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Founded in 1986 as a non-profit language school and center for international exchange, Penobscot School is a unique community international school. Over the years, hundreds of people from the U.S. and from around the world have advanced their foreign language skills at Penobscot School and have learned more about the world in the process. You are invited to be a part of this experiment in language learning in the context of the exchange of ideas and knowledge.
Taught by trained ESL instructors
• An intensive non-stop TOTAL English language immersion all day everyday
• Useful conversational English taught by local English speakers
• A mature and relaxed learning atmosphere
• Many opportunities to practice asking questions and listening for the answers
• The friendly community environment of our small New England town
• Americans with whom you can exchange culture, conversation, and interests
• Shared meals with your fellow students and American friends
• The beautiful natural setting of the Maine coast
• Afternoon activities from hiking and swimming to lounging and shopping
• Most importantly, more confidence communicating in English Classes
In addition to the daily classes, each student meets once a week for a one-hour one-on-one tutorial with a tutor. These meetings give each student the opportunity to pursue specific subjects in greater depth. The tutorials are also intended to help the student prepare a student presentation. With the help of the tutor, each student chooses a topic for independent study and makes a 5-10 minute oral presentation at the end of the course.
Tutorials and Student Presentations
Each student meets individually with a teacher several times during the course. These meetings, called tutorials, give students the opportunity to pursue specific subjects in greater depth. With the help of the teacher, each student chooses a topic for independent study and makes an oral presentation at the end of the course.
Take the ferry to Vinalhaven! Pick wild blueberries for blueberry pie! Row to the breakwater! Hike to Maiden’s Cliff! Learn how to trap a lobster! Afternoons and weekends are times for activities!
During the immersion, we offer a combination of 6 classroom-oriented activities (required), several school organized activities (optional) and free time to pursue individual interests. Afternoons (2 pm to 5 pm daily) are arranged so that students can practice and improve English skills while enjoying beautiful Midcoast Maine. Typical activities include sailing, hiking, lake and ocean swimming, volleyball, shopping, blueberry picking, visiting local fairs, exploring Rockland and nearby towns on foot, or, for students who just want to relax, just sharing a conversation in a nearby coffee shop. Students receive free admission to the Farnsworth Art Museum and to the Owls Head Transportation Museum. Evening activities may include occasional talks, movies, concerts and exhibits around town. Students often find opportunities to hear folk and popular music, to dance, and to participate in local social gatherings. Tennis, golf, fishing, canoeing, and horseback riding are also available in or around Rockland.
All immersion students live with local families in a homestay. The homestay is an important part of the immersion program and enables the student to live and practice English 24/7 during the 3-week session! Our homestay hosts are members of our community. Like you, they are young, old, married couples with children, single people living alone, groups of people sharing housing, working people, retirees, professionals, shop owners, scientists, schoolteachers, artists and artisans. We try to match students and hosts with similar interests. Every summer, hosts generously open their homes to English immersion students because they want to meet you and because they want to support Penobscot School.
Meals and Meal Teams
Meals are always a time for conversation and are an important part of the immersion experience. Usually, students have breakfast with their hosts before coming to school each morning. After class, students and teachers prepare and share a lunch together at the school before leaving for afternoon activities. In the evening, students join meal teams to help with shopping and preparation of dinner, our principal meal. Fresh local seafood and garden vegetables are summertime favorites. We won’t promise gourmet, but we will guarantee fine traditional American cuisine! In addition, students often prepare delicious dishes from their home countries to share with their hosts, students, staff, and friends. On Wednesday nights and weekends, students have meals with their homestay hosts.
Here are what some people who used Penobscot School said about their experiences. Their average rating across all categories is /5.