I would like to tell you about “the culprits” of my “absence” in July and August: a Dutch and an English 3-week intensive courses at Leiden University. Though I have taken other language courses before at BplusC and at Leiden University, I have found these a little different. I am very happy with my improvement in both languages. My immersion and hours of study have been worthwhile!
In general, the language courses at Leiden University have an academic focus, giving more importance to grammar and vocabulary and with hard homework.
Starting with the Dutch, I had 4-hour daily lessons for 3 weeks to go from level 0 to A1 (Common European Framework). Although it is a beginner´s level course, it is quite difficult to follow if you have not taken any course before (unless you speak German). In this case, I think it is better to take a twice-per-week-lesson course or any other less intensive modality.
Leiden University uses the Delftse methode. I think the books are very well structured and it is a good method, focussed on learning by listening and reading. Whether you like it or not depends on how you like to learn a language.
In my case, I see that I have reached a good basic level and now I have the homework of reviewing the texts to learn better the vocabulary (3 weeks are too short to assimilate all the new words!) and to use these sentences in all possible opportunities :D.
Regarding the English summer course, I had 3-hour lessons every day for 3 weeks to go from level B2 to C1+. We worked hard on vocabulary, grammar and presentations in English!
I really enjoyed the presentations that we did as class-exercises. I love working in teams and I learnt a lot from my classmates. We had really interesting and nice presentations and it was an excellent opportunity to improve my public speaking skills and to interact more with other students.
Both courses were a very enriching experience and I have met very nice people from all over the world. Warm weather and language learning are a good combination in Holland during the summer! 😀