literary genres, writing styles, the meaning that the author wants to convey in each literary work. , as well as work analysis.

According to Ellis, the English taught in international schools is more applicable because it is linked to other subjects to create opportunities for students to practice and apply new knowledge in a practical way.

For example, when students study a subject on “superheroes”, not only do they learn about the work, but they are also encouraged to create their own hero character in the form of writing or illustration. Through this activity, vocabulary related to this subject in other subjects such as creative arts or physics is also introduced to students, allowing them to use these new words more often in school.

Learning environment

Studying in an international environment with teachers and students from many different countries around the world requires students to use English for everyday communication and as a tool to acquire knowledge in all subjects.

Nhat Minh, a 10th grade student at ISPH, said English here is taught in a natural way; students learn English not only through lessons, but also by playing, exercising and communicating. In addition, ISPH teachers are also very friendly, enthusiastic and caring. They always encourage students to ask questions and are happy to answer them to ensure all students understand a topic before moving on to a new one. This makes the ISPH learning environment friendlier and more enjoyable, helping students achieve better results.

ISPH High school students in science class.  Photo courtesy of ISPH

ISPH High school students in science class. Photo courtesy of ISPH

Bao Khue, a student who joined ISPH in the fall, can speak English freely here without worrying that her friends won’t understand what she means or think she’s bragging about her English skills.

“At ISPH, I learn plays and novels in English classes instead of just learning grammar and vocabulary like in my old school, which is much more interesting for me,” Khue said. .

Immersive learning

In addition to academic subjects, students at international schools are often encouraged to participate in a variety of extracurricular activities and have the opportunity to develop leadership and life skills.

Therefore, the English they learn at school is a practical language that covers all aspects of life, helping them to communicate freely, express their personal opinions and acquire new knowledge in English as well as to learn a new language.

ISPH students perform a Broadway musical Annie JR.  Photo courtesy of ISPH

ISPH students perform the Broadway musical Annie JR. Photo courtesy of ISPH

By studying at an international school, in addition to learning new knowledge, students also learn to use the language and think like native speakers. They are exposed to many different cultures and accents which help them develop skills and the ability to communicate and react appropriately in a multinational environment. For these reasons, students who graduate from international schools can attend any university and college in the world. They are able to confidently study abroad and achieve high results without language and cultural barriers or differences in thought, and with a greater capacity for self-study compared to native speakers.

The International School @ ParkCity Hanoi (ISPH)

ParkCity Hanoi, Le Trong Tan, Ha Dong, Hanoi

www.isph.edu.vn | info@isph.edu.vn | +84 93 44 55 228