Laura is one of my good friends in Madrid and fellow teaching assistant at my placement school. This is her second year teaching in Spain, her first year was spent in Galicia. Here is what she thinks about living and teaching in Spain!
1. Where are you from?
2. What made you decide to be an Auxiliar de Conversación?
I met some auxiliares on the Camino de Santiago a few years back, decided it would be a great way to live in Spain.
3. Is this your first time in Spain?
No, I have visited (Tarifa) and studied abroad (Córdoba) here.
4. Which program hired you?
Auxiliares de Conversación (Ministerio)
5. What region were you placed in?
Last year I was in Galicia and this year I requested Madrid.
6. Why did you choose Madrid?
When I was studying in Córdoba, I visited Madrid on a long weekend and immediately fell in love with the city’s busy energy. It is really an exciting place to be for someone my age.
7. What grades do you teach?
3rd and 5th
8. Have you worked with children in education in the past?
My mother is an elementary teacher. I grew up around the culture, her planning lessons, talking with other teachers about strategies/the system. In college I volunteered in a 3rd grade and just found I was naturally good at the job.
9. What has surprised you the most about the Spanish education system?
The system is very different from the States, but it really is hard to generalize when my opinions/knowledge are based on my little experiences. This year I was surprised most with discipline. I think in the States the teachers can’t get away with yelling at the kids, the parents would flip out.
10. What is your favorite part of the job?
Creating lesson plans. It’s fun to put yourself in a childlike mindset and come up with activities that would in some way inspire them. When they work in the classroom it’s really rewarding.
11. What is your least favorite part of the job?
Having to come in for two weeks after the kids have left.
12. What’s your favorite word or phrase your students use?
13. Are you going to renew your position for another year?
Yes, that’s the plan.
14. What’s your favorite part of living in Spain?
Health care–what! My friend got really sick this year and spent 10 days in the hospital. I can’t imagine those bills in the US.
15. What advice would you give a prospective auxiliar?
Gracias, Laura! 🙂
If you are a volunteer, language assistant, or English teacher abroad and would like to participate in an interview, let me know via the contact tab!
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