SEI 2017 Day 12 Update

Core English Classes Focus on Building Confidence

J.M. Barrie, author of the famous whimsical tale, Peter Pan once said, “The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease forever to be able to do it.”  Confidence is key when learning English; therefore, at SEI each of our staff members works hard to build the individual confidence of every student. According to Intermediate middle school English teacher, Mrs. Krogh, “everything we do in the core English classes is aimed at improving the spoken and written English of our students, and ultimately their confidence. We do this through instruction in grammar and composition and through vocabulary development using daily themes and classroom novels.”

Today in Ms. Miller’s School Prep Track English class, students wrote and presented historical newscasts as a way to build their confidence and display their writing and speaking abilities. Additionally, in Mr. Van Noord’s class students presented their historical research in small groups. Every teacher at SEI is working hard to encourage their students and increase their confidence.


5 Primary Ways SEI Staff Members Build Student Confidence

1. They offer praise and acknowledge students’ accomplishments, both in private and in front of their classmates.

2. They try not to immediately correct every speaking error. They do not interrupt the student when they are talking to correct them, as this will harm their confidence – not boost it. Teachers wait to correct and encourage the students until they have finished sharing.

3. They set attainable goals from the start of SEI. This is a surefire way for students to see how much they have grown.

4. They create opportunities for students to succeed by building on their strengths. If a student knows a lot of information about something, teachers ask them to tell them about it. “I am unfamiliar with how the new audio system works, can you please explain it to me?” Asking students for their help is a great confidence boost to their ego.

5. They encourage students to do better than they did before. It’s important for students to compete against themselves not their classmates.

Learning Through Field Trips

At SEI, it is important for each student to not only experience the classic American classroom, but to also learn in different ways, by going outside of the classroom. Many teachers plan SEI field trips as a way to help the students grow in their understanding of American culture, and to tour more of California, USA.  Today, Mr. and Mrs. Krogh’s intermediate English classes visited Stater Brothers Market (an American grocery store) and were given a full tour of the entire store, including the meat market, produce section, inventory stocking, and customer service desk. Taking students on field trips enhances their confidence to speak English to new people, and often times pushes them outside of their comfort zone. Vocabulary that is learned in context is more easily retained. Being in a real life situation impresses on students the necessity of learning vocabulary so they can function well in different scenarios. Before going on the field trip, students developed recipes for an American meal, and then calculated the estimated cost of the ingredients. Upon arriving at the store, the students were asked to find each of the ingredients on their list and calculate the actual cost. Once back in class, students expressed which items were more expensive than they originally assumed. Mrs. Krogh believes that, “learning naturally occurs when exploring new places, such as an American grocery store”.

SEI STAFF HIGHLIGHT: School Prep Track Teacher, Mr. Nate Van Noord

Mr. Van Noord currently teaches middle school in Detroit, MI but has also taught English as a Second Language in Seoul, South Korea. In his free time, he has traveled extensively through Asia, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. He has three older siblings and eight nieces and nephews.

Fun fact: He enjoys playing sports and competing in storytelling competitions.

Contact Information

Every day during SEI, you will receive a Daily Update informing you of what took place throughout the day at SEI – we will share photos, highlight stories and feature video clips. We hope you look forward to hearing about what is going on daily at SEI!

If you have any questions or concerns, please email us at or contact the SEI parent hotline at 951-240-1409 for immediate assistance.