Preparing for IELTS exams in Malta

5 Easy Steps to Prepare your IELTS Exam in Malta

How to Prepare for IELTS in Malta

Read Tips from our BELS Malta in-house IELTS Expert

In our experience there are two kinds of IELTS students, those who panic more than needed and those who are much too laidback. Use this IELTS Malta preparation guide to help you get somewhere in between those two extremes; calm down the anxious students just enough to get working, and get the stress-free students to roll up their sleeves!

1. Choose which IELTS version you need

There are two kinds of IELTS exams: IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. If you’re taking IELTS to join a University or for employment, ask whether they require a specific one beforehand. Generally speaking, you should take IELTS academic if you plan to study at an undergraduate or postgraduate level in an English-speaking country. Both exams can be taken at the IELTS Malta centre.

2. Realise that IELTS measures skill, not knowledge

It’s crucial to understand that IELTS is about language skill, not knowledge. IELTS tests your four skills (reading, listening, writing, and speaking) and assess your ability to communicate when working or studying in an English speaking environment. Therefore you to invest the time to develop your language skills all round, and not simply learn things for the exam.

3. Familiarise yourself with IELTS Malta Format

Acquire Cambridge preparation course books to become aware of the IELTS exam expectations. After some preparation, turn to tests books to see where your level is. At the beginning of the book there’s a grading guide and explanation of the exam format.

4. Join an IELTS Preparation Course at BELS

Having a professional’s guidance is recommend for exams like IELTS. With years of experience and many success stories, BELS is confident that we can give you the guidance needed. Remember that IELTS preparation courses are designed to familiarise students with the exam format and provide practice and tips for the IELTS exam. If your projected score is much higher than your current score, you should take general English courses first to focus on your language skills in general.

5. Register with the IELTS Malta Centre as soon as possible

There’s a high demand for IELTS Malta exams, and the spots get filled up quickly. As soon as you feel ready for your exam register at the IELTS Malta Centre.

For information about BELS Malta IELTS preparation courses, send us an email at [email protected].

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Some of our students at their host family in Malta

6 Benefits of Learning English with a Host Family

Choosing Host-family Accommodation in Malta

A unique opportunity to discover the local way of life

When you stay with a host-family you experience something that you won’t in other kinds of accommodation. Malta might be small, but it’s got a wealth of entertainment, history and cultural identity. In between all the traditional aspects and the nightlife scene, there’s something uniquely Maltese about the way things are done. And it’s not something that can be described as much as felt.

Here are the top reasons to consider staying with host-families in Malta:

1. Experience local life

Staying with a host-family in Malta gives you a slice of the local life. No matter how much you read about a destination’s culture and customs, the real way to get to know a place is through spending time with the locals. Get tips on what the locals do and where they go to discover Malta’s gems beyond the tourist trail.

2. Home away from home

Homes are places of warmth and familiarity to return to after a long day out and about. With our host-families, you’ll feel comfortable right away. Those who open their homes to travellers are generous and hospitable people who’ll do their best to make sure you adapt to life in Malta as another member or the family. Be prepared for hearty, home cooked meals and bonds that will last a lifetime.

3. The food

Host-families prepare breakfast and dinner for their guests. You’ll never have to worry about rushing to make a snack before setting off to school in the morning, or spending more money on dinner everyday. Even better, you’ll get to try a number of local, home-cooked meals throughout your stay. If you have any allergies or special-diets, these can be catered for as well. On the other hand, if you prefer to have meals out instead of with the family, it’s also an option.

4. Practice English on a daily basis

For English language school students in Malta choosing homestay is a chance to practice English beyond the classroom environment. Learn how the language is used in everyday situations and practice all the things you’ve learnt in class while at the same time getting to know some locals and sharing stories about your cultures.

5. Host family accommodation is still independent

Even though you’ll be staying with a family, you’ll still have an independent trip. The family you’ll be staying with will go on with their normal routine or work and all, so you don’t have to to worry about that. Most host-families give students their own key, so they can enter and leave the house as they please.

6. Value for money

Home-stays are a great value for money – it provides travellers with a richer experience. Apart from that, since it’s offered on a half-board basis, it’s an easy way to budget for your trip. You already know that you have breakfast and dinner taken care of before arrival.

If you would like to enquire about accommodation with a host-family for your language course, get in touch at [email protected].

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Students can learn English in Malta and enjoy the sun in winter

5 Reasons to Learn English in Malta in Winter

What’s learning English in Malta like in Winter?

Benefit from Low Season Rates and Learn English during the Winter season in Malta

Winter in Malta is different from most other European countries. It’s very mild and mostly lasts a few months, from October to March. The official summer is usually known to be from June till the end of August, which is also when the entire island operates using high-season rates. The months of September, October, April and May are usually blessed with the summer weather, and the added benefit of low-season rates.

The same applies to English courses with BELS in the winter months. So if improving your English skills has been on your mind lately, here are 4 brilliant reasons to learn English with us at BELS Malta and Gozo between September – May.

1.  Our English courses are on low-season rates

If you’ve been putting off studying English for financial reasons, this is a great opportunity to invest in your education. From September till June, all our English courses and accommodation options go back to our low season rates.

2. The weather is still amazing

The summer rates might be over, but Mediterranean climate makes for a pleasant stay all year round. While the weather does vary from year to year, the months of September, October and November tend to be mostly sunny. Sunny days are common all year round. And spring comes about earlier than most other countries, with people having their first swims as early as March. One thing’s for sure, Malta is warmer than most other countries at this time of the year. It’s a chance to escape the rain and gloomy weather, while also boosting your English skills.

3. You can still enjoy outdoor activities

That goes for water sport activities, as well as outdoor-activities in the likes of hiking, horse-riding, cycling etc. While the climate is still warm and the sun’s still out, the temperatures are milder, and the heat-waves are over. You can enjoy physical-activities without the extreme temperatures slowing you down.

4. Malta is less crowded

These months offer the perfect balance between high-season and winter. They’re still popular with tourists, yet the tourist-traffic is calmer than in the peak summer months. Whether it’s the beaches, restaurants or busses, there is a generally slower pace of life in Malta.

5. Perfect time to plan long-term studies

Since everything is cheaper, and the island is generally quieter, it’s a good place to relocate to for more serious studies rather than just a learning-holiday. Many students come to us for 6-12 months to take their English even further. Whether you’re on a gap-year, looking for a career change, or just a change of scenery, it’s a way to have a break and develop an essential life-skill at the same time.

Would you like to receive a free personalised quotation to learn English in Malta? Use the quote-builder below or get in touch at [email protected] and one of our team members will help you out.

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Different types of English classes for kids in Malta

6 Types of English Classes for Children and Teens

Practical English Classes for Kids and Teens in Malta

Designed for their interests, learning needs and age by our industry experts.

Apart from our selection of adult English classes, here at BELS we also offer English for kids in Malta. Our English for kids programme is planned especially to interest and engage young minds into the language. All of our English courses for kids are interactive and provide students with practical language they can use to express themselves in their daily lives. By joining our courses, students will develop a new perspective and love for the language, with lifetime benefits.

Our team of qualified teachers create an English for kids programme that is tailor-made especially for young learners. At BELS we promote the communicative teaching approach and blended learning approach in order to provide the most effective and engaging learning experience.

1. General English courses (only) for young-learners (7-16)

If you’re travelling to Malta as part of your family holiday and would like your children to take part in a social and educational experience, our BELS courses for kids in Malta are a great way to get more from your holiday. When learning English in Malta, kids will experience an immersive learning experience which will effectively boost their language skills.

These courses are possible in the mornings or afternoons so you can choose which option suits your family plans best. To register for courses only, children must be travelling with an adult.

2. Parent and child programme (7-15)

The BELS parent and child programme is ideal for adults who want to learn English for themselves but do not wish to travel alone. It’s possible to improve your English during adult courses while also enjoying a family holiday. You don’t have to put off your English-learning ambitions or worry about finding a baby-sitter, we have programmes for both adults and children during the summer, autumn and Easter holidays. Our English courses for adults and young learners re conveniently held at the same time as the adult courses, so you can study English at ease, knowing your child is engaged and entertained in our English for kids programme in a nearby classroom.

We can also provide leisure packages, accommodation and airport transfers on this programme.

3. Full teen camp for juniors travelling alone (10-16)

Our full teen camp programmes are organised during the school breaks every summer, autumn and Easter. The BELS teen camps are made especially for young travellers between the ages of 10 and 16. It’s a chance to combine adventure with education, all the while enjoying Malta’s crystal clear waters, captivating history and indulging in the island’s rich culture. The juniors can travel alone from their home countries and we’ll welcome them at the airport arrival’s lounge in Malta. From their, their whole trip is taken care of. We provide full-board accommodation, a full leisure programme including all transport and 3 hours of English courses per day. Children will be accompanied by BELS leaders at all times – so you can rest assured that they are safe and being taken care of. Some of our BELS leaders also live in the same residence and we’ll provide an emergency number for you to use if needed, after booking.

4. Course and leisure full-day programmes for juniors (10-16)

Another option is for teenagers who would like more independence while travelling with family is to join our course and leisure programme. It’s an opportunity for young ones to have an engaging social and educational experience with peers of their own age. On this programme, children will be attending leisure actives and English courses for a full day, from early morning till the evening. While on this programme, they are fully supervised and all transportation is included.

Since the family will also be here, our programme is very flexible and students can choose which activities to participate in. If you prefer to have more family time, just inform us and we’ll adapt our programme for you.

5. Exam preparation courses

Older teenagers who are approaching school leaving examinations in their home-country can choose to prepare for their English exams during their time at BELS Malta. These courses focus on building the skills necessary for students to successfully complete their examinations and use authentic exam material. Apart from focusing on language skills (reading, writing, listening, speaking) and all areas of the language (grammar, vocabulary, phonology, discourse), these courses will also develop 21st century skills (collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, communication).

6. Individual English lessons for kids in Malta & Gozo

During the weeks when we do not run our group courses we can always provide individual lessons for students between the ages of 4-15. Individual lessons are possible at both our BELS Malta school in St.Paul’s Bay and BELS Gozo school in Kercem. All individual lessons are tailor-made for the student’s particular interests, level of English and learning requirements. Our teachers plan course content that is also relevant to the ages in both topics and learning methods to ensure the lessons are useful and effective.

If you would like more information about our English for kids in Malta programme, email us on [email protected].

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How to learn English grammar online at home

How to Learn English Grammar Online

5 Simple Steps to Improve your English Grammar Online

Learn what it takes to make progress on your own.

If you’re the type of person who’d rather learn English online in the comfort of your pyjamas, here’s what you need to do:

1. Get familiar with terminologies and structures

The first step towards learning English grammar online is learning the parts of speech. There are eight word groups in English: Nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, interjections. Once you understand these, every grammar point you come across will become simpler to follow.

2. Study the tenses

You need to know your tenses. Get hold of a book that is graded to your level of English. You can find grammar books for beginners, elementary, intermediate, upper-intermediate or advanced level students. There are also a number of websites that you can use to learn English grammar online. At this stage, it’s necessary to learn the past tense and past participle verbs off by heart, as they are important to most grammar tenses.

3. Test yourself

Create flashcards, find games online and register to some online learning platforms like Doulingo, or join a short course to see how you’re progressing and also discover useful tactics and coursebooks that might help you. Since there is a lot to remember, repetition is important.

4. Use in real life situations

Learning grammar is essential – without it, you can’t speak a language. But with grammar alone, you won’t be able to speak either. Once you learn a grammar point, look for contexts in which you need this grammar point. For example, if you’re learning the 3rd conditional – you can use it to express regrets, or if you’re learning the present perfect, you can use it to describe travel experiences. Practice using the newly learnt grammar in meaningful ways that relates to you and your everyday use of English.

5. Online Lessons

Language is a living thing – once you’ve learnt enough communicate you’ve got to start speaking! Online lessons are a great way to practice speaking what the English grammar you learned online. A teacher will be there to correct your mistakes and guide you on your weak points.

Start learning English online quickly and effectively. Get in touch on [email protected] for more information on online lessons and improving grammar.

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Experience the local life in Malta

How to Experience the Local Life in Malta

Have a Unique Stay in Malta and Discover the Local Way of Life

Read tips from our local team members!

Malta’s loved for retaining its rustic charm and distinctive character even after parts of it have hopped on the train of modernity. Through all the changes over time, there’s still something uniquely Maltese about the way of life that lingers on. If you’re the kind of person who loves to listen to the story a new place has to tell, here’s how to get the most out of your trip and experience the local life.

1. Avoid the touristic centres in Malta

Sliema and St. Julian’s are the place to be for a good night out or a day of shopping. While you can find some divine eateries and a couple of traditional houses, it’s mostly commercial places. You won’t get a real feel of Malta if you stay there.

When in Malta, look for rustic villages or the less commercial towns like St. Pauls Bay and Mellieha in the North or Maraskala and Marsaxlokk in the south of the island. These places have a choice of natural, entertainment and historical places in their surroundings. And besides, wherever you stay in Malta, you’re just a short bus ride away from everything else.

2. Make use of Hostels, Airbnbs and Host-families in Malta

To get a genuine taste of the local life stay in apartments when studying English in Malta. They’re likely to be in local neighbourhoods, away from the hectic touristy places. It would be even better to try a host-family experience. It’s an opportunity to try home cooked Maltese food and pick up fresh produce from the road-side markets.

3. Find hidden locations and local restaurants

Anything that comes up on a surface level of a google search is usually a tourist place surrounded by tourist traps. To get off the beaten track you’ve got to venture past the first page of google. Ask some locals or look up articles written by travel bloggers studying English in Malta, they’ve got a knack for adventure. Get lost, you might find yourself somewhere beautiful. The best thing about studying English in Malta is knowing you’re safe (and we’ve got Taxify for those emergency situations).

For information about studying English in Malta and Gozo, contact us at [email protected]. or get a quote on the link below.

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