Just Arrived? Been here a long time? Professionally Trained?
Learn, improve, perfect your English to:
Open up work and professional opportunities
Broaden education choices
Strengthen community connections
English Language classes or English as a Second Language (ESL) is an affordable English language training program funded by theOntario Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services. St. Louis Adult Learning and Continuing Education Centres is the largest English language class provider in Waterloo Region & surrounding area open to newcomers and citizens who have been here both a short time or a long time. All students are 18 years of age and older and English is not their first language.
BENEFITS of taking English classes at St. Louis…. English for School, Work, LIFE!
Students quickly develop strong English language communication skills and learn everything they need to know to live, work and learn in Canada. All ESL and LINC English Language classes teach the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing using Portfolio Based Language Assessment.
If you have had a language assessment in the last two years by the YMCA or in class or have been placed on a waiting list, you may qualify for acceptance into a St. Louis ESL remote learning class. The YMCA can confirm which English Language class you are eligible for and which language level you are at.
Canadian Language Benchmarks – What do they mean?
The Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLBs) are used in Canada to teach and test language learning for adults. It is important to understand the CLBs if planning to go to English class, train, look for work or study at a College or University. The benchmarks describe tasks that people can do in listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Literacy and Level 1: Welcome to English School! We will help you start to learn English.
Level 2 and 3: You will develop and have an adequate knowledge of simple spoken and written communication to function in the community like shopping, going to the doctor and speaking to your children’s teacher.
Level 4: You know enough English, now, that you could begin to apply for Canadian Citizenship. Or you can consider taking a specialized English Language class. Call 519-745-1201 for details.
Level 5 and 6: Your English should be good enough to get and keep a job and gain some Canadian work experience. Don’t stop learning English. Continue in your ESL classes and keep moving forward to the next CLB level. Or take a different ESL class that will help you improve your soft skills, pronunciation, computer or customer service skills. Once you have completed level 6, you may continue to improve your reading, writing skills or you can apply to take the St. Louis Culinary Arts Training, or Hairstylist and Barber Training.
Level 7+: At this level you can begin to take other classes at St. Louis, including working toward earning Secondary School Credits, or developing employment skills with Personal Support Worker Training.
English Language Classes through the ESL program offer the following in person and limited online classes:
CLB 1 to CLB 7+
Listening and Speaking
Reading and Writing
Open to all students!
What will I learn?
Listening: You will be able to understand spoken English in a variety of situations including going to the doctor, shopping or visiting your children’s school.
Speaking: You will develop your English language vocabulary and be able to speak to others in increasingly complex ways and in a variety of situations including job interviews, speaking with your doctor to name a few.
Reading: You will be able to understand written texts like application forms, instructions, personal and professional emails and bank statements or more advanced academic reading and workplace relevant examples
Writing: You will be able to write in English to help you complete job applications, fill out forms and prepare documents, craft business emails, write a letter to your children’s teacher as well as prepare for academic writing, essays and reports.
What is Portfolio-Based Language Assessment (PBLA)?
Portfolio Based Language Assessment is a standard in-class assessment process that instructors use in all St. Louis ESL and LINC classes in Canada as a way to measure your language abilities. Each student receives a Language Companion binder to collect and show what they can do in listening, speaking, reading and writing in English. Task-based learning will help you achieve this. Your portfolio is reviewed by your instructor and used to help inform your progress results.
ESL is offered at multiple locations at various times through St. Louis Adult Learning and Continuing Education Centres.
Please find below the class dates, times and locations that these programs are offered.
ESL students who attend class, may be purchase a spot in our licensed child care centre for your pre-school age child. Note licensed child care is not open in Summer.
While you are learning English, your child will:
learn through play
interact with other children
develop skills and language appropriate for their ages
Warm and caring staff strive to provide fun and educational activities to support children’s settlement in Canada. The best possible atmosphere for children’s development and learning is created by establishing relationships between staff and families built on mutual respect. While ESL adult parents are learning or improving their English language skills, their pre-school children are as well… Everyone is learning English and growing in so many ways!
St. Louis ESL teachers are teaching ESL from their classrooms either in-person or online (depending on the class)
At minimum, English Language instructors at St. Louis have their Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) Ontario qualifications and many have worked in the field and at St. Louis for 10 years plus. Our ESL teachers use everyday tasks and real-world examples to help refugees, permanent residents, landed immigrants… (and citizens too) develop their English, while settling, integrating and discovering Canadian culture.