Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Last Day

Today was not only my last day but also the last day for speaking exams. I have been working with groups of students on their speaking parts since the day I began. Therefore, today was a great celebration. They were singing songs, dancing, and eating snacks and candy. It was a fun day. I'm excited that many students came close to almost perfect marks. All students tried their best and that's all I can ask for. 

Today I received cards, a poster, food, and a tshirt. The staff and students at the school are all very sweet. Tonight I will spend my last night with my family. It doesn't seem real that tomorrow I will be leaving. I plan to stay in touch with my teacher and with my family. My family discussed me staying longer if it was not for graduation. Mark (host brother) said that I can do that over Skype. We have already discussed them coming to visit me in the states. 

I am very thankful to have been given this opportunity. I met some wonderful teachers, worked with some great students, and had an amazing host family. I will encourage others to take on the same adventure. Not only do you learn about other cultures but you also discover things about yourself. 

The beginning of the end

Today is my last Monday teaching here. It is bittersweet. Although I miss my family and my American things, I will also miss my family, my teacher, and the students here in Barcelona. I am looking forward to finishing the English speaking test this week with the students. I look forward to seeing the progress that they have made since I first began. 

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Unexpected Adventure

This weekend the SPED girls took a trip to Italy. First we started in Rome. There we visited the Vatican, the Colleseum, and the Trevi Fountain. It is a beautiful place filled with history. We took a bus tour around the city which was nice. 
The next city that we visited was Florence. The city looks older and is filled with art museums. We took a bus tour on this day also. It rained on this day which made it kind of lousy. We did visit a museum which housed Michelangelo's statue of David. They would not let us take any pictures unfortunately. 
The final two days were spent in Venice. The town is gorgeous. It looks like something out of a movie. Here we took a water taxi through the city on the first day to visit the Palace. On the last day we took a gondala ride through the city. It was a gorgeous day. 


While loading the airport shuttle I noticed that my purse was unzipped which I found weird. I looked and my second purse inside it was also unzipped and opened. Somehow in the mess of people pushing and shoving to get on the bus someone managed to get through three zippers to steal my wallet. Because we were about to load the plane I had all my things ready for airport security. This included my passport, ID, and credit card. All of it was taken. There I was with no money or identification. I reported it stolen and then Annie and I began the adventure back to Florence to the US Consulate. We were unable to get a flight out of Florence, therefore we took another train back to Venice to catch the next flight out to Barcelona. We are currently awaiting our plane in the airport. I can not wait to get back to my family in Barcelona and back to a normal day at school. I miss my students! 


Friday

Everyday at school I work with students to prepare them for their English speaking test. First we did a practice with each group then began the actual test for their school mark on Thursday. I was very impressed with the amount of practice and effort that the students had put into their parts. I had one group to even pretend to be in an aquarium. They pointed to the wall and began discussing various fish. I have learned so much about my students through this assignment. I know about their families, their hobbies, and their career plans. They tell me where to eat, what I should visit, and where to shop. 

On Friday when I left school I had multiple students to stop me in the hallway and tell me to have a good weekend. It is crazy how attached I have become to these students in such a short time. I wish that I could stay longer to hear how they do on their actual tests. I know that most of them will do very well. I can't believe that we only have 3 days left next week. 

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Minecraft and Google Earth

Following a tutoring session with my host brother after school, I met up with the SPED girls to travel to Tibidabo. The view from here was amazing! We also went in the church and gift shop. When we returned we had some trouble navigating but got some help from the locals. 

We ended up eating at a 50's dinner claiming to have American food. They had a Mississippi burger that came from Louisiana, chicken fingers, and shakes. They even gave us a souvenir when we left. When I came home my host brother was talking about looking at a house on google. I showed him Google Earth. Then we googled my house and farm. He was so excited to see the cattle.

Today, for tutoring my host brother wanted to play Minecraft. We made a deal that he could play if he examined it all to me in English. Now I know all about zombies and giant spiders. When he left for rugby practice I went to the market with my host mom. After dinner Mark and I googled the Statue of Liberty, the Effile Tower, Stonehenge, and other major places across the world. It was a good night to have before leaving tomorrow for Italy. 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Weekend Travels

On Saturday I went with Annie's family to explore the city. We began with lunch by the sea and a long walk. Then we went to visit Born where we saw the old part of  town. We visited the Bacelona Cathedral, St Mary's church, the ancient ruins, the Catalonian government building, and the mayor's building. 

Today Annie came with my family along with Jenna's and two other families to visit the Torres winery. Afterwards we visited the beach Sitges for a picnic and a relaxing afternoon. 

I was able to see so much of Barcelona this weekend. I love the city and the culture. I am excited for what this coming week will bring!





Thursday, April 24, 2014

Day 3

Today is the end to my third day in Barcelona! Yesterday was Saint George (Sant Jordi) day. Similar to our valentines day. All the students celebrated in the school. There were presentations, singing and dancing. There were also rose petals everywhere. My host brother and my host father both bought me roses while we were out exploring the town! 

Today I began assessing students in English on their speaking skills. These students will be tested in June to receive their first certificate in English. I was amazed at how many languages these students know or are learning. Many of the students are bi-lingual. They speak Spanish and Catalon. Then in school they are learning English and French! 

After school a group of WKU students took the metro to the city center and then down to the port. We went to a Cafe that looked like a rainforest inside. It was similar to the Rainforest Cafe but much nicer. Then we walked back through the city center to a restaurant called The Attic  where we had a nice sit down meal. it is now 11:17 and I am going to bed. My family will be up for another hour probably!


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Home

I was greeted at the school by my host mother. She helped pack my luggage through the streets to the apartment. I am now getting my self settled in and drinking some freshly squeezed orange juice. Later we will go back to the school for orientation and meet our teachers. I am excited and a little overwhelmed right now. This will be my home for the next month! 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday, April 14, 2014

To pack or not to pack?

This time next week I will be in Barcelona! I have been talking to my host mother on a regular basis lately; planning activities and discussing what to bring. The question now is do I start to pack now or wait?