While living in Mexico for 3 years, I was both Academic Coordinator and teacher for a private English academy known as "Harmon Hall". All of my students were between the ages of 17-70. When I moved to Atlacomulco, Mexico, I didn't speak Spanish very well, so I completely understand the frustration of learning a new language. I quickly learned that our two languages have a LOT of words in common (excellent, education, exam, new, vacation, music...to name a few). This made it easier to "fill in the blanks" speaking with students. Classes are more productive if students can relate to the subject matter. I have a working knowledge of Mexican history/culture (mostly, of the rural cultures in the middle part of the country). I can use this knowledge to create dialogue that is meaningful to the student. Basically, I tell a short story; solicit opinions/conversation; present new vocabulary/grammar; offer mini quizzes so that students can practice with the new information; try to give reading, writing, listening & speaking opportunities in each class. Students are always given homework (using both the new information as well as "recycling" old information...so they don't forget). Ideally, the "classroom" would have 2+ students (so that students have more than 1 person to practice with). NO Spanish will be allowed in my classroom (sounds scary, but it has always worked out).
I also went out in the community of Atlacomulco and taught "Business Spanish" to executives (who already were fluent in "conversational" Spanish, but wanted to learn more "business-type" words/phrases.
I also tutored 2 MDs who were pursuing degrees in the U.S. - and needed practice speaking to patients in English.
I am a good teacher. I am a fun teacher. I sometimes come to class in costume. I offer 100% - and expect 100% from my students.
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