The mission of Leonardo English is to help curious people improve their English in a more interesting way.
In December 2019 we started with a podcast, which has now been downloaded over half a million times by curious people from almost every country in the world.
Now we are going a step further, and launching The Academy
It is a hands-on, fully-remote course for curious English learners that combines real-life English, weekly activities, personalised feedback and coaching from teachers, and a supportive community to motivate you to feel smarter, more independent, and more confident in English.
It will launch on September 27th 2021, and continue for 10 weeks.
Places are extremely limited, and we will accept only 30 students.
Update: The Academy 2021 has now started, and we are not accepting any more students.
If you would like to join the waitlist for 2022, you can do so below:
You probably have some questions about The Academy.
You can find answers to some of the most common questions below, and I also just made a video that explains more:
How is this different from other English courses?
Where do we start? We are completely reimagining how adult English education should be done.
The philosophy of this course is that you learn by "doing", not by "attending".
- No sitting around in class
- No pre-recorded videos
- No grammar lessons
- No textbooks
Instead, you will:
- Focus on weekly assignments: learn by doing, not by just attending.
- We learn from films, newspapers, books, TV, podcasts, you name it - real English content.
- Focus on sharing feedback and ideas (i.e. helping others with resources, corrections, etc.)
- Be part of a small, elite group, so that you get as much attention as you need
What will I learn?
In this 10-week course (see curriculum), you will go on a journey through English language culture with a small group of other, dedicated learners.
Through examining famous works in English (articles, speeches, films, discussions), we will engage with a wide range of topics and thought-provoking questions.
At the end of the 10-week period you will have the skills and confidence to continue this exploration of English on your own, and will have made amazing connections with other curious minds from all over the world.
Our ultimate goal is for you to start feeling as comfortable in English as you do in your mother tongue.
How will the course be structured?
Each of the 10 weeks will have a different theme, where we work on an interesting problem, using real English content.
For example, one theme will be "great speeches in English".
During this week, we will analyse some of the most important speeches to be made in English, by people such as Martin Luther King, Michelle Obama, and Winston Churchill.
The "assignment" at the end may be to choose to either rewrite the speech using slightly different sentences, or to record yourself speaking part of it.
Because all assignments will be "public" (with other students), we will all learn from each other, and it will be a true "community" experience.
You can view the full curriculum here.
How does the feedback work?
Every week there will be an assignment which requires you to produce a thoughtful assignment in English. This may be in writing or audio.
When it is completed, you will receive detailed personalised feedback from a native-level English teacher.
All of the feedback is "public" to other participants, so you will learn not only from your mistakes, but from everyone else in the course.
How much access do I get to Alastair?
Alastair will be involved on a daily basis in the community, supporting you and guiding you through the course. You will also have 2 x 45 minute coaching sessions with him during the 10-week course.
How much time can I expect to spend on the course?
You should aim to spend an absolute minimum of 2 hours per week.
Realistically, we would suggest allocating 5 hours per week, but the more time you put into it, the more value you will get out of it.
Can I take the course in my own time?
You do not have to "attend" lectures, and you can do the assignments at any time you want during that week.
But, because we are going through the course as a group, you need to complete each assignment within 7 days.
I'm not sure my English is good enough to take this course
If you can understand this page, you can understand 70%+ of an English Learning for Curious Minds episode, your English is good enough.
I have a full-time job. Can I still take this course?
Yes. Indeed, it is designed for people with full-time jobs and other commitments, e.g. children.
I'm already taking an English course - can I take this at the same time?
Of course. This will be a great complement to another course you are taking.
I'm not in Europe - I'm in a very different timezone (Japan / Brazil). Can I still take this course?
Yes, certainly. The focus of the course is on assignments (homework), and there is no class to attend.
Indeed, the course was designed with people like you in mind.
How much does it cost?
The cost of the course for 2021 is €450 for Leonardo English members, €550 for non-members.
Will my company pay for me to do this?
Companies often have a learning and development budget, and will pay for employees to take language courses like this.
You can ask your employer - many will be happy to invest in this course for you.
Do you have a money back guarantee?
Yes. We want this investment to be 100% risk-free. If you complete all of the assignments, and still don’t find the course valuable, we’ll happily refund your payment in full (including the deposit) within 30 days of the start of the course.
This sounds amazing and I want to take part. How can I reserve my place?
The course for 2021 has already started, and we are no longer accepting students.
You can join the waiting list for 2022 below
I have another question
You can email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to help.