I'm a passionate polyglot world traveler now starting a new language adventure in Berlin, Germany. I'm a trained cultural anthropologist. During my college years I took many linguistics, phonetics, diction and language courses in both Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian and German. Language and language learning is something that fascinates me and I enjoy working with!
I have lived in five different countries, and have experienced the advantages of speaking multiple languages. Besides traveling I dedicate a big chunk of my time to music, I'm also a classically trained soprano with a jazz and world music passion, and enjoy cooking international dishes, reading, biking, jogging and teaching languages.
-Sociocultural anthropology degree from the University of Minnesota.
-Worked as a Spanish tutor in Shoreline Community College in Seattle, WA for three years.
-Have worked as a private Spanish teacher and tutor for seven years in Seattle, WA and Minneapolis, MN.
-Have facilitated workshops for student exchange participants to improve their Spanish conversation skills before leaving the U.S. For this I developed games, conversation topics and handouts with vocabulary and easy grammar. They loved it!
-I have completed French, and Portuguese grammar cycles (2 years each) at the University of Minnesota, which has allowed through my own learning experience to develop fun and dynamic ways of teaching my beautiful Spanish language.
My teaching approach is focused on interaction. I focus mostly on conversation from the very beginning regardless of the student's level. I believe there is no better way to learn a language that by repetition and practice in a cultural context. From my own experience I've learned that having short grammar lessons, and quickly put them in a practical context is better that trying to structure everything and understand the grammar in detail.
Instead by interaction you begin to learn not only vocabulary and structure, but the cultural norms and values that go along with the language. It also helps avoid the common tendency to translate words and structures literally from your native language because of the fun and clear feedback you get through conversations with native speakers.
With that being said, I am also a grammar geek so if you are more of the rules type of person I can equally enjoy going over rules, exceptions and fun nitty-gritty grammar. I follow the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages to structure my grammar lessons, and focus on elements that my students might need or want to work more on.
I'm always looking for new fun ways to help you learn Spanish in all kinds of media. If you'd like I might even get you singing in Spanish, perhaps watching telenovelas or doing something fun you actually enjoy. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask me or try a 50% discounted trial lesson!