There are several excellent reasons for learning English through the English Language Learners (ELL) Department at Blue Ridge School (BRS). Our international students learn, most importantly, how to be an excellent academic student where English is the primary language. They are immersed in American academic culture and learn not only the English language, but also American culture, celebrations, festivals and way of life. Our students enjoy films, music, sports and a whole array of outdoor programs and project-based learning (PBL) tasks which encompass all positive aspects of boy-centered learning while being totally immersed in the English language.
Learning the English language can bring a great deal of personal satisfaction and pleasure as well as academic success at BRS. Completing the ELL program at BRS will open up a much broader range of future academic and work opportunities by paving the way for studying at higher education institutions across America. By strengthening communication, reading comprehension, literacy and writing skills in English through a Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) Teaching Approach, the ELL program prepares international students for a smooth transition into the existing BRS mainstream courses, such as mathematics, science, English literature and history, etc.
A BRS ELL graduate and subsequent university student with honed English language skills will have created a greater advantage for himself prior to entering the globalized business world where English is by far the preferred language.
Click here to read more about Mr. Cole, the Director of the ELL Department.
First Year ELL
The first year program is for 9th and 10th grade students in their first year at Blue Ridge School. It is an intensive program that is perfect for those students who need extra language support as they transition to social and academic life at Blue Ridge School. Students at the first year ELL level will take an ELL English class and an ELL World History course.
ELL American Studies
The ELL American Studies program is for second and third year ELL students at Blue Ridge School. Students in these sections learn the English language through the study of American history, literature, music, and culture. Classes take advantage of BRS's close proximity to several of America's most historical sites: ELL field trips include visits to the homes of former U.S. Presidents Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, Civil War battle sites throughout Virginia, and our nation's capital, Washington D.C.
BRS also offers a TOEFL Prep course for 11th and 12th grade students who are preparing for college entry. Students will see a decided difference in their TOEFL scores after taking this course in which they learn strategies to improve reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills important to taking the TOEFL test.
We encourage international families considering a Blue Ridge School education to read more about our International Program. Should you have any questions regarding the ELL or International Programs, please contact our Mr. Peter Cole (434-985-2811 ext 177).
In my years at Blue Ridge, I watched Mr. Cory Woods change boys by showing them that they could in fact jump farther or climb higher. It was incredible to see boys who had never been exposed to the outdoors jumping off rock ledges into swimming holes or taking a tough mountain bike trail and then excitedly telling their friends what they had accomplished.
Both he and Mrs. Carrie Woods are a huge part of the reason I am a student at UC, Boulder!
- Max Koneff ’14