If you’re reading this, chances are you do not need English language instruction, but maybe you have a friend or family member in need of coursework or resources for learning English. Or, you’re using Google Translate to be able to read this text in your native language. Either way, compiled here is a list of resources to help with proficiency in using the English language.
My blog article from last month focused on learning Dutch in the Delft area, both in-class and remotely. While there are many opportunities to take Dutch courses in person in Delft, there are not nearly so many options for English language courses. Most language schools in South Holland are in The Hague and Rotterdam. For this blog post, I will be highlighting schools in Delft and The Hague.
Why learn English?
English is the most widely spoken language in the world. Although online sources state that in 2021, Chinese is spoken by the largest number of people, English is the language of choice in the broader sense. This is because English is spoken in the largest number of countries throughout the world (118), is recognized as the official language in the most countries (59), is by far the dominant language on the internet and is the primary language of technical and scientific journals. Furthermore, English is the preferred language of international business. Being able to speak, read and write in English will:
- Give you a competitive edge when seeking employment
- Make traveling to other countries easier and more enjoyable
- Help you succeed in your career
- Build bridges with people of other cultures
See more interesting statistics regarding the prevalent use of English around the world in Anil Yadav’s article here.
English language corner in delft
Delft MaMa member Zsofia Patil owns this business which offers English language courses for adults and young teenagers. Zsofia hails from Hungary, but has lived in The Netherlands since 2007 and is a fluent English speaker. She teaches conversational English, business English, test preparation for the IELTS, TOEFL, FCE and CAE exams, as well as offering French language courses. Classes are taught either at her home near Delft Station or at students’ homes. If a student lives far away, she will teach online. Both morning and evening classes are available. The cost is €30 for a private 60-minute session or €40, total, for two people. Zsofia emphasizes that she always incorporates cultural teaching with language instruction for better integration. Visit Language Corner here.
english voice academy in delft
Another Delft MaMa member, Roya Caviglia, established the English Voice Academy. Roya, a native English speaker from the UK, had many years of experience teaching English as a foreign language in other language schools and companies before setting up English Voice Academy.
English As A Common Denominator
Roya found that, as a mother in a trilingual family (English, Italian and Dutch are spoken in her home), supports were needed for families raising multilingual children. Thus, the concept for English Voice Academy was born: the creation of a community of families with a common goal of continual language learning together. On the website for English Voice Academy, you will find helpful blog articles and family projects/activities. There is also a Facebook group and a You Tube channel. English courses are designed with a goal of having all family members work together on their communication in English. Roya has also held events for multinational families to connect, such as a book swap and “English in the Park,” taught by team member Hellen Chandra-Boortman (also a Delft MaMa member!).
Transitions in learning english at english voice academy
Like most language schools, English Voice Academy has undergone changes since the pandemic began. First, Roya and her team switched to online classes. Now, another shift is occurring as Roya is moving to Switzerland in the near future. She is committed to continuing to support the families with whom she has been working for many years as well as building a community of international families. Roya plans to continue to provide ways for multicultural, multilingual families to connect with and support each other. The teaching of actual English courses will be largely taken over by her team during this transition. Roya plans to focus on writing articles for her blog and innovating ways to connect international families. To become a part of this international support network, sign up for the free community newspaper, The Academy Press.
Language Corner Delft and English Voice Academy team members will be offering a language café. This group will either meet at the library or in a café in central Delft. Here you will be able to participate in conversation with people learning the following languages: English, Spanish, French, German and Dutch. They are also hoping to add fluent speakers of Russian and Chinese to this group. Watch for this on the LANGUAGE CORNER website.
If you are a student or staff member at TU Delft, there are many courses available to you at the university. Separate English courses are offered for the following people:
- BSc/MSc Students
- PhD Candidates
- Non-teaching Staff
Note that these courses are designed to meet the needs of their specific audiences. For example, the name of the required textbook for TU Delft students is Grammar for Academic Purposes.
TU Delft also offers Self-Study English. You will see on their website that a wealth of online resources are listed, including EnglishPage.com, EnglishClub.com, online dictionaries, pronunciation guides, writing labs and more. Here you will find both written and auditory lessons, quizzes, flashcards, games and worksheets.
Private Tutoring for english learning in delft
You can find private English tutors by contacting each of the language schools mentioned in this article or by going to the following websites:
- firsttutors.com (out of the UK; reviews vary widely online)
- preply.com (there are many more negative than positive reviews for this organization online)
english language learning in the hague
If you are willing to travel, there are several language schools in The Hague. These are a 25- to 40-minute commute by train or tram from Delft Central Station. Highlighted below are a few options.
ABC English Language Academy
This language school offers ‘Covid-safe’ in-class courses as well as private tutoring. Courses include:
- Conversational English. This class is for students at level B1 or higher. The next courses are available beginning on 1 November and 29 November. The tuition is €299 and €260, respectively. Classes run for eight sessions on Monday and Wednesday evenings for two hours. Maximum number of students is 20.
- Grammar & Vocabulary. This course is given for levels A2-B2 and runs for four weeks, focusing on both spoken and written English. There is a morning class that began on 11 October, but it is possible to join late. This is on Monday and Wednesday from 09:45-11:45. The evening courses follow the same schedule as the Conversational English, above, with the same tuition costs.
- Intensive English. If your schedule allows for four or five days of in-class lessons per week, then at ABC English you can find 40, 60 or 100 contact hours spread over four weeks. The costs are €550, €999 and €1275, respectively. These classes are for students at levels A1 to C1 (three different levels taught on the same schedule). Upcoming courses begin on 1 November.
Click here to find testimonials and much more information at ABC English’s website.
This writer found many positive reviews online for Kickstart School. This school offers a hybrid course format (combination of classroom and remote learning) for levels A1 to C2. The cost per hour decreases if you sign up for more course hours. For example, 9 lessons of 2.5 hours each costs €360, but 18 lessons is €675 and 27 lessons costs €945. Most courses begin monthly and class sizes are kept small (up to 8 students). Courses are offered in the morning and evening, meeting once or twice a week. There is also an intensive summer course.
Taal Taal is located in the Scheveningen region of The Hague, about 40 minutes from Delft central train station. Courses are in the classroom, but Taal Taal also offers online lessons, if desired. Many levels of English study are available, up to level C1. In combination with your course, you may participate for free in their Thursday evening program, “All-You-Can-Talk.” This is an informal gathering where students can practice English conversation. A series of 11 lessons, meeting once per week for 1.5 hours each, will run you €238. Taal Taal also offers intensive courses which are private lessons of 15 hours divided over one or two weeks. These private lessons cost €975. Current courses began on 20 September, but it is possible to join a course already in progress.
Ways to supplement your studies and practice english
Of course, there is no better way to improve your language skills than by immersing yourself as much as possible in the use of the language. Try using English to communicate with anyone you encounter, from neighbors and friends to employees at stores and servers at restaurants.
Find a language exchange buddy (in Delft area or beyond)
There are many ways to find someone with whom to practice your speaking skills. Online you will find many websites for this including Tandem.net and MyLanguageExchange. Or, reach out on any social media groups to which you belong. Chances are good that you will find someone who is eager to work on their English conversation skills or a native speaker who is happy to help you.
Other outlets for learning english in delft area
Zsofia Patil of Language Corner Delft recommends joining a sports club, volunteering, going to theatres to watch movies or plays in English, and watching TV in English. You may also find people with whom to practice your English speaking at your church, Meetups, or by connecting with other parents at your child’s school.
DOK, the central library in Delft, has a large collection of books in English for all reading levels. Don’t be afraid as an adult to start in the children’s section!
There is a myriad of educational material available online for free, including You Tube videos, worksheets and targeted grammar lessons. If you are self-motivated to put in the time, you could save money by teaching yourself using all of these resources. However, most people prefer the structure of taking at least one classroom course, and taking a class will also connect you with other learners with whom you might practice.
To Your Success!
The resources mentioned in this article do not encompass an exhaustive list, but I hope it gives you or someone you know a starting point. Feel free to leave comments in the comment section below. English is not an easy language, but it is not among the most difficult, either. Keep reading, listening and practicing. Most people will have patience and appreciate your efforts to learn another language. Happy studying!