Xavier's News 1.

Lots of you have been asking about Xavier, so here is a little news update about him:


Xavier will be flying to America on 1st June.
His neuro-surgery will take place on 4th June and he will stay in hospital for about 5 days.

He will start to have intensive physiotherapy every day, then on 13th June he will have orthopedic surgery on his feet.
Post operative treatment will continue on a daily basis.
The family will fly back to the UK at the end of the month.


My aunty Jean, my cousin Gavin and his wife Sharanjit send their enormous gratitude to everyone at English Connection who has helped to raise money to send him to the States for these life-changing operations.

The students at English Connection raised 1 124,00€
This came from the following events: Cake Week; Book Week; Indian Meal; English Meal & Ladies Afternoon Tea.

While I was organising these events, I naturally chatted to various relatives and personal friends about what I was doing, and between them, they donated another 1 977,00€, seperately, privately, discreetly and directly to Xavier's charity page or bank account. Some of them didn't even tell me!

Two of my friends made very considerable and generous donations. They didn't want any fanfare or fuss about it, but I think there should be a little bit of recognition for their kindness: Bernard & Graham - you are stars! Thank you both so much for your amazing generosity.

So the GRAND TOTAL that you all raised is: 3 101,00€

We can't thank you enough.

You can follow Xavier's news on his Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HelpXavierWalk

And from time to time I will give you little updates on his progress too.

English for International Journalists

I was fortunate enough to be given a copy of a new text book last week (it was published in February 2013) and it’s a great addition to my library of English teaching resources.

Here it is:

English for International Journalists

“English for International Journalists” by Mike Gandon, published by Routledge.

ISBN: 978-0-415-60970-8

This is a handy sized book if you teach English at C1 or C2 level to students who are preparing for a career in international journalism. It covers all practical aspects of journalism such as making the initial contact with a potential interviewee, the best interviewing techniques, radio broadcasting, impartial reporting, sensitive issues and writing comments, opinions and blogs.

It also explores the difficulties of phrasal verbs,tricky grammar and a style of English which I call "journalese" - that's to say the special lexical and grammatical style that you only usually find in newspapers.

The book has been written by Mike Gandon, who is a former programme editor with the BBC, so it’s full of real journalistic language as used by the BBC and various UK newspapers.

This book is for you if:

• You are a teacher of general English to Advanced or Proficiency level students. Even if you don’t teach potential journalists, there are lots of interesting observations on the English language that can be used in a general English classroom.

• You are currently studying journalism but English is not your first language and you wish to improve your understanding of idiomatic English, journalistic English and the general culture of reporting and interviewing in the English speaking world.

• You are already a working journalist and you want to improve your English writing or speaking but don't have the time to attend English lessons. You can easily dive in and out of this book and there are “test yourself” exercises throughout (with answers).

• You need a reference book just to check that your English is correct when writing in a journalistic style.

English for International Journalists is supported by online resources where you can listen to and practice correct intonation and pronunciation.


The paperback price (on Amazon) is $24 or £19.99

English for International Journalists is also available in hardback.

Team Xavier France

Xavier’s News

The sum of money required has been reached, thanks to an anonymous donation of £33,000!

Xavier will have the operation at the Saint Louis Children’s Hospital, USA on 4th June. The flight has been booked.

As there are still lots of fund raising events in the pipeline, “Help Xavier” will change its name to “Team Xavier” and the family will now continue to raise funds for other children who need the same operation.

Team Xavier France (that’s us at English Connection) will hold our final event – “Book Week” and the money raised will be passed on to another child in need.


8th - 12th APRIL

Books, Magazines, DVDs & CDs

No fixed price. Please help yourself, and make a donation.

This will be our last fundraising event.

Thank you all so much for your support.

Hello from The Basque Country

I received a polite little e-mail last week from an English teacher called Sheila.

This is what she wrote:

I'm an English teacher in the Basque Country and I read some of your posts last week. I used your blog in class, so I wanted to thank you for all that information,
I found it really helpful and so did my students.



Thank you, Sheila, for your kind words. I'm very pleased to get feedback about my blog articles.

Any other EFL students or teachers out there, who'd like to say hello? I'll happily publish any letters or photos you send me.

Send to: english.connection@orange.fr

anglais et arts plastiques

Voici un petit aperçu du stage: "English and Art"

MONDAY : Archimboldo

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DSCN2218 (640x480).jpg

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arts plastiques chez English Connection Vannes


WEDNESDAY: Kandinsky



THURSDAY: Mondrian


anglais et arts plastiques vannes

FRIDAY: Andy Warhol

warhol jersey cow.jpg

Bronwen Custance, English Connection Vannes

....... and this is the teacher!

Team GB in Vannes!

Every day this week, as I have been driving to work, I’ve noticed some vans with the words “Great Britain Cycling Team” parked outside the Hotel Escale Oceania (near the Palais des Arts roundabout) in Vannes. I decided to try and find out what they were doing in Vannes. (Yes, I know, I am very nosey!)

Team GB vehicles

In fact, it turned out to be the British under 23 cycling team, consisting of 6 cyclists, 4 personnel and 3 vehicles.

Hmmm, that’s quite an impressive (and expensive) show to put on the road, so who’s paying for it all, I wondered?

I spoke to Jack Kershaw, one of the assistants with the team, and he gave me the lowdown:


The team is funded partly by the UK tax payer, partly by the UK lottery and partly from sponsorship by Sky. The cyclists are the future stars of British cycling, and they are expected to become professional sportsmen, join top cycling teams, and (hopefully) represent Great Britain in the 2016 Olympics.

cycling team jersey

They are here in Vannes to compete in the 46th Tour de Bretagne,which is taking place from 25th April to 1st May.

tourdebretagne 2012 course

I asked Mr kershaw, how they were doing: “Unfortunately, not great”, was the answer. Four of the team have been flown home as there had been some nasty crashes caused by really terrible weather conditions. Two riders have been seriously injured and another two have minor injuries, so there are only two members left in the race.

There are two more days of racing to go and Team GB have now moved on to Quimper.

We wish the young cyclists and their Manager, Keith Lambert, good luck for the remaining circuits and hope the weather improves for them. It was great to see the British team in Vannes. Let’s hope they come back again next year!

For more information about the race go to:





to be nosey = to be curious
it turned out to be = it became evident
to give (someone) the lowdown = to give information

Cours enfants et jeunes en images

Bientôt la rentrée!

English Connection Vannes propose des cours d'anglais dès la classe de CP jusqu'au Terminale, pour aider vos enfants et ados à pratiquer et à apprendre l'anglais.

Chaque année les nouveaux élèves et leurs parents posent tout naturellement des questions concernant le déroulement de nos cours.

Les cours se déroulent de façon différente selon le niveau et l'âge des enfants, ainsi, les cours d'anglais peuvent comprendre un bon nombre de choses comme les chansons, les jeux, le bricolage, les poèsies, le lotto, le dessin, le théâtre et les jeux de rôles, tout en assimilant des notions fondamentales de grammaire et en élargissant le vocabulaire des étudiants.

Notre objectif est de permettre aux élèves de pratiquer l'anglais et de leur donner une confiance à l'oral et à l'écrit. Le but des professeurs anglophones est également de donner l'envie aux plus jeunes d'apprendre l'anglais. Nous souhaitons éveiller la curiosité linguistique et culturelle des élèves. Nous espérons que ces connaissances serviront non seulement à passer les examens scolaires mais seront également utiles par exemple lors des voyages dans les pays anglophones ou même pour le futur métier des étudiants.

Puisquent les cours sont si variés, voici un aperçu tout en images de l'année scolaire 2010/2011, pour mieux expliquer le fonctionnement de nos cours:

english connection vannes images

La classe de CP apprend une poèsie.

english connection vannes images

Les Pirates! CE1 fabrique les masques et apprend le vocabulaire et une chanson autour de la thème des pirates.

english connection vannes images

images des cours chez english connection vannes

Pour apprendre le vocabulaire associé au corps et au physique ( tête/jambe/pied/bras...) : un jeu de société. Classe de CE

arts plastiques chez english connection vannes

La classe de 5ème fabrique les "Christmas Crackers" à Noël

Noël chez english connection vannes


les cours en images chez english connection vannes

Travaux en paires pour la classe de 3ème

stage d'été en images english connection vannes

Stage d'été - niveau collège - jeux de rôles autour du thème "shopping"

cours particuliers english connection vannes

Cours particuliers - un petit tour de la ville de Vannes - pour apprendre et consolider la vocabulaire importante!

cours lycée chez english connection vannes

english connection et rock à lorient

Cours niveau lycée: Une sortie scolaire à Lorient pour l'enrégistrement d'une chanson et d'une vidéo You Tube.

goûter chez english connection vannes

Venez goûter les spécialités britanniques...

Terminale chez english connection vannes

Le groupe Terminale fête la fin de l'année scolaire avec un petit goûter anglais composé de "jelly" et d'autres spécialités étrangères.

Pssst, cette année, ces trois élèves ont également reçu leur diplôme "First Certificate in English" accordé par l'Université de Cambridge.

Venez nous rejoindre! N'hésitez pas à contacter les professeurs anglophones pour tout renseignement supplémentaire concernant les horaires des cours ou les demandes d'inscription.



Introducing EN-ROCK!!

Jocelyn, Claire, Laetitia & Flavie went from English Connection to Rock à Lorient (l'école de guitare) on Saturday with Bronwen to record "The Middle" by Jimmy Eat World.

English Connection Vannes et Rock à Lorient

The music had already been recorded at ROCK à LORIENT by Quentin and Julien.


apprendre la guitare à Lorient

Julien did the guitar solo. He's only been playing for two years.

sound engineering in Lorient France
Luke, doing the sound engineering.

We hope that the song and its accompanying video will be released on You tube for La Fête de la Musique on 21st June 2011.

Rock à Lorient

So watch this space!

enregistrement à Rock à Lorient

enrégistrement à Rock à Lorient

enrégistrement à Rock à Lorient

chanteuse à Rock à Lorient

cours lycée chez rock à Lorient

We will give you the You Tube link as soon as our song is online.

By the way, if you would like to improve your guitar technique, Rock à Lorient is offering four "Stages d'été" for guitarists who are at least 14 years old and who have a minimum of 3 years experience. They include: Stage AC/DC; Stage Guns 'n Roses; Stage "Solo" and Stage "Histoire du Rock".

For more information contact Luke : www.rock-a-lorient.fr

or 02 97 21 07 65