New program provides the foundation to successfully study at boarding schools in Canada
In September 2023, Pickering College welcomed its first cohort into its new ESL Boarding Academy. The full-year credited program offers students in Grade 9 and 10 a thoughtfully designed curriculum that accelerates language acquisition, enables students to reach challenging academic goals, and provides the foundation to successfully study at boarding schools in Canada.
Students enrolled in the Boarding Academy complete a full year of required Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) credits at the highest academic level, with small class sizes and a low student-teacher ratio.
Over the course of the year, students gain experience in Canadian learning styles and assessment expectations as they work through a rigorous and varied program. All academic credits are designed with ESL learners in mind and cover required content as well as teach English through conversation, written word and reading.
Learning skills such as independent work, collaboration, self-regulation, initiative, organization and responsibility are explicitly taught and reinforced. The enhanced ESL curriculum provides the opportunity to practice skills in public speaking, groupwork, research processes and writing styles, and all content is adapted to include Canadian topics, a range of Canadian teaching styles, and issues of interest. Class time is focused on the technical skills needed in writing and speaking English, as well as preparing for both the Duolingo and TOEFL Junior tests.
In addition, ESL Boarding Academy students take part in Pickering College’s trailblazing Global Leadership Program through community engagement projects and are eligible for a Global Leadership Certificate.
The ESL curriculum is further enriched with visits to nearby historic Newmarket, the Lake Simcoe Watershed, and Pickering College’s own Blue & Silver Farm. Day trips to the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Metropolitan Zoo and McMichael Art Gallery provide opportunities for students to immerse themselves in Canadian arts, history and culture.
After school, the ESL Boarding Academy joins Pickering College’s student body to participate in a robust co-curricular program that includes competitive teams, recreational athletics and special interest clubs. On evenings and weekends, Pickering College’s well-established and structured boarding program provides supervised self-guided study time and activities such as family dinners, games and excursions. Students also have the opportunity to visit Canadian universities to learn about post-secondary options.
Parents receive a midterm and final report on student progress each semester, and ESL Boarding Academy students interested in enrolling in Pickering College’s core academic program are offered early assessment for admission.
To learn more about Pickering College’s ESL Boarding Academy visit us online