Uncommon Sense About Learning English

Curriculum

We wrote our curriculum from scratch after years of frustration with ineffective books and methods. Some methods specialize in wasting time.

We approached it with a fresh perspective: if our goal was to make you a nearly native speaker and we if viewed every lesson as a precious opportunity to improve your English, what should we do in class?

Unlike any other competitor in the market, we actually developed our curriculum while running a 12-year-long experiment on non-native speakers in China. We took them from being unable to speak a word of English to being able to debate and write persuasive essays.

We applied decades of teaching experience and the best practices from the education field to make the most effective curriculum on the market. We are not beholding to any publisher or provider on the market. We simply use the best tools we can find. And if we can’t find the tool we want, we make it.

It all starts with our early years material, for students who don’t truly speak English yet. It’s built around a day in the life of two Chinese kids. Everything that appears in the book is extremely high frequency and life-oriented.

Using an abundance of original music and physical props, the teacher engages the student in short interactions that model the students’ daily lives. It is true low-pressure learning.

As the students’ gain confidence and proficiency in their very practical spoken English, we gradually introduce letters and phonics.

Then, we gradually start exposing them to native-speaker level texts, all while building their ability to answer open-ended questions and think.

After this, we start to teach the students critical thinking. Critical thinking is utterly essential to our students’ success in overseas high schools and universities.

However, it is largely untaught in Chinese schools. We start by discussing the differences between facts and opinions, and end by analyzing and identifying logical fallacies (like the Ad Hominem, or the Slippery Slope).

And from there on out, the sky is the limit. Debate, persuasive essays, expositions, improvised speeches. We’ve gathered a series of the most compelling topics and level-appropriate sample essays from native speakers to create an unmatched training program to put them on track to thrive in Western high schools and universities.