19 February 2018

Sussex Downs International College

Top Teacher

Top Teacher

Sussex Downs International College is the number one state college for its English language programmes for overseas students, and one of its teachers has been singled out for praise.

Last year Sussex Downs College International team enrolled just over 1,000 overseas students onto its award-winning English language courses. The College has been the number one state college for over seven years. One of their senior EFL teachers, Stephanie Hirschman has recently been singled out for praise.

Stephanie has a varied role in the team leading the Lewes campus summer programmes, as well as part time and one to one courses. But she is also one of the senior English language teachers in their outstanding international team and is a frequent contributor to team development activities. Last year she had a feature article published in English Teaching Professional advocating the use of a variety of authentic native-speaker games in the EFL classroom to support the acquisition of language. Recently she has won the monthly lesson share competition on the popular Macmillan One Stop English teaching/resource website. Stephanie’s lesson looked at collocations –words that naturally sit together and help to make an English language learner sound more natural and fluent: eg have a party, do an experiment, take your time, make an excuse. The lesson includes an innovative colouring activity to consolidate mastery of the language point.

“I have always been interested in exploring new ideas in my teaching and am delighted to be able to share this resource more widely ”, said Stephanie, “Later this year I hope to take the next step and start working on a publishing proposal for an English language course book.”

“I am lucky to have such a strong teaching team in the International College,” said International Director and course book writer for MacMillan, Mark Allen, “each year they get fantastic student feedback and outstanding exam results. It is wonderful to see Stephanie get recognition at an international level for her innovative work and I wish her every success in her course book plans –something I know is a demanding undertaking!”