After having so many trial and error situations while attempting to communicate with people working in shops, restaurants, grocery stores, Spanish friends and mi madre española, I began to feel a strong sense of determination to learn Spanish because there is so much more weight placed on the importance of everything you are learning in class since you will need it everywhere you go.
I am enrolled in the Spanish Language & Culture program at the University of Alicante and am taking one three hour class everyday of the week. I am happy about the light course load that I have here because it gives me a lot of free time to experience Spain outside of the classroom.
Every month we move up into a higher level of Spanish as long as you pass the class from the previous month. Most of the time you get to stay with the people from your previous class and you will all continue moving up together so you get to know everybody pretty well. In my class there have been people from Russia, Japan, Korea, Germany, and other students from the U.S. so we get to meet people from all over the world as well!
So far I have had two different professoras and they both have been great. My first teacher, Laura, had studied in Boston and my teacher this month, Marina, is half English and so she also knows English as well. In class we do a lot of exercises on worksheets and in the books, but we also have a lot of verbal exercises. In my classes in the U.S. I didn't have a lot of opportunities to talk in Spanish, but here we have no choice because it is the only common language that everyone in the class knows so even during our breaks, we are all still speaking in Spanish.
The campus here is also quite beautiful - here are some pictures:
Overall I am quite happy with school here and love the fact that everything that we are learning can be directly utilized even after we leave the classroom. I also love that there are so many people from other countries that we are studying with because it is such an awesome way to not only learn about the Spanish culture, but also the cultures of Russia, Japan, Germany, and Korea also.
School puts the study in study abroad so break out your flash cards and get ready to learn in a way you never have before!!
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