I am Spanish, 27yo, mathematician, and I study Greek for fun, because I love the country and its people and lived in Athens for a few months yeas ago. I did the summer course and I definitely recommend the Ikarian Centre: great lessons, beautiful school in the mountain, Greek beaches and local parties in small villages. The lessons: with my experience in language courses, these lessons were the best we could have. We were 4 students in the intermediate level, and a typical lesson would consist of: 1) Around 1.5h with Mihalis and Despina e.g. reading an interesting text and learning vocabulary; 2) Around 1.5h with Tonia e.g. doing some grammar in a way that you never get bored and 3) Around 1h with Maria doing games to practice and integrate in your speech what you have just studied. The lessons are 100% participation and discussion, and the fact that you change teachers and environment makes it more complete and entertaining. You get as much homework as you want (reading or listening texts, writing compositions, a bit of grammar exercises), and we typically did it in the beach bar in the afternoon. My Greek truly improved! The experience: isolate 15 very nice and interesting people in a mountain, cause if you study modern Greek your are quite probably a nice crazy person, and you get an explosion of feelings, sharing, understanding and peace (add all the hippy bullshit that you want here, it is really nice). Despina, Tonia and Maria play a key role here: they are MUCH more than teachers, for a couple of weeks they also become your friends, guides, sisters, cook&dance teachers etc. A sort of free utopic society emerges temporarily. Then Mihalis’ mum, who is around 87yo and lives nearby, would come and tell you stories of the war and correct your Greek mistakes, some sort of intense conversation class. Everyday there is some activity such as panigiri (local party), open air cinema or excursion, so you won’t get bored at all. No matter your age. The island: Ikaria is a unique place, the Red Rock in the Blue Zone. Which means that the inhabitants are extreme left, free and happy and therefore live 100 years. But you can read about this elsewhere, I’m bored of it.
It was not a good idea for me to come to Ikaria By airplane because Arethousa is so far away from the airport and I was afraid all the time in my taxidrive!I think that the taxijourney was very expencive too. I have Holiday now and the better way for me is the boat to…
By Anna Hestler January 31, 2013 Read the article in Washington Post At a mini-market on the Greek island of Ikaria, I study the labels on various items, trying to decipher their meaning. It’s been three days since I left my Greek husband back in New York and dove headfirst into a local language immersion course….