ESL Overview

esl feature

English as a Second Language Overview

Immanuel offers English as a Second Language classes to the community as a service and as an opportunity to share Jesus Christ's love. Seven levels of classes, from beginning to advanced, are offered and staffed by trained, volunteer teachers. Our program was established by the Immanuel Missions elders in 1995 with a goal of high quality English instruction and loving service to our international community. Currently our ESL program is one of the largest programs in the region, serving approximately 375 students each semester. We value networking with the many excellent church-based ESL programs in the greater D.C. area as well as other Immanuel international and outreach ministries.

Please see Program Details and Volunteer Staff sections below for a fuller description of the Immanuel ESL program.

Program Details


Currently, we serve about 300 students in the evening classes and 75 in the morning classes. This semester, our students come from 37 different countries, speaking 20 different languages. The majority are Spanish speaking from South America. Korean speaking students are our second largest language grouping. Our community is very diverse and includes many from Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Russia, Brazil, Japan, Viet Nam, and North and Central African countries.


We offer the following levels:

  • Evening classes—Beginner, High Beginner, Low Intermediate, Communication, Reading/Writing, and Advanced
  • Morning classes - Beginner, Low Intermediate, Intermediate, and Advanced

We offer secular English teaching and ESL Bible study classes.


Beginners: Foundations
High Beginners: Picture Dictionary Level 1, Grammar For You Nouns & Verbs
Low Intermediate: Picture Dictionary Level 3, Grammar For You Nouns & Verbs
Communication and Pronunciation: Standout 3, Well Said
Reading and Writing: Grammar Sense 3, Passport to the World
Advanced: Pronouncing American English, Rethinking America 2

We sell picture dictionaries and other supplemental ESL books to students who are interested (we sell at a discount). We offer Bibles, Christian literature and Jesus films in the student's native language free of charge.


Students fill out a general form including emergency contact information. They are required to take a short verbal and written test to place them in the appropriate level of instruction. Each semester, registration is conducted the week before classes begin.

Special Classes and Events

From time to time, various classes are offered in understanding American culture, cooking, civics/citizenship, work related topics and pronunciation. Some of these classes are offered in the summers and others as individual classes or small group experiences. Special events and field trips are occasionally planned. These special classes and events are planned by volunteers from the Immanuel congregation to supplement the ESL teaching. All students/classes encouraged to attend any Immanuel Bible Church's special events, for example the Easter programs and Christmas concerts.

Volunteer Staff

The Immanuel ESL program utilizes approximately 70 volunteers; the majority comes from the IBC congregation and shows interest in cross-cultural ministry. It is our prayer that the ESL program can help Immanuel people become World Christians through praying for and interacting with those from other nations, faiths and customs. As the world literally comes to our doorstep, we desire to serve them in Jesus' name, to gain God's compassion for the lost, and to learn to worship God in unity with other ethnic believers. Through these cross-cultural experiences, our volunteers are trained to continue in cross-cultural ministry both locally and overseas in the years to come.

There is an incredible variety of volunteer tasks that are performed in the ESL ministry: greeting, hospitality, publicity, data entry/database management, graphic design, baking and coffee making, bookkeeping, program coordinating, teaching and assistant teaching, substituting, performing arts, acting as congregational liaisons and managing material resources. Time commitments are very flexible, ranging from 1 times per semester, to once a month duties, to once a week commitments. Training for both ESL teaching and cross-cultural outreach is available.

Classroom Staff

Each ESL class is staffed with one teacher and an assistant or helper. Teachers are only required to teach one day per week, therefore each ESL class has one teacher on Tuesdays and a different teacher on Thursdays/Fridays. The teachers act as a team, coordinating lesson progress and activities. An inexperienced ESL teacher will be paired with an experienced teacher prior to leading a semester class.

The program currently has 52 teaching staff: 25 teachers, 27 assistants. We also have several substitute teachers.

Teacher training is available both in-house and through local county and church-based training programs. Training costs are paid or supplemented by Immanuel World Missions. Prior to each semester, Immanuel hosts a 4-6 hour training session. We also encourage teachers to take the 16 hour "Conversational English" training offered by the Southern Baptists in our area or the local Adult Education's 8 hour "ESL Basics" course that is offered periodically. These classes do not have to be completed prior to teaching, but are strongly encouraged as preparation or continuing education.

Administrative Staff

ESL utilizes approximately 11 volunteers to handle the administrative aspects of the program.

  • ESL Program Director - oversees all aspects of the ESL program.
  • Coordinators (Morning, Tuesday evening and Thursday evening coordinators) - organize the teaching staff schedules and oversee administrative details.
  • Administrative assistants - aids in copying, distribution, and data collection.
  • Bookkeeper - handles all the book purchasing, sales, and registration income.
  • Database manager - handles all attendance records and rosters for the 375 students as well as all teacher rosters.
  • Graphics and publicity staff - responsible for all brochures, fliers, displays, and signage for the ESL program.
  • Testers and greeters - needed during registration times only.

Ministry/Outreach Staff

Conversation Partners - Commit to meeting at least twice a month, anywhere and anytime, with an international that is interested in improving their English and having an American friend. A great opportunity for building long term evangelistic relationships.

Sara Ortiz, ESL Program Director
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Immanuel Christian School

Located in Springfield, VA, and serving families across Fairfax County and Northern Virginia, our private Christian school offers challenging and engaging educational opportunities for students in grades K-High School. Learn more.

KStation: Our Children's Ministry

KStation is our ministry to children, birth through 6th grade. High energy and impactful. Learn More...

Contact Us

Immanuel Bible Church
6911 Braddock Road
Springfield VA 22151-3602


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Upcoming Events


Tue 2/25 6:00 am - 7:00 am


Tue 2/25 6:45 pm - 8:45 pm


Tue 2/25 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm


Wed 2/26 9:15 am - 11:45 am


Wed 2/26 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm


Thu 2/27 9:15 am - 11:45 am


Thu 2/27 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

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