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Frequently Asked Questions

FIND OUT ALL THE INFORMATION YOU MIGHT ABOUT OUT PROGRAMS. IN THIS SECTION WE WILL SHARE THE MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS BY STUDENTS (S), PARENTS (P) AND SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS (AD).

My son/daughter wants to attend a summer English camp in a different country. Why should we choose yours? (P)

There are a couple of reasons. Firstly, our focus is on improving your son/daughter’s English, not the travel or sightseeing. Your son/daughter will come back with improvement, particularly in spoken English, but more importantly, more confident in using English. Secondly, we do fun activities and learn about Canadian culture BUT we use the activities as a theme for the instruction of the 4 skill areas of Speaking, Writing, Reading and Phonics (Listening/Pronunciation/Word-attack Skills).
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Many programmes say they have English teachers but they turn out to be just college students and not real teachers. What about yours? (AD)

We get asked this a lot. All of our teachers are bona fide, Bachelor of Education degree teachers. All of our teachers are employed in school divisions in either Saskatoon or Greater Vancouver. We are more than happy to provide the necessary documentation on request.
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Many service providers say they have English classes but it turns out that these ‘classes’ are not formal instruction at all. Is yours any different? How many actual instruction hours per day do you provide? (AD)

We do have formal, in-class instruction for 4.5 hours per day on average. We keep the class sizes small (typically 15 pupils to 1 teacher) and the instructional time is as follows: 9-10 am Oral English; 10-10:15 break; 10:15-11:15 Writing; 11:15-12:15 Reading; 12:15-1:30pm lunch break; 1:30-2:30 Phonics. After 2:30….afternoon activities.
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What kind of activities will we do? (S)

We do a variety of activities to let you learn about Canadian culture to just have fun. We will play various sports that Canadians love (like baseball, etc) and things like wall climbing, water sliding, go-karting, canoeing/kayaking, glo-bowling, visiting local natural attractions, etc. Lots of fun…we promise!
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If my son/daughter gets hurt while on the trip, how do you handle that? (P&AD)

With regard to emergencies, ELO staff, and all Saskatoon and Vancouver teachers employed by ELO for the program, are experienced teachers, many of whom have been trained in first-aid and CPR to provide any necessary first-response assistance. All ELO staff, teachers and host families will be equipped with cellular phones and know how to contact emergency response authorities (ambulance, medical, fire and police). All ELO staff, teachers and host families know the most direct routes to emergency medical assistance. In any emergency, an ELO staff member will accompany the student and/or your teacher with said situation to the appropriate authority.
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Many programmes say they are ‘all-inclusive’ but that is not really the case and we have to pay extra. Do you have any hidden charges? If so, what are they and how much extra should we expect to spend? (P & AD)

We make it easy. There are absolutely NO EXTRA or HIDDEN CHARGES! Your student could go with HK$5 in their pocket and if they don’t want any souvenirs or personal treats, they would come home with HK$5. Our fees cover the return international flights, all in-Canada transportation, all accommodations, all meals, instruction, all venue entries, travel insurance, Canadian Immigration Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)….EVERYTHING!
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How big are the classes? What if my English isn’t as good as the others? (S)

You don’t have to worry. We will put you in a class with others of approximately the same English level. The classes are also small, usually only 15 students so your teacher can get to know you and help you with your particular difficulties in English.
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Can you tell me about the host families? How do you choose your host families? (P & AD)

We believe that in order for the students to have the maximum learning experience, student safety and well-being must be the first priority. Our host families in both Saskatoon and Vancouver have had all the required police and social services background checks to qualify and be approved to be host families for our program. Many of our host families have been international student host families for many years.
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Do you prepare the students before they take part in your programme? (AD)

We sure do. The students must attend two orientations. At the first orientation, we do some diagnostic testing to determine at what level the student is and we share that with the school to compare to your own diagnosis. The second orientation is to get the students ready for life in a Canadian family so we share the cultural differences and important things like ‘what-to-bring and what-not-to-bring’. We also have a Parent Night where we meet the parents and share about the programme and answer any questions face-to-face. We have Cantonese speaking staff for this meeting.
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How do I contact my son/daughter if I need to? (P)

At the Parent Meeting you will be provided with all the host family information (address and telephone numbers) and all ELO staff contact phone numbers. You are able to contact the host family and/or ELO staff 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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What about internet connection or WiFi? Do the host families have this? (S &P)

All of our host families are connected to the internet and the student can join the home network. The host family will help the student to do this.
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Should my son/daughter buy a phone card or data card so we can be in contact with each other? (P)

Yes to the phone card if you want to be in contact by voice. There is internet in each host family so messaging you will not be a problem. If you are buying a phone card for international calls, it is best to buy it here in Hong Kong as it’s a bit cheaper than in Canada. Both students and parents should remember there is a time difference (behind) of 12 hours for Vancouver and 14 hours for Saskatoon. This will be shared at the Student Orientation and Parent Meeting.
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What about my son/daughter’s phone charger? Will it work in Canada? (P)

Canada’s power source is 110V and is similar to Japan and America. Students will need a power adapter that has the male side to fit the 110V wall plug while the female side should fit the Hong Kong plug. These adapters are very cheap and available throughout Hong Kong.
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