Language teacher

This section includes a documentation of learning experiences as a teacher, reflections on my teaching practices and a list of courses that I have taught until present.

Teaching mobility in Iceland: frábært!

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Reykjavík, Iceland | Spænska and Sólfar | 2019

Looking for new learning opportunities, In 2019 I organized a five-day learning experience abroad with three elements: school visits with classroom observation, Spanish teaching, and a public lecture. I searched for Spanish teachers who had published innovative didactic experiences using digital tools and that is how I found Pilar Concheiro at the University of Iceland in Reykjavik. I contacted her and together with Hólmfríður Garðarsdóttir, Professor of Spanish - Latin American Literature and Cultures, we arranged my visit to Iceland. I received funds from Erasmus+ for teaching staff mobility. The academic activities I planned responded to my professional interests as a language teacher and as a teacher educator. Observing lessons and exchanging views about digital technology enhanced teaching practices with local Spanish teachers boosted my motivation and gave me the opportunity to reflect upon my teaching.

My first school visit was at the Menntaskólinn í Reykjavík, a traditional upper secondary school founded in 1056. I met a Spanish teacher who showed me the school facilities and invited me to two of her classes. The teacher conducted the lesson in the target language and used Icelandic as a resource for vocabulary and grammar explanations. After a warm-up activity the pupils were asked to work in pairs to practice asking and giving directions. As soon as some pupils were done, the teacher assigned an online activity for further practice. For those who were ready with the first assignment the change to the next activity went pretty straight forward: they opened their laptops or took their mobiles in order to work with the suggested online activities. This illustrated the use of digital tools for differentiation in the classroom. My second school visit took place at Framhaldsskólinn í Mosfellsbæ, a modern upper secondary school established in 2009. The pedagogical approach at this institution is learner-centered and project-oriented. Two Spanish teachers invited me to her classrooms, where the pupils received instructions for their next learning project. Since learner autonomy is an important value in this school, the pupils were asked to plan and work on their projects on their own. Support and feedback was offered, but it would take place in the following weeks according to the needs of each group. This less guided and less structured approach to teaching was challenging for me given my educational background.

Another element of my learning experience was a conversation class I taught at the University of Iceland. Since I would only meet my group for a single class, I contacted the students in advance to introduce myself and to invite them to do the same using Flipgrid. This was also a useful way to present the topic of the lesson while working on the first learning objective. At the same time, the video-recorded presentations gave me a better idea of my students' Spanish proficiency.

Kiel and Reykjavík | Greeting my students prior to my Iceland trip | 2019

A single class is just a quick snapshot and one might question the pedagogical value of this activity. However, this session posed new learning challenges for all of us. My students had more oral communication practice producing a short video, they were exposed to another Spanish accent and a different teaching style. In my case, this lesson required a careful coordination with my Spanish colleague and the integration of methods and digital tools to meet the language objectives of the course.

The power of being open

In my job interview at the University of Kiel the last question was: "is there anything else that you would like to tell us about yourself?"

Bauhaus University, Weimar | Spanish on the rocks | 2001

I had not prepared an answer for that question and I just said the first thing that came to my mind: "yes. I am an open book, both professionally and personally". Until that moment I had not realized that some of my most significant experiences in the classroom were a consequence of that attribute. Being open is powerful. Beside my role as a teacher, I never forget that I am interacting with human beings, and this is what makes this job so complex and rewarding. Being open means acknowledging failure, it means disclosure and it also means sharing life experiences that could be necessary to complement some point of the lesson. Being open can also mean to finish the lesson with a reflective comment about it and this is specially important when you have prospective teachers in front of you. The ability to be reflective does not only have be learned from the books or practiced as a written assignment. The students have to see it in their teachers and mentors.

Courses taught

This list shows the courses I have taught since 2001, some of them in repeated occasions. Looking back at my professional experience, I identify three distinct areas: a) my work as a freelance Spanish teacher, mainly at private language schools, Universities and the Instituto Cervantes, b) my work as Spanish teacher at the University of Bremen, where I started shifting my work towards language teacher initial education, and c) my current work at the University of Kiel, where I have combined Spanish language courses with educational projects developed for prospective Spanish teachers.

Kiel, Germany | In action | 2018

Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Germany | 10.2015 until present

  • Fonética y fonología española. 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2020; Winter 2020; Summer 2021.

  • Trainingskurs Expresión oral. CEFR B2/C1 level, undergraduate and graduate-level. Winter 2019; Summer 2020; Winter 2020; Summer 2021.

  • Redacción Oberkurs. CEFR C1 level, 2,5 credits, graduate-level. Winter 2016; Summer 2017; Winter 2017; Summer 2018; Winter 2018; Summer 2019; Winter 2019, Summer 2020; Winter 2020; Summer 2021.

  • Redacción Mittelkurs. CEFR B2 level, 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2015; Winter 2016; Summer 2019.

  • Redacción Unterkurs. CEFR B1 level, 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2016; Summer 2021.

  • Español para romanistas (Beisprache Mittelkurs). CEFR A2 level, 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2018, Summer 2020.

  • Español para romanistas (Beisprache Unterkurs). CEFR A1 level, 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2015; Winter 2017; Winter 2019.

  • ProPIC intensive course "Teachers as learners: media supported collaborative professional development in the context of second language learning and teaching". 5 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2018; Summer 2019; Winter 2019.

  • ProPIC intensive course for exchange students "International study week". 5 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2018; Summer 2019.

  • Fachdidaktisches Hauptseminar Spanisch “Los docentes de E/LE como aprendices en el aula: aprendizaje cooperativo y herramientas digitales para el desarrollo profesional”. 5 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2019.

  • Fachdidaktisches Hauptseminar Spanisch “La competencia interaccional en el aula de E/LE: las instrucciones y las explicaciones gramaticales”. 5 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2018.

  • Fachdidaktisches Hauptseminar Spanisch “El discurso del aula: las instrucciones”. 5 credits, graduate-level. Winter 2016; Winter 2017.

  • Fachdidaktisches Hauptseminar Spanisch “La competencia interaccional en el aula de E/LE”. 5 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2017.

  • Español para no romanistas (Beisprache Mittelkurs). CEFR A2 level, 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2019.

  • Español para no romanistas (Beisprache Unterkurs). CEFR A1 level, 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2018; Winter 2019.

  • Proseminar zur Kultur- und Landeswissenschaft Spanisch. 5 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2017; Winter 2018.

  • Qualifikations-Sprachkurs Spanisch. CEFR C1 level, 2,5 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2017.

  • Trainingskurs Spanisch II. CEFR B1 level, undergraduate-level. Summer 2017.

  • Traducción alemán-español (Mittelkurs). 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2015; Summer 2016.

  • Traducción alemán-español (Oberkurs). 2,5 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2016.

Universität Bremen, Germany | 10.2012 - 02.2016

  • El discurso del docente de español. CEFR C1 level, 2 credits, graduate-level. Summer 2014; Winter 2014; Winter 2015.

  • Gramática en contexto (II). CEFR B2 level, 2 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2013; Summer 2014.

  • Comunicación escrita (I). CEFR B1 level, 2 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2013; Summer 2014.

  • Comunicación escrita (II). CEFR B2 level, 2 credits, undergraduate-level. Summer 2013; Summer 2014.

  • Comunicación oral. CEFR B2 level, 2 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2012; Winter 2013.

  • Gramática en contexto (I). CEFR B1 level, 2 credits, undergraduate-level. Winter 2012; Winter 2013.

  • Técnicas de aprendizaje autónomo. CEFR B2 level, 1 credit, undergraduate-level. Winter 2012; Winter 2013.

International School of Management, Germany | 08.31.-09.11.2015

Curso intensivo de español. CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level, 80 hours.

Instituto Cervantes Hamburg, Germany | 07.2015

Curso general de español. CEFR A2 level, adult learners, 25 hours.

Instituto Cervantes (IC) Bremen, Germany | 10.2005 - 06.2012

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A1 level, adult learners, 30 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A2 level, adult learners, 30 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR B1 level, adult learners, 30 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR B2 level, adult learners, 30 hours.

  • Curso preparatorio DELE. CEFR B1 level, adult learners, 30 hours.

  • Clases privadas. CEFR B1-B2 level, adult learners.

  • Español para los negocios (en compañía). CEFR B1-B2 level, adult learners.

Gesamtschule Obervieland | 09/2005 - 07/2006 (cooperation with IC)

Curso de español para escolares. CEFR A1 level, sixth, seventh and eighth grade. 415 hours.

Jacobs University (cooperation with IC)

Curso general de español. CEFR A1 level (A1.1/A1.2), undergraduate-level, 35 hours each.

Universität Bremen (cooperation with IC)

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level, 45 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level, 45 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR B1 level, undergraduate-level, 45 hours.

  • Técnicas de comunicación y portfolio. CEFR C1 level, undergraduate-level.

Interfacultair Centrum voor Toegepaste Linguistiek. Universiteit Antwerpen, Belgium | 07.2005

Intensive course Spanish. CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level, 90 hours.

Español a la medida. Cologne, Germany | 09.2002 – 12.2004

Private lessons. CEFR A1-B2 level, adult learners.

Bauhaus Universität Weimar, Germany | 03. 2000- 08.2004

  • Intensivkurs Spanisch (Europäische Sommerakademie). CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level. Summer 2004, 100 hours.

  • Intensivkurs Spanisch (Europäische Sommerakademie). CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level. Summer 2003, 100 hours.

  • Intensivkurs Spanisch (Europäische Sommerakademie), CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level. Summer 2002, 100 hours.

  • Intensivkurs Spanisch (Europäische Sommerakademie). CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level. Summer 2001, 100 hours.

  • Intensivkurs Spanisch (Europäische Sommerakademie). CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level. Summer 2000, 100 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level, 60 hours.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level, 60 hours.

  • Curso intensivo de español. CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level, 60 hours.

  • Spanischmodule Wasser und Umwelt. Co-design of two modules of Spanish for specific purposes for engineers.

Escuela Oficial de Idiomas. Barcelona, Spain | 05.2002 (cooperation with the University of Barcelona)

Curso general de español. CEFR B1 level, adult learners, 24 hours. Internship within the Master of Spanish as a foreign Language program.

Universität Erfurt, Germany | 2000-2001

  • Lengua española y gramática II. CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level. 60 hours.

  • Curso básico de español. CEFR A1 level, undergraduate-level. 60 hours.

  • Lengua española y gramática II. CEFR A2 level, undergraduate-level. 30 hours.

  • Curso preparatorio intensivo. CEFR B1 level, undergraduate-level. 25 hours.

Volkshochschule Erfurt, Germany | 2001

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A1 level, adult learners, three editions, 30 hours each.

  • Curso general de español. CEFR A2 level, adult learners, three editions, 30 hours each.