INS Manuel de Montsuar’s Writing and Listening Lab

‘Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.’

–Benjamin Franklin

Being proficient in a foreign language implies mastering 4 key skills which are: written and oral communication as well as written and oral comprehension. We would like to focus on the written communication and the oral comprehension today. Eventhough nowadays most of our students get lots of English input from the social media, videogames and the film industry, they still find it hard to overcome some of the existing problems when completing a listening task properly. Our English language teenage learners basically claim they “do not understand a single thing” (which is by all means untrue), they also complain that the speakers accents are really tough to grasp or that speakers talk too fast. Consequently, some of them give up and many end up turning their back on listening comprehension and thus making no effort at all. The same goes for the written interaction. Some students are used to apply digital translators to accomplish their tasks. This is undeniably an invalid and mistaken strategy as long as our students aim is to become succesfully autonomous at expressing their thoughts in written English.

Since one of the goals of our foreign languages department is to polish up these difficulties and to improve them too, we have established different methodologies so as to help them out:

1- We have designed written and listening guidelines for our students to use autonomously and at their own pace both in class and at home. You can download them below.

2- The listening and written tasks will be carried out in class, not at home, whenever it is possible, so as to foster their autonomy and to hamper them from using any external help. We also intend to accustom them to use the English they know and avoid dictionaries as far as possible. It is desirable that they start writing simple sentences rather than copycat ellaborated and difficult ones. When one creates their own texts, these remain in the brain longer because they come straight from one’s creative soul and life-learning experience. Besides, the teacher will guide them so that they are eventually used to naturally apply the adequate techniques to boost their own listening and writing skills.

3- We will enhance and strengthen these skills by using authentic material in class, like news programmes, real resources adapted to their age like BBC teens and a bunch of written games in class basically devoted to promote their creativity and their English command.

We are convinced that our Monstuar’s students will surely benefit from all these learning strategies and procedures intended to build up their written communication and oral comprehension as well as to help them gain self-confidence and autonomy.

Tips to Beat Exams Successfully

1st of batxillerat students doing an English Test

The end of the 1st term is close which roughly means that students are about to face a couple of exhausting weeks before Christmas. Undeniably, that’s a situation we’ve all ever come to experience and it can get really stressing and hectic though, unless you are the organised and efficient type of student…

Our students here at INS Manuel de Montsuar are getting really anxious and worried about exams. Some of them are pushing the panic button! There’s no time to lose! Let’s get down to it before it gets too late…

First of all, remember to do a 10-minute mindfulness guided session before you start cracking the books and burning midnight oil. You will feel that your agitation vanishes and you feel more focused.

Here are some tips that will surely help you with your exams and remember:

Never leave for tomorrow, what can be done today!

The Happiest Day of My Life

3 ESO, 4 ESO, 4 ESO (2nd language) and 1 BAT (2nd language)

Take a minute to sit and think about the happiest day of your life.

Watch these two videos. In the first one people from different ages and ethnic groups talk about their best day ever. The second is a 12 minutes-long TED talk about a study on happiness.



1- Record yourself talking about the best day of your life. Talk for 2 minutes (minimum.) *Adapted students: talk for 1 minute only. You may need to write a script before actually recording yourself, but remember NOT TO READ! Answer the following questions about that day:

  1. Who were you with?
  2. Where were you?
  3. When was it?
  4. What happened?
  5. Why was it special?
  6. How did you feel? Which emotions can you remember?
  7. What future event are you willing to experience?

2 – Post a picture of that day (if you have one!)

3- You can include music (not loud!) or related images.


by Pau Prim Ribes, 10 years old

STANDARD: Record yourself and upload your recording in youtube and post the link here. Remember not to read and to talk for at least 2 minutes describing your daily life these days at home: What has changed? What are you doing to keep yourself busy or amused?.


BASIC: Record yourself and upload your recording in youtube and post the link here. Remember not to read and to talk for at least 1 minute describing your daily life these days at home: What has changed? What are you doing to keep yourself busy or amused?.