lunes, 22 de julio de 2013

Spanish for Families in Bariloche: Ellen, Peter and Louie

Student stories: Ellen, Minnesota

I took group classes at La Montaña for three months while in Bariloche with my husband and four-year-old son on a family sabbatical. Because I had studied French, I could understand some Spanish, but otherwise I was starting from near zero. It didn’t take long to build up my vocabulary and learn to recognize different verb tenses, and it was exciting to be able to read and understand newspaper articles even without a dictionary. But developing a passive understanding is totally different from being able to actively use a language, and the teachers at La Montana understand this:  from my very first classes I was expected and encouraged to speak and write in Spanish. That daily practice in a supportive environment helped me develop the confidence I needed to interact with shopkeepers, the staff at my son’s preschool, and with the Argentine friends we started to make.
Being far from home while struggling to learn the local language can be isolating and lonely, and for me being part of the community at La Montaña was a big help. I met interesting people from all over the world, made friends, and traded useful information on things like excursions and laundry services and apartment rentals.
I had a positive experience at La Montaña and feel like I made really good progress learning Spanish in a short period of time. As we pack our bags to fly home to the U.S. we’re already discussing how we can come back to Bariloche!
Ellen Tveit
Minnesota, U.S.A.

No hay comentarios: