Teaching in Spain

During my study abroad experience in the fall of 2008, I had the opportunity to take part in a Teaching English as a Foreign Language course (Test of English as a Foreign Language curriculum [TOEFL]).  During this experience, I was asked to take an education class which taught me some of the basics about learning any language.  We learned methods for teaching students solely in the target language, such as the importance of body language, and how to implement these methods effectively in the classroom.  For my case study I elected to do a final project that focused on a survey of students whose second language was English.  After polling around 20 students with primary languages such as Spanish, German, French, Swedish, and Italian, I discovered the connections between languages and found what works best in foreign language classrooms, i.e., language immersion.

To finish my experience, I had to conduct 4 one hour class sessions in a 300 level English class at la Universidad de Carlos III de Madrid using the TOEFL curriculum.  During this experience I practiced various techniques and analyzed the differences between teaching Spanish as a foreign language versus teaching English as a second language.  I found what works best in both instances, and began to employ greater usage of movements and body language in my Spanish classrooms, while trying to increase immersion in order to create a larger understanding of the Spanish language.

Image of the classroom in which I taught during my semester abroad.


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