How to find the right language school?

Hi guys,

To get the most out of my au pair stay in Ireland, I want to take part in a language course. Of course I’m improving my English all the time in my daily life here – when I’m talking to my host family, to other au pairs and people I meet, or when I go out to a pub or café. But a language course helps at another level to learn new vocabulary and the right grammar. Plus, it gives me the chance to meet other peoples from other cultures who also want to improve their English skills.

So last week I started looking for a good language school. It was more difficult than I thought to find a school and schedule a course because I only have time in the evenings and only one or two times a week. For the first steps of such a search there are various possibilities:

  1. Ask your host family
  2. Ask other au pairs (au pairs you know and all au pairs in a facebook group)
  3. Google it

I decided to google it at first because Google has been my best friend from the moment I arrived here in my new country. When I didn’t know the way and felt lost, I asked Google maps. When I looked for good tips about what to do and to see here in Dublin, I asked Google. When I didn’t understand a word, I asked Google to translate it. Thank you Google for always being there for me when I needed you. Okay, sorry I make a little digression there. :-) So I asked Google for good language courses, but I didn’t find a good one. The search results seemed to only show full-time courses.

Then I asked my host family who had information from the last au pair. The recommendation of the au pair was in principle good, because the school was not far away, but they were only offering full time courses at the moment. Possibly, your host family already has information about suitable courses at a good school. Either way, it is important to talk with your host family about the language course you will want to attend because you need to know when is the best time to schedule your course. Clarify who shall pay the fee for the course. It depends on the host country if you as an au pair bear these costs or the host family. You can find more information about this on the Info host countries pages at AuPairWorld.

IMG_8380So my next step was to ask other au pairs. I’m in a Facebook group called Au pairs in Dublin and I posted my question there. And this was a really good idea. I got a lot of answers and I’ve now found what seems to be a good language course.

The course will start next week and is on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. I booked for 4 weeks to begin with and will see how it goes. Depending on how things develop, I have the option then to extend it for another 4 or 8 weeks. The language schools usually also offer placement tests, in order to make sure that learners are placed in the right level. I’ll keep you updated on how it all works out :-)

Good to know: In some cities or towns and under certain conditions, you as a language student might be entitled to some kind of discount on transport tickets, in cinemas, museums, etc. You may receive a student card upon presentation of your enrolment confirmation in a language course, which entitles you to reduced offers. Ask for it in your language school. :-)

Talk to you soon

Ellen :-)

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