Conversation Café – Improve your English with Free Tuition in Newark on Trent
The Conversation Café team specialises in helping non-native speakers of English to improve their language skills. All tuition is completely FREE. So, if you live in Newark or surrounding areas and have been looking for English courses or classes, the Conversation Café may be just for you.
If you are struggling to use your English in everyday life, we can help you with all sorts of things, including:
- Writing letters
- Completing forms
- Registering with a doctor
- Writing a CV
- Writing a personal statement
- Practice job interviews
- English grammar
The team is made up entirely of volunteers, who are all active members of Newark Evangelical Church or Fernwood Community Church. There are retired teachers on the team, including an English specialist and a Maths specialist, so all students are in good hands.
We have been running since November 2016 and since then we have had students from Poland, Romania, Italy, Sicily, Martinique, Lithuania, France, Israel and Brazil. Ages range between early 20’s and 50’s. Some students have been in the UK several years, and others are new arrivals.
When and where do we meet?
The Conversation Café is open from 7:30pm – 9:00pm every Wednesday except when we break for Christmas, Easter and the August summer holidays. (At the end of the Christmas term we have a celebration when each student is welcome to bring food which is traditional for their country, so that we can all have fun trying something new and delicious!)
Each session takes place at the Pelham Street site of Newark Evangelical Church.
Some students like to arrive a little earlier than 7:30 so that they can catch up with other students and team members and share the week’s personal news. The atmosphere is very welcoming and friendly and many students find themselves making good friends. Of course, if you want to come and just study, that’s fine too.
If students are curious about the church building (it has an interesting history) or the church itself, they are more than welcome to ask for more information.
What do we do?
We start the meeting all together in a single group and a member of the team usually leads an icebreaker – although this is optional, and if students prefer to opt out of this section, they can.
At 7:45 we break into smaller groups according to the needs and abilities of the students. Group sizes can vary between 1 and 6. There are smaller groups for those who need more help and larger ones for those who want to have conversation.
At 8.30 we all join together again for FREE tea, coffee, cold drinks and biscuits. There’s usually some tasty cake to try too! If they want to, students can bring cake, using recipes from their own country.
This is a time for students from the different groups to talk together in English. Many students find this a useful time to be able to be immersed in English conversations in a non-threatening atmosphere, where they can ask for help in understanding if they need it.
Who is it for?
If English is not your first language and you need help improving your fluency, then the Conversation Café is for you. The level of English ranges from complete beginners to those who are nearly fluent but want their language ‘tidying’ up.
There is no formal curriculum and therefore no assessment apart from an initial chat which determines the individual needs of each student. We depend on the students telling us what they need and want in terms of their English language skills and we tailor our programmes around that.
All students are encouraged to speak as much English as they are able and we help with the pronunciation, which is notoriously difficult for some English words.
If anyone is interested and would like more information before attending a class, they can call Pat (team leader) on 07890224575.