1. Move to homestay
If this is your first time in the USA, take a driver to find your homestay or your townhouse. It’s easier… If it’s too expensive, you can take a taxi. Because, it’s complicated to quickly find the right place, and it would be less stressful.
2. Check the way to ELC
If you don’t want to be late, you must check the way to the ELC. You will need a train station map and a map of Boston. Ask your roommate or your host family for some details to buy a ticket.
3. Listen carefully the information’s staff
It’s your first day…The first day in a new environment with a language that you don’t understand. But DON’T PANIC!!! It doesn’t matter if you don’t understand all the information. If you have some questions, problems or fears, you can ask the staff. Every person is very nice and kind. All information is important for your future at ELC so don’t be afraid to ask them.
4. Take the first test
It’s not your final test. So don’t panic again. It’s a test for check your level. Do your best and it will be ok.
5. The first course
After you take the test, the Director of Courses will choose your class and your level. If you are uncomfortable in your class, with your teacher or with the level, you should notify the staff as soon as possible. Then you can change to another class.
6. Lunch at student lounge
It’s important to eat in student lounge with other students. You should speak English to improve it. If you speak your native language with your friends from the same country, the other students could feel like they are isolated from the others. Also we make weekend plans in the lounge!
7. Make friends
If you want to make friends, talk with new people every day. It’s easier to meet friends, know the name of everybody and know each other. You can begin with greeting words like: “Hi”, “Nice to meet you” or “How are you today?” Be careful to be kind, nice and friendly because, if you are every time sad and depressed, nobody will want to speak with you.
8. Go to class
To make progress in English, it’s important to go to courses, speak during the lessons and ask your teacher some questions if you don’t understand something. Take with you a notepad or a notebook for writing your new vocabulary words and doing exercises.
9. Go to activities
ELC organize some activities for students to enjoy their life in Boston. There are some trips and parties. For example, you can go to visit the MFA (Museum of Fine Arts) or eat pancakes on the National Pancake Day. It’s important to sign up the list few hours before the activity. Maybe, you should bring some dollars.
10. The first weekend
The first weekend, you will be a little bit tired. It’s the jetlag, the stress or something. During your first week you spend a lot of energy to understand everything, so on the weekend, you can stay at home and talk with your family. To save your energy for the second week, it’s important to rest and be quiet at home.
By Madeline Zosso, Switzerland and Sachi Yoshikawa, Japan