About Us

Our Mission Statement

The Center for Language & Culture opened its doors in September of 2009 with the goal of helping to promote understanding and communication between people through language instruction and cultural exchange. The CLC has no governmental or religious affiliations.

 

Our Vision of the CLC

The CLC was conceived as a space which fulfills a number of goals. It is.

A Space for Growth

The outdoor space of the CLC is full of growing things: flowers, grass, shrubs, and trees, including three

A place for growth.

emblematic date palms. Their presence is a reminder of growth. We hope the CLC can provide a space for growth: learners growing in their communicative ability in another language, teachers growing as professional educators, and all of us growing as human beings.

A Safe and Supportive Space

The CLC is also conceived of as a space that is safe and supportive, both physically and psychologically. Both the people who study here and work here should feel that they are trusted and supported. We understand from SLA theory how making mistakes is part of the language acquisition process. We also understand that we as colleagues and professionals can sometimes make mistakes both in the classroom and outside of it and we hope that just as we see students mistakes as an indispensible part of the growth process, we can see each others in the same light.

 

A Space for Exchange

Something that sets the CLC apart from nearly all other language schools in Morocco and abroad is that besides

Arabic Instructor Brahim Zoubairi seizes a teachable moment at the Medrasa ben Yousef.

Brahim Zoubairi seizes a teachable moment at the Medrasa ben Yousef.

offering English classes, it has developed a program of international exchange in which (principally) American students come to Morocco to learn about the culture and language of this country and that students in these programs are given the chance to meet, interact, and exchange ideas with our Moroccan students. For our Moroccan students, this gives them real, meaningful opportunities to use the language they are studying. For the visiting students, it gives them a chance to understand Morocco not from books but from the people themselves.

Exchange, however, is not limited to students. It is our hope that we as educators are ready to share with colleagues our professional experience, skills, and ideas.

 

An Ethical Space

We believe that both our work and general human interaction should be ethical. Professionally, this can mean things like respecting time, doing the best work we can in the classroom, and making sure CLC students respect certain limits. But in a more general sense, ethics also means what has been said concerning the Iroquois Indians of America: They see themselves as servants of the past and stewards of the future. They ask, How does the decision we make today conform to the teachings of our grandparents and to the yearnings of our grandchildren? They consider, Will this be to the benefit of the seventh generation?  Morocco, like the Iroquois, has a highly developed culture and value system that we should consider in how we teach, what we teach, and what behavior we expect from ourselves and the people who study with us.

 

Our Programs

English as a Foreign Language

The English language, spoken by 1 our of every 5 people in the world, is extremely important for Moroccans seeking academic and professional success. We are passionate about the field of English teaching, our senior teachers hold Masters Degrees in TEFL, and we offer continued training for all our teachers. English is best learned from a young age, but it’s never too late to start! Our program offers a different type of instruction for kids, juniors, and adults. We also offer specialized English classes: Business English and TOEFL preparation.

Arabic as a Foreign Language

The Arabic instruction we offer is based on communicative principles: how to get learners using the language in a productive way as soon as possible. It is offered either in the the framework of specific visiting programs, summer intensive courses, or individual, one-on-one instruction.

Educational Partnerships with Academic Institutions.

The CLC partners with international study abroad programs. In 2010-11 we provided programs of language and culture for the University of Georgia, Northeastern University, Lewis & Clark College, and Legacy International’s Arabic Language Institute. In 2011-12 the CLC was chosen to run a semester and gap year program for 17 recipients of NSLI-Y scholarships, the only such program in the Arabic-speaking world for that year. Testimonials from some past participants in these programs can be found under the Arabic menu of the home page.

 Our Approach to Language Learning

CLC Director Michael Fitzgerald and the founding team have a vision about language instruction in Marrakesh:

Language learning should be fun and effective. We want students to acquire language naturally through meaningful communication. We want staff members who are energetic and enthusiastic about language learning, who see it not only as a job but as a unique way to inspire people. We want to create a school atmosphere that is both professional and relaxed. We want a school that caters to students of all sorts: children and their parents, professionals, students young and old.

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