Good morning from Cebu. Today the weather is not so sunny. But it’s not rainy either. We often this have weather once in a while and I like it this way.  😛

Anyway, today I will be explaining about the pre-paid loading system in the Philippines. I often experience our students having problems understanding and adapting our loading pre-paid system. They sometimes ask me for assistance and I do explain them but because of language barrier, the explanation can also be confusing. I hope this post would help those who wants to understand.

First, for prepaid users we can load in two ways:


Electronic loading is done through, of course, electronic automatic transmission. How do you do this? Simply, you go to a store that sells E-LOAD. You can buy this in retail prices such as 30 pesos, 60 pesos and etc.or small portions, not  (Because our culture likes buying things in sachet not in bulk). All you have to do is pay and the seller would ask for your number, input it and send the load to your number. Done!

Confirmation Message from SMART

Confirmation Message from SMART

(Picture Above: I bought a 60 peso E-load and that is the confirmation message certifying that I already receive the load.)

After which, you also receive a notification via text message confirming your e-load purchase. Then it’s ready to use. E-Load credit is available is sari-sari stores (small stores) and in convenient stores like 7/11 and cellphone shops.  Also, some private individual are also selling this. Like my office mate before. E-load system is more popular here in Philippines because consumers can buy load in cheaper portions/amount unlike in cards.

Special Note: E-load has several promos like unlimited text for 10 pesos, unlimited call for 20 pesos and etc. There are several distinctions for e-load credits. My advice: when you buy e-load you have SPECIFY clearly what type of load you want. If you are not sure you can just say REGULAR LOAD. That means you have to pay 1 php each for each text. Unlimited load promos is only good especially if you often call or text like chatting. Yes, most of Filipinos enjoy texting each other like chatting. We even have a “textmate” friend. (hahaha…)


Card Loading is loading through the use of card. This is more familiar to foreigners than the E-load system. E-load cards are available in cellphone shops, malls and many stores as well. The card loading has limited amount to buy from and it is not retailed in cheaper form. The cheapest card cost 100 pesos while the cheapest e-load cost 10 pesos. However, if you have 100 pesos it is more convenient to buy in bulk.

All you have to do is follow the instructions stated in the card. It’s easy as 1-2-3.

As much as I want to take pictures of a card, to my own dismay, I already throw it all. 😦 Perhaps, next time I should take a photo first before I trash it.

Thanks for reading,

Miss D

FEA Mactan Branch Opens on February

FEA MACTAN to Open Soon!

On February the school-resort type accommodation of Firstwellness English Academy will open!



  • Resort Type – For students who wants to relax
  • Peaceful and Quiet – For students who wants to have serene atmosphere and concentration. Less distraction. This is ideal for student who wishes to focus on taking exams such as TOEIC.
  • No Pollution – The air in Mactan is more fresh due to less cars. If you want to breathe fresher like from the countryside, this place is for you.
  • Beautiful View of Nature  – On the side you can see a beach while hearing the splashes of the waves.  Also, you can watch the stars at night while you stay nearby the swimming p

(Hi! This me, Teacher Karissa – She will handle Mactan Branch, and Teacher Wendell – Verbena Branch assistant. Nice to meet you all!)







Study Tip: Be good student

For the past ten years of teaching career, until now it is hard to label and recognize what a good student is. Some teachers say a good student makes her home work, a good student is someone who goes to the class even if it is against her will or some say a good student is someone who participates in class. All of these can be a basis of what a good student is.

But in my opinion, especially in learning an English language, a good basis to identify a good student should be focused on the result. By result, I mean the ability to use the newly learned English language.  Result should also not be focused on the speaking alone but rather on all aspects including reading, writing and listening as well.

The common mistakes of students assume is when they solely judge their English level skills on the way they speak – only the way they speak. So, if they can’t speak, they would regard themselves poorly. While a student who speaks fast, regardless of grammatical errors, as long as the student is able to utter in English, they an EFL student naturally assumes the student possess a greater English level.  Although, speaking is the easiest way the knowledge of language is quickly available, this is not so. All skills must be considered because they go hand in hand in learning English.

If you are a Japanese or Korean learning the English language, do be frustrated if your English speaking skills is quite low but try to look into your other skills which you have a high level on and use this to support your weaker skills.


Thanks for reading,

Miss D

Study Tip: Have a Pocket Size Vocabulary Notebook

When you learn a new language, in one class alone, you will learn a lot of new words. Sometimes, it is common for students to feel overloaded.


Memorizing 5o words a day I say is pretty useless. In my teaching carrier, I have seen students mostly Korean) that has very long lists of words they try to re-write and re-write in the hope that they would naturally memorize the long lists. As a teacher, I say. It is only a waste of time. Because spend all night trying to memorize the whole fifty words all night, the next day, they end up being absent in my class. 😦 Some students who are very good in memorixing can actually memorize the word and their meaning but they fail when they can’t use the word on their own. My language teacher once said “Even if you know a certain word, but still you do not know how to use, it is the same as not knowing it. It’s actually useless.” So I agree with him. Knowing a word does not stop in understanding but also in using it.


During your stay in Cebu, you will tantamount of words here and there but do expect yourself to understand and memorize everything right away. It will only frustrate you. Even I am not that good in remembering right away. So insteadm have a vocabulary notebook. I suggest a pocket sized is ideal so you can bring it anywhere with you.  So when you learn a new word or expression while buying something at the mall, take a note of it right away. Bring this everywhere you go — malls, restaurants and etc. Promise yourself to write a few words a day. There should be a limit. Do not write all the new words that you know. You won’t have time for all of it. So let’s say, you write 3 to 5 words a day. Write these words and get their meanings. (Do not go more than 5. It might be too much and you will be tired. ) Review these words at night and try to use it the way it is used from where you learned it, but create your own sentence.


Five words a day may seem to little, a bit to less and you might worry your level is dragging. But do not panic. The key thing here is consistency not speed. Just be consistent in writing 3 to 5 words a day and after few weeks you will learn more and more, after a few years you will know more than hundred words without so much effort. So be consistent in making this simple homework.

I have seen students with long impractical list to memorize but after few days, they soon give up everything. Too much of something is bad enough. Just imagine yourself like a baby learning to walk — they start by crawling till they can run.


Thanks for reading,

Miss D




Verbena Capitol Suites – FEA Location

Verbena Capitol Suites

Firstwellness English Academy of FEA is housed at Verbena Capitol Suites specifically at Don Gil Garcia Extension, Capitol Site, Cebu City. On the map above, we can see that Verbena is situated at the heart of the city. Yes it is very convenient place to stay.


It is very near to malls — the nearest mall is Robinson Mall where it takes only for 10 minutes on foot because I walk slowly and I am short. But if you walk fast, you can reach the mall in 5 minutes. Ayala Malls takes 10 – 15 minutes by jeepney or taxi.


Two blocks away from Verbena Suites is Chong Hua Hospital. This is one of the best hospitals in Cebu which is internationally accredited. It takes 2-3 minutes by taxi. The plug down rate is 40 pesos so from Verbena to Chonghua maybe you will have to only pay 47.50 pesos. That near! Another neared hospital is Cebu Doctors Hospital which also a very good hospital (Chong Hua and Cebu Doctors are considered the best hospitals in Cebu City) is located around Verbena Area. On the map above, I squared the location with the name “HOSPITAL”. That is where Cebu Doctors Hospital is located.



There are many banks around the area. The banks include – METRO BANK, BPI BANK, BDO, LAND BANK, RCBC and PNB. So monetary transaction here is quite easy.



This place is also near Christian (Roman) Catholic Church. The nearest is Capitol Parish Church which takes about 5 minutes by taxi. You can pass this going to Ayala Mall.


Mango Square an area where bars, clubs and restaurants are located. It is one area that is so alive at night! People who wants to party, drink, dance and simply have fun must not misss this place. Luckily, the place is just a few minutes away from Verbena Capitol Suites. It takes about 5 minutes by taxi or 10 minutes on foot. It’s near Robinson Mall.


Studying in Cebu is so much fun but hat you must consider first before anything else is safety and convenience of life. For instance, when you need to buy food, shampoos, clothes — it isn’t so ideal to spend so much time on this.  You can rather spend time on something else worthwhile. Staying at FEA can help you save time geographically. Everything you need is just next door.


Thanks for reading,

Miss D






What to Prepare for an Online Class as a Student

It is wonderful to know that technology is indeed making things easier for language learners. If you are a student learning a foreign language, you do have to go far to learn the language. The new generation of students are lucky to avail of online classes. By just having a laptop and an reliable internet connection, one can start language learning.

In the Philippines, online classes are very common. Most of the online classes caters Asian students such as Japanese, Korean and Chinese. Because the timezone does not differ much, creating an agreed schedule between students and teachers are not difficult. I do have my own personal private online classes as well that is not connected to the school I am currently working. I do this after work and my students are my previous students or a referral from friends.

If you want to study online, as a student this is what you should do:

1. Have a reliable internect connection in your home. And also ask for the teacher’s connection if it is reliable or not.

2.Agree a certain time to meet it Skype with your teacher. Make sure that the schedule you choose is something you can keep for a long time.

3. Have a good quality headset and microphone equipment so voice and video quality is very important.

4. Know Skype functions. This is very important since some of the students I  know do not how to use Skype. So if there are technical errors with Skype, students can not help themselves. Teachers has to instruct and it kills the time. Before starting online class, give at least one hour to be familiar with Skype functions. Even the basic would do.

5. Make sure your enviroment is quiet during the time you are going to study. If you have brothers or sisters, make sure they will not disturb you on your study time.

6. Ask the teacher that you too should have an agreed rule on lates, absences and others. This will avoid further trouble in the future.

These are just some of the basic advice I can give to students who wants to study online. I would gladly write for more and please feel free to ask any questions. Also, if you want to study with me, you can email me directly at

Thanks for reading,

Miss D

FWEA – Academic Proficiency Graph

Now, FWEA academic system created a new visual method of the student’s English Proficiency Level which presents the perfect score of each part of the test — namely Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking — correlating it with your own score. On the left side of the graph shows the average level of your test. Below is the level description which states the the sample level of the student is Pre-Intermediate. In addition, the name of the evaluator, Miss D (me) ^^ is placed because at times, when I am not around the next in rank can do the evaluation instead of me.

The graph is given together with the final schedule of the student the next day. The student is instructed to show this to all teachers so teachers will also have an idea of their real English level before they start the lesson proper. Another copy remains at my office, (Academic Office) just in case teachers would want to refer in the future. If the student does not understad the proficiency graph and what it represents teachers can assist them in understanding the facts presented.

I hope the through this factual graph, students would be enticed to level up since visually they now have a picture of where they are in English.

Thanks for reading,

Miss D