MEET OUR AMAZING SPANISH SCHOOL TEACHERS!
Our SEPA Spanish teachers are a finely-trained, bilingual cadre of graduates of Costa Rican Universities who are endorsed by the Costa Rica Department of Education.
Besides their background in teacher education, each SEPA Spanish school teacher undergoes additional training in “teaching Spanish SEPA style” to students of all ages and backgrounds.
“The teaching has to be dynamic,” says Nidia Gamboa, director of SEPA School. “The students must not just sit in a chair and learn from the book; it has to be real life.”
In the classroom, SEPA students learn grammar with the emphasis on conversation instead of the other way around. Then, they take their learning ‘on the road’ by doing such Spanish immersion activities as shopping expeditions to the market; working with students in public schools; working in health institutions; doing volunteer work in environmental protection; going to the bank to make a transaction; buying food in a restaurant; going to the movies; amongst other real-life, project-oriented strategies that make the learn Spanish faster and deeper.
“I liked that we did not only have class, but other activities such as going to the movies and talking in Spanish to Tico students. I feel that I have become much more confident when talking in Spanish!” Matthew Toulouze, OVERLAND 2015
Here is a little bit about each of our amazing teachers!
Maribel Segura Arias:
I received my degree in corporate management of sustainable tourism with an emphasis on alternative tourism in 2013. I began teaching at SEPA Spanish School, while finishing up my degree, and discovered that my real love is teaching Spanish as a second language while working within an environmental protection environment!
I graduated from each one of SEPA’s ‘Teaching Spanish as a Second Language’ programs and am certified to teach students of all levels. I have taught at SEPA for three years and never looked back.
My experience of teaching Spanish to foreigners has been extremely gratifying because I have gotten to know so many special people. No matter what their age or background, I am always learning something new and interesting from my students.
I am intrigued by the dynamic way (see FAQ’s Teaching Methodology) we are taught to teach Spanish courses at SEPA. It is so innovative and different from all the models that students are accustomed to, myself included! I can only wish I had the opportunity to learn the same way as our SEPA students, back when I was a student!
Especially important, when our students return to their country, they take a part of our Tico (Costa Rican) personality and traits back with them.
It is so satisfying, when at the end of the course, I see the students leave with a better understanding of Spanish, just as much in grammar as in their ability to speak in a meaningful way with the people that speak this language. That’s when I know that we have met our objective!
Paula Aguero Baldi: Volunteer coordinator and Spanish teacher.
Besides being the volunteer coordinator and Spanish teacher for SEPA Spanish School for the last three years, I am also a painter and student of acrylic arts. I have graduated from each of SEPA’s ‘Teaching Spanish as a Second Language’ programs and love teaching all levels of Spanish students.
The experience of giving Spanish to others throughout these years has given me the great pleasure of knowing different people with extraordinary qualities who deserve the best from our teaching.
I have discovered that it doesn’t matter what nationality or age a student is, what matters is their interest to learn our language in our beautiful country of Costa Rica.
As a teacher, I make sure to give my best to my students. I make the classes just as playful as they are studious, to keep everybody’s interest and make it fun at the same time.
Adriana Calvo Cubillo:
I have worked as a Spanish teacher for 4 years and it has been one of the best experiences of my life. Currently I study ‘Teaching Spanish as a Second Language’ at the Technological Institute of Costa Rica.
I love teaching Spanish to people from other countries, showing the beautiful culture and biodiversity of my country; taking fieldtrips to the river, the mountains, seeing students enjoying themselves and at the same time learning so much. I know that, without a doubt, this is an incredible experience for them and it fills me with satisfaction to be a part of that.
Karina Young Rivera
I am an English Teacher, graduated from Universidad Latina de Costa Rica. Also, I am a Spanish Teacher with 4 years of experience, teaching Spanish as a second language. I have participated in every training of Spanish melthodology and grammar giving by SEPA School.
The experience of giving Spanish to others throughout these years has given me the great pleasure of knowing different people with extraordinary qualities. As a teacher, I make sure to give my biggest effort to my students. The greatest satisfaction is teaching Spanish and Latin culture to students from different nationalities, and learning other cultures as well.
“This has been a wonderful trip for me. It really made a difference for me getting to stay this long and getting to live with a local family. I loved our professor Karina. I was not sure how I would do with four hours of class every day, but it was really good. We were able to see a lot of beautiful places around the area in our time off of school, which I really enjoyed and was important to see more of what Costa Rica has to offer. My stay with a tico family was so great. It was a really good fit for all of us. They were so welcoming and helpful with my studying Spanish and understanding the culture. I think it would have been better if I knew more Spanish before a came, but the timing was good for me so I came anyhow. We learned a lot of new information every day and it was hard to absorb it all. But also I learned a lot and can have basic conversation when I meet other Spanish speaking people in town. My professor was organized and thoughtful and I really appreciated her teaching style. Very helpful for all us in our group. Overall, it’s been a wonderful experience and I am so glad I got to be here! ¡ Muchas gracias!” Jennifer Light-Oregon MHCC.2017.
Ana Yancy Cubillo Díaz– Lead Teacher and Trainer for SEPA School:
I am a fully licensed teacher and am currently working at the Technological Institute of Costa Rica to get a second degree in ‘Teaching Spanish as a Second Language.’ I love teaching because it is another way of learning.
A Spanish teacher who spent a week in my advanced class said that I am the ‘grammar guru’, which gave me a good laugh. It is wonderful to see understanding dawn on the faces of my students as they learn how you put sentences together.
I have been teaching Spanish to foreign visitors for the last eleven years. It has been an incredible experience. Teaching Spanish to foreigners leaves me with an immense satisfaction, knowing that I have left in each one of my students a little bit of our language and culture.
“I had a great time at SEPA Spanish School. I have been talking about it to all my friends here. Anna was a wonderful teacher and I learned an enormous amount of Spanish grammar and basic structure. I now have to work with all the information she gave me and practice as much as I can. I have met someone here in Mahone Bay who was a Spanish teacher in Florida and we are going to “chat” in Spanish as much as possible. I am looking forward to coming back next year for more instruction!! I wish I could come sooner! All the very best to all of you. Hope you all have a great year. Looking forward to 2013!” Sally Jorgensen
Ready to learn from our amazing teachers at SEPA Spanish School?
Click here to enroll now!