UK culture is one of the most exciting and richly vibrant in the world, with the country’s long history and strong sense of identity. Many students come to Britain with prior knowledge about the events which have happened here and with an excellent understanding of important historical occasions that have taken place.
There are many historical sites which are well worth a visit for students, alongside other, different destinations which can help to maximise the learning of the English language.
First of all, local libraries are an excellent place to start and can be a source of great information. It goes without saying that a visit to the library can not only provide excellent reading stimulus, but it can also be a hub of information about local events and support groups for overseas students.
Libraries also provide access to a range of local and national newspapers and magazines, which can be an excellent way to pick up not only the language but also to keep abreast of current affairs and trends. Libraries are also an ideal place to pick up a guide book or two about days out and events which can help to maximise learning even further.
Museums and art galleries are an obvious choice for overseas students to learn more about the long history of Britain and current trends, events and traditions. Many British museums are free of charge, although some do have entrance fees for more popular exhibitions.
Some of the best days out can be had at the Science Museums, which have lots of hands-on activities and exhibitions which are ideal for kinetic learners. They also feature information on local historical figures and local trades, which can help to build up a more rounded knowledge of a particular area.
Likewise, specific museums which are based on television, media, transport and industry can provide excellent stimuli for local and national history learning.
Another top destination for overseas students must be a visit to a football ground. Most grounds feature organised tours which can be an excellent way to become immersed in British tradition and history, whilst also developing an understanding of an important British pastime. As well as learning more about the history of the game, visitors can gain further insight into special events and community work which is often linked to football teams within towns and cities in Britain.
There are also the major tourist attractions, which are essential for gaining knowledge and understanding about the UK and for developing key language skills. The National Heritage holds lots of information on the many castles, Roman ruins and important historical sites which are situated throughout the country.
Places such as the Roman amphitheatre in Chester, Warwick Castle and Stonehenge are steeped in history and important places for any visitor to the UK. Likewise, the National Trust can provide information on local nature walks and trails which can be an ideal way to get out of the busy city and sample a taste of the British countryside.
Some towns and cities often feature walking tours, which can be an excellent way to maximise learning in many ways. Often, a tour guide will be open to answering questions from visitors and can provide a more personal view on certain sites and historical events. This can be an ideal way to develop key conversation skills and to learn more about British culture.
Alongside historical tours, there are also ghost walking tours and literary tours, which can take visitors to the birthplaces of important British writers. Some tours are also linked to theatre trips, which can be booked all at once, for those who prefer an organised package.
Sporting visits are also a good way to integrate into local communities; outdoor learning centers which feature climbing, abseiling and sailing, for example, are useful in many ways. Students are not only given the chance to practice language skills but they are also required to work as a team. Visits such as these often help to develop friendships and can help to build confidence and boost self esteem in more ways than one.
Britain is a country which is full of history, culture and traditions. Outside of the cities and towns, the country side and coastal towns offer just as much to visitors and there is never a shortage of activities to take part in or places to visit.
Any kind of outing can provide important opportunities to develop language skills and advance confidence in most students- whether it is a trip to the local cinema or pier, or an outing to Skipton Castle. Each and every outing is a chance to refine learning and each new experience is just as important as the last.