September 1, 2008

First day of school!

No, this is not what the front door of my Spanish school looks like but I wanted a reason to show this photo of a random home across the street from the Gaudi in Gracia. Since I didn’t take any pictures of the school (as it really isn’t that interesting from the outside) I figured now would be as good a time as any to show this funny door knocker!

Day one of Spanish class was incredible if not only because it was wonderful to be learning this language some more that is all around me BUT it also was a great distraction to my flat-searching and stress of a cranky flatmate. I definitely don’t remember loving class nearly this much as when I was in high school or middle school, that is for sure (Katie, this teacher is nothing like ours at BHS)! The teacher is Spanish guy about my age who is very funny and teaches the class only in Spanish (of course). I had to take a short test upon arrival to see what class I would be put into as did the others who were starting their first days today. I am happy to say that I don’t think I was put in the remedial group since I was the only one in my class of thirteen that was starting their first day today. The school is run differently in that you can start at anytime during the year and sign up for as many weeks as you would like; I have chosen to take 4 which includes a group class every morning and then three mornings a week (before the group) I have one on one with a professor. That starts tomorrow and I am a little nervous about that.

So my class today started by each of us going around and saying our names, where were were from, what we did or studied and were prompted by the teacher for more information if asked. All in Spanish of course. Well, I took note of where everyone was from and here is the geographical data: Ukraine, Austria, Brazli, Japan, Poland, Czechoslovakia (wow, that only took me two guesses at the spelling of that to get it right), Germany and the United States. I am proud to say I was the only American! It was pretty amazing to me that here we were thirteen people from across the globe and we were united by one thing; the ability to (or attempt to) speak Spanish!

We did a lot of conversational exercises, some grammar, and learning of common Spanish phrases that are not literal translations but more proverbs. I even got homework to test some grammar which I already finished in the Plaza earlier and received many strange looks from the woman on the bench next to me as I was conjugating my past tense verbs aloud. It really helps though. And now I don’t feel like a complete moron being able to tell people what I did in the past; as opposed to telling them everything in the future and adding “yesterday” or “two weeks ago” at the end. Ie. “I go to the restaurant yesterday” or “I arrive in Barcelona two weeks ago”.

My broken Spanish will soon be fixed!

1 comment:

Matt said...

You may have spelled it correctly, but Czechoslovakia is no longer a nation! It is now the two countries of Czech Republic and Slovakia. But you're not alone. One or our presidential candidates, John McCain, made the same mistake twice last month.