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Posts Tagged ‘Learn a language’

Learn a Language, Transform your Career

Monday, July 24th, 2017

If you’re a secondary school student, in the 6th form, at University or even considering a career change, have you ever considered what learning a new language can do for you? You should. The opportunities are vast!

Did you know that the following languages are not only in the top ten of most spoken languages globally, but they have been cited as being in the top ten list of languages needed to secure the UK’s future!

  • Chinese Mandarin
  • Spanish
  • English
  • Russian
  • Japanese
  • Italian
  • German

Is it smart, then, to learn more languages? You bet it is! No wonder the government has included a language requirement in its full slate of EBacc subjects.

Locally, too, more schools across Greater Manchester and East Cheshire are offering a wider range of languages. Manchester Grammar offers GCSE Russian, for instance!

Open doors to an exciting future

Nelson Mandela once said, ‘If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.’

There’s no doubt whatsoever that learning one of these aspirational languages can offer untold career and social opportunities to young people. Learning intercultural skills also helps you become more resourceful, independent and respected.

Lucrative career opportunities abroad are waiting to be snapped up by forward-thinking people who have another language or two on their belt. Will that be you?

Language tutors aplenty

Here at 121 Home Tutors, we have a clutch of fantastic language specialists available.

So, when you fancy taking advantage of some Russian tuition in Wilmslow or the Alderley Edge area, trying out Japanese or Mandarin, or perfecting a European language, call us straight away.

How to Stop Summer Brain Drain

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

The dreaded ‘brain drain’ strikes again! It’s a proven fact that children can lose two months’ worth of knowledge if their brains are not academically challenged.

And worse, once back in September, they can take up to a month to get into the swing of things. That’s a quarter of a year of learning lost every year!

With the long school holiday beckoning, what can parents like you in the Manchester and Cheshire area DO to stop brain drain from happening?

Discover the world

Day out with the kids offers plenty of opportunities to get out and about and LEARN. Museums, Discovery Centres – the works! Here’s some top ideas for the Manchester area!

Learn a language

MUZZY is a fun, interactive programme to help your child learn a second language.

Read ‘n Write

Even if your child can’t stand reading, there are still ways to inspire them to grab a book!

  • Start with their interests… If your child loves sport, find a non-fiction or autobiography to read or listen to on audio
  • Check out Love Reading 4 Kids. Their Summer Reading section even separates reading ages out. AND gives you downloadable extracts before you buy
  • Get them to write a review of each book or audio. They could even create a WordPress blog for free and do it online! A great way to hook their interest in reading. Plus become an online author!

Tuition for smart learning

Is your child taking the Trafford test, or school entrance exam in September – or starting in year 7, year 10 or year 12? A smart move could be to book a summer holiday tutor to get them ahead of the game!

It’s the ideal way to not only address any weaknesses left festering at the end of term, but it’s a great opportunity to help your child truly leap ahead.

Call our 1-2-1 Home Tutors team when you need any help with your child’s studying. From Maths, English and 11 Plus, to language learning and science subject support.


The Big Benefits to Summer Learning

Monday, July 4th, 2016

With some schools in Manchester and Cheshire already breaking up for the summer, that means many children have almost two months off. And even if your child has a 6 week break, it’s still a LONG time without any learning whatsoever.

Did you know that American studies have concluded that ‘brain drain’ is real? Children experience learning loss when they have an extended summer break, and then take up to a month or more to re-focus on school again in the autumn.

Just as important as keeping the body active, kids’ brains need to be stimulated too. Tempting as it might be to do zilch over the summer hols, children massively benefit from some regular brain gym.

And if your child is facing GCSE or A level re-sits, embarking on year 7, 10 or 12 – or is in year 5 and sitting a grammar school entry exam soon – July and August are opportune months to maintain their thinking skills.

How to keep your child’s brain ticking over

1. Read read read

If your child won’t read a paperback, get them listening to audio books in the car or plane. It’ll stimulate both their language knowledge and imagination.

2. Step back in time

Get them hooked on history to inspire curiosity and provoke thinking. Luckily, the Manchester area is spoilt for choice with museums. Ideal for discovery days out. Here are just a few!

3. Be part of the digital revolution

Keep your child’s writing skills updated. Because it’s so easy to set up a blog nowadays, why not encourage your child to write a blog?

With a real audience, they can update it with days out, articles about interests, reviews of films/games – even a travelogue of the family summer holiday complete with uploaded pics.

4. Learn in half the time with private tuition

For subject specific learning, why not hire a tutor over the summer? It’s a great way to not only address any weaknesses and problems left festering at the end of term, but is a great opportunity to truly leap ahead.

Call our 1-2-1 Home Tutors dream team when you need any help with your child’s studying. From Maths, English and 11 Plus, to language learning and science subject support.

Learn a language to open new doors

Monday, December 7th, 2015

The UK is a global country. With every corner of the world opening up, business and career opportunities are too…

China, once considered a threat to the west, is now a serious commercial player. Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, speaks fluent Chinese. Nestle’s CEO, Paul Burke, speaks six languages – explaining ‘Being multilingual creates a stronger connection with peers, employees and consumers.’

Language learning has never been more important. It is now statutory at Key Stage 2 and 3, though still an option at GCSE level. Sadly there has been a drop in GCSE Language uptake in French and German over the past two years, despite results being the highest ever.

Yet, the facts are clear. Learning a European and world language literally opens new doors.

1. Germany is the biggest exporting nation in Europe, offering unlimited opportunities to German-speaking job seekers.

2. There’s been an increase in schools offering Mandarin Chinese.

3. Here are ten languages highly sought-after by employers. German, Spanish and French are much in demand. But what are the other seven? Take a peek!

There’s little doubt that multilingual young people DO have more opportunities than monolingual job seekers. Not only that, but learning a language boosts cognitive skills too. This means children can develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills faster than their peers!

Plus research reveals that children who speak a second language perform better in tests and exams. Worth learning the lingo, don’t you think?

Foreign language tutors on your doorstep

We find here at 1-2-1 Home Tutors that it pays to think ahead. If your child is struggling to get to grips with a modern language today, private tuition can open those doors tomorrow.

Call us for help whether you’re in Wilmslow, Cheadle or Stockport – or anywhere across Cheshire and Manchester.


What motivates us to learn?

Monday, June 3rd, 2013

At 121 Home Tutors we constantly exploring ways to engage students who have fallen out of love with learning, Our tutors are often faced with children (and adults) who have given up. Maybe they struggled with a topic for so long that learning became a chore. Maybe they struggled in the classroom because of a lack of confidence or dyslexia. Whatever the reason instead of learning being a wonderful way to discover new things and develop new skills it becomes a bore.

So why do some people love learning and enjoy it? And how can we ‘switch’ on those who have lost their way? We gathered some resources together for you to explore your own motivation.

What motivates us to learn

What motivates us to learn foreign languages

The truth about what motivates us 

The top three tips to come out of all these resources are:

–       Punishment and reward isn’t a good way to motivate learning and can often crush creativity and the desire to learn.

–       Students need an intrinsic reason to learn (something within themselves) rather than an outside motivator, that could be something as simple as being able to communicate with a  friend who lives in a foreign country.

–       All learners need to work towards being good at something (mastery) rather than setting themselves up to fail by thinking they are dumb (or smart, which can create just as many problems).

If you’d like to know more about how one to one tutoring can help with motivation then call 121 Home Tutors today. We cover Manchester and Cheshire.

Is your nest empty?

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

If your child has gone off to university then you might suddenly find yourself with a quiet house and some spare time on your hands. Lots of people love this new freedom but many parents struggle with empty nest syndrome. No doubt the last few weeks have been hectic and emotional – getting your son or daughter ready for uni, shopping trips for house essentials and then that final trip to drop them off. It’s a big change for both of you. But what next as a parent?

One thing you can do is view this as an opportunity – to reclaim a sense of self, carve out some much needed personal time and expand your life through new hobbies and interests.

  • You might have spent the last few years investing in education and tutoring for your child. How about investing that money in your own education , for example we offer one to one drawing and painting tutoring with art teachers in Didsbury, Manchester. Or if you’ve always fancied taking up a musical instrument, now could be the time, at 121 Home Tutors we have tutors offering music theory and composition across Didsbury, South Manchester and Wilmslow. They teach instruments including piano, flute, guitar, sax and oboe.
  • Maybe you fancy living abroad or just spending a bit more time in another country?  Parents of children we tutor tell us they’ve suddenly found they have the time to consider a more peaceful life, choosing to spend time in countries such as France, Spain or Germany. It could even be the start of a whole new life!
  • Have you held back on your career development? You might have been stuck in the same job for years. Now is your chance to start a new career and private tutoring can be a great way to take the first step. If you’ve been out of education for a long time then the support of a private tutor can help you to get the best out of any course. 121 Home Tutors can also arrange intensive tutoring in specific areas which mean you can learn quickly in a very personal and supportive environment.
  • We have a number of tutors who work in professional areas, such as accountancy. If you want to take the next step in your current career then they can help with exams and general confidence in your subject and workplace.
  • We know you’ll never forget about your kids but it’s worth remembering that uni students struggle with study too. We have a number of university students who come to us for private tutoring and we are able to find tutors for most degree subjects in Manchester and Cheshire (we cover central Manchester and outlying areas such as Wilmslow and Cheadle).

If you’d like to chat to 121 Home Tutors about adult tutoring in Manchester, Heaton Moor, Wilmslow, Didsbury and surrounding areas then call us on 01625 531360


Year 13 – what to do with your summer

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

If you are in Year 13 (Upper Sixth) then this is a great time for you – your A Level exams are over and you have a few weeks ahead where you can relax before your exam results come in and you get a job or go off to university.  Because it’s been such a hectic few months you might not have thought about what you’ll do over the summer (and we know there are a fair few of you who’d like to do absolutely nothing!). But by now you may have had a few weeks to chill out and be looking around for something to do.

This might be your last chance, at least for a while, to fill your time with some interesting and career enhancing activities. Before you know it you’ll be in the world of work or finding your way at university. Here are just a few suggestions to fill your time over the next few weeks.

1.      Work experience

If there’s one thing that employers say time and time again about choosing someone to work for them it’s that they want someone with experience. You can have all the qualifications in the world but even a few weeks experience in your chosen sector could make the difference between landing your dream job or walking away disappointed. It’s also a great chance to try out different jobs and turn your hand to a variety of jobs before you pick your ‘career’. Lots of companies would love to have someone enthusiastic and hardworking over the summer to help them out. It’s fairly straightforward to get some work experience – just think about the kind of companies you want to work for – and then drop them an email, call them or go and see them in person. It’s a good idea to get a basic CV together and be ready to answer questions about why you want to do work experience at that company. If you don’t have a career or specific company in mind then doing any kind of work will give you valuable skills in timekeeping, responsibility and self-motivation.

2.      Take a day trip to Uni

If you are going to Uni in September then you’ve probably already visited your University – but how long did you spend there? A few hours? How about jumping on a train with a few mates and really starting to get to know the place you’ll spend the next 3 or so years. It can give you a real head start before your course begins and give you vital information like where the supermarkets are!

3.      Volunteer

At 121 Home Tutors we happen to think volunteering is one of the most rewarding and enriching things you can do with your time. There are hundreds of volunteering opportunities in the UK and abroad – and there’s something to suit everyone – from building schools in Africa, to fundraising to helping out at events. You can find information here

4.      Learn a new skill

Chances are you’ve been so busy the last few months you’ve had no time to just concentrate on you and what you like. When was the last time you learnt something that you really enjoyed? The holidays are the perfect time to join a club or class and develop or polish up a skill – from Zumba to learning French – check out Plings for classes, events and things to do.  There’s always the option to work one to one with a specialised tutor.

5.      Travel

If you’ve done A Levels languages what will you do with them now? How about taking those skills and enjoying everything that another country has to offer? Check out options like Interail and turn your holiday into an adventure.

If you’d like to know more about learning a new skill over the summer then contact us at 121 Home Tutors – we offer one to one language tuition including French and Spanish across Manchester and  Cheshire.

Exams are over (for now!)

Thursday, July 14th, 2011

The exam season is finally over and it’s time for teens to take a well-earned rest. But then they have six (or more) long weeks stretching ahead of them and hours and hours of time to while away. The summer holidays are a great opportunity to catch up and/or work on areas where students might have struggled this academic year.

This is the perfect time for Year 9 students who are going into their GCSE years to work on subjects they’ve struggled with. If your child is in Year 9 and will start working towards their iGCSE (often in independent schools and perceived as harder than a traditional GCSE)  then summer tutoring can help them get a headstart.

And if your child is in Year 10 or 12 then they’ll be on their way to final GCSE and A Level exams in the next year – this is the summer that could make all the difference to how they enter one of the most important years of their life.  Summer catch ups and study aren’t just for those who’ve struggled a bit, it’s a chance for every student to get ahead or just make sure their brain doesn’t turn to mush in the space of six weeks.

It might seem daft to say that students can fall behind in such a short space of time – but in a month and a half (even longer for independent and boarding schools) the skills they’ve built up during the year can quickly disappear. It means they often start the year struggling to find their feet.  When we talk to parents and students we find the areas they most struggle with at the start of the year (after the long summer break) are modern languages (so French, Spanish etc), Maths and Science. It’s usually because these are the trickiest subjects for most students and all of these subjects combine using complex skills with learning a lot of knowledge. So for example they have to develop skills such as writing up experiments or solving equations alongside taking in knowledge of names of compounds or lists of vocabulary and noun formations. So how can we help them stay on top without destroying all the fun of the summer holidays?

The secret is to find fun ways of engaging the brain without making it feel like learning.

  • If your child is learning a language, maybe French or Spanish, then visit the country for a trip or holiday. Encourage them to use the language but also know that just being around it will utlise their skills (such as reading and comprehension).
  • Visit museums and exhibitions – places like MOSI (The Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester) aren’t just for young children. There’s stuff for children of all ages (and even better it will entertain them for a whole day).
  • Keep them reading – encourage them to read their favourite books, invest in some new reading material and if they are willing get them to cast an eye over their textbooks.
  • Use the resources you have for educational purposes – yes they are probably already permanently glued to the television or internet, so encourage them to find programmes relevant to their study (Braniac for Science for example).
  • Think about using a private tutor – tutors don’t have to teach in a classroom style and an hour or two a week could be just what your child needs to go into the next year brimming with confidence.

If you live in Greater Manchester Cheshire and you’d like to find out more about how summer holiday tutoring can help your child –in tricky subjects like Maths, Science and modern languages –get in touch with 121 Home Tutors.

Want to speak the lingo when you are abroad?

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

We’ve all been there, on holiday, in a restaurant and you’d really like to order something from the menu and not sound like a complete fool. So you attempt the schoolgirl French that you remember and then die of embarrassment as the waiter gives you a patronising look and repeats what you tried to say correctly (and often in much better English than your French!).  And it’s ok if your pride takes a bit of a battering for a couple of days a year but what if you’ve invested in a holiday home abroad or fancy the idea of taking a working holiday in France or Spain. What if your escape pad or planned job is in an area where there is very little English spoken?

No doubt you’ll have heard horror stories of people buying holiday homes in France or Spain only to find out they hadn’t completed some vital piece of paperwork. This usually comes down to a communication issue because we don’t get a good enough grasp of the language before we trot off on the plane.

Or you could be in the enviable position of being offered a promotion at work, a move to a European office such as Barcelona or Paris is on the cards. It’s great because most people speak English but you’d be in a much stronger position if you spoke the language and were able to handle the very simple day to day activities such as going to the supermarket or doctors without having to resort to using a dictionary or translator.

There are many different ways you can learn a language – evening classes, online courses and tapes. We often get asked at 121 Home Tutors to work with people on their French, German or Spanish language skills because they value the one on one help we can provide. And private language tutoring is one way to learn fairly intensively and with continual encouragement to keep working at it (rather than letting the language tapes languish at the back of a cupboard).  We’re also able to tailor a very specific private tutoring language course rather than teaching you things that maybe aren’t so relevant. If you need business French then we can focus on what you’ll need to work best in the office (so you’ll need to know the word for a photocopier or words specific to your job). If you’re buying a property in say Germany or Spain we can focus on the language relating to homes and any particular legal language you may need. The other great thing is that many of our tutors have spent time in the country you’ll be discussing and can give you little hints and tips.

If you’d like to know more about learning a language such as French, Spanish or German and you live in Manchester or Cheshire (we cover areas including Bramhall, Hale, Wilmslow, Didsbury and Alderley Edge) then contact 121 Home Tutors.

What’s the point of learning a language?

Friday, May 20th, 2011

In the last few years the number of children learning foreign languages has dropped dramatically. In September 2004, they were removed from the compulsory curriculum for 14 and 15 year olds and since then the numbers taking GCSE languages, such as French and German has declined year on year. In GCSE French there has been a 50% drop in numbers over the last ten years and last year for the first time it fell out of the top ten most popular GCSE subjects.

As well as languages no longer being compulsory there is generally held belief that languages are harder. This could be for a number of reasons.  A study a few years ago showed that marking in languages is often tougher than for, say, GCSE Drama. There was also a perception that language teaching in general was less dynamic.  And if children aren’t engaged in the classroom then they are less likely to sign up for a subject at GCSE level. Schools have been accused of pushing their students down the ‘softer’ exam route to boost their rankings.  As languages were always seen as hard but can now be avoided (unlike compulsory ‘hard’ subjects such as Maths and Science) then there is less incentive for schools to encourage children to take the subjects. The recent coalition Government is trying to crackdown on soft GCSEs introduced by Labour.

But what’s the impact of the drop in uptake of foreign languages? One thing we’re maybe not very good at making clear to children is how important an additional language can be personally but also on a wider level. If we don’t possess the skills to operate on an international level then how do we trade with other countries? Our employers should be making it clear to children, through their relationships with schools, that they need language skills to get jobs and grow companies (furthering their own careers).  We have so many international companies with a presence in the UK that it should be clear how important a further language could be.

Companies need to offer incentives for people who speak foreign languages and make it clear in job adverts that this skill is highly prized. If employers don’t make it clear that these skills are valued then there’s no real reason for children to keep learning a language.  If it’s already seen as a hard subject and then there is no end value to pursuing it then it’s easy to see why children aren’t rushing to sign up. We need to stop feeding the idea that ‘every other country speaks English’ and instead look for ways to communicate in their native tongue.

One way to get children interested in languages is to start young – at 121 Home Tutors we work with children at primary level – in interesting and unusual ways to get them really excited about languages. Once they’ve caught onto the idea that languages can be as interesting as their other subjects then they are more likely to want to keep up with their study at a higher level. And because they love it they then want to know how they could use it in their life or career once they leave school. The answer doesn’t seem to be in making languages compulsory again but rather helping children love languages.

If you’d like some help with primary or GCSE French, German or Spanish language (or Business Studies) tutoring in Manchester and Cheshire (we cover the Heatons, Sale, Wilmslow and Didsbury plus other areas) contact 121 Home Tutors today.