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Great opportunity in Spain
Old 12-18-2010, 05:38 AM   #1
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Great opportunity in Spain

I recently returned from Spain where I participated in a wonderful 1-week program. You speak only English to Spaniards for 1 week. Website is www.puebloingles.com. Usually the Spaniard's companies pay for their employees to attend in order to improve there English. All food & accommodations were free to the Anglos.
You are picked up in Madrid on Friday morning & taken to the venue. In my case it was a beautiful 4-star resort in the Cazorla mountains in Jaen. The day before we departed, we had an orientation at a nice restaurant, which included a tapas lunch and a flamenco dance demonstration.
The 7 days consisted of 1-on-1 conversations, dining at tables of 2 Anglos and 2 Spaniards, practicing conference calls, doing fun skits, at chatting at the bar in the evening. It was very intense but so rewarding. Free time was only a siesta in the afternoon. I've learned so much about Spain & made many friends. Some of the Spaniards will be visiting me this summer. I highly recommend this program. Let me know if you have any questions.
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:28 AM   #2
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That sounds AWESOME!! Site bookmarked. Amazing, the kinds of deals that are out there.
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Old 12-18-2010, 12:55 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by karen64 View Post
I recently returned from Spain where I participated in a wonderful 1-week program. You speak only English to Spaniards for 1 week. Website is www.puebloingles.com.

I highly recommend this program. Let me know if you have any questions.
Karen,

I'd heard about this program several years ago but never knew anyone who participated.

Do you mind answering a few questions?

1) How much of each day is the Anglo speaking?

2) How are the daily sessions structured (is there a lesson plan)? Or do you just let conversations naturally evolve?

3) I'm an "extroverted introvert" -- and was wondering if this type of setup would be overwhelming, as I need some downtime to recharge myself. How much downtime do you get? You said only during a siesta -- but how long is that -- one hour?

4) If I understand it correctly, the Anglos pay their own freight to/from Madrid. Pueblo Ingles covers the Anglo's transport to/from the teaching locale, accommodations and food. Perhaps I'm missing something, but it seems like a whole lot of time 'working' for the Anglos -- just for, basically, room and board.

5) Did you get to practice any of your Spanish?

5) What did you learn? What would you do differently?

6) Would you do it again?

7) Anything else that I may have missed?

Thanks,

omni
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re: Pueblo Ingles
Old 12-18-2010, 05:51 PM   #4
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re: Pueblo Ingles

Omni, In answer to your questions?

1) How much of each day is the Anglo speaking?
If you go to the website, and click on "Are you a native English Speaker", then click on "your day," it will give you a typical schedule of what the day is like.

2) How are the daily sessions structured (is there a lesson plan)? Or do you just let conversations naturally evolve?
You can talk about anything you want. This is not a classroom-type setting. Although the program is structured and punctual, it is also very relaxed.

3) I'm an "extroverted introvert" -- and was wondering if this type of setup would be overwhelming, as I need some downtime to recharge myself. How much downtime do you get? You said only during a siesta -- but how long is that -- one hour?
Normally you get 90 minutes for siesta, but if there are more Anglos that Spaniards, sometimes you will get an extra hour of free time.

4) If I understand it correctly, the Anglos pay their own freight to/from Madrid. Pueblo Ingles covers the Anglo's transport to/from the teaching locale, accommodations and food. Perhaps I'm missing something, but it seems like a whole lot of time 'working' for the Anglos -- just for, basically, room and board. Although it is sometimes intense, it does not feel like "work". It's an opportunity of a lifetime for the right people. I added a few days before Pueblo Ingles to see Madrid, and a few days after the program. The weekend after the program was spent hanging out with the Spaniards that I really clicked with. One Spanish friend took me to places that I would never have experienced as a tourist. One special memory that comes to mind is when she took me to a Tapas bar, way off the beaten path, where 2 of her Spanish friends came to join us and meet me. It was a wonderful visit. There are not many opportunities like this where you travel to another country and can really get to know some locals. Whenever I go back, I am invited to stay with them. We talked so much about everything and anything, but the staff do discourage talking about certain controversial topics, such as bullfighting, the Spanish Civil War, Former President Bush, etc.

5) Did you get to practice any of your Spanish? Not during the program. Absolutely no Spanish is allowed. But I did get to practice my Spanish before & after the program. I started speaking my limited Spanish a little to them the weekend after.

5) What did you learn? What would you do differently?
I learned alot.......that Spain is a much more civilized country that I imagined. (less problems than Italy). Their unemployment rate is 20%. Many of the Spaniards were women, and there is much less machismo in that country than I expected, although the Spanish women did complain that there was sometimes discrimination in the workplace as far as promotions. The most important thing I learned was that we are more the same than different. Same feelings, same sense of humor, etc. What I would do different next time, is diet before, because we ate as much as you would on a cruise ship.
6) Would you do it again? YES!!! I plan on doing it several times in the future, probably every 2 years. Next July I hope to be accepted if my daughter (who will be 13), is accepted into the teen program at the same time. I hope to try every location they have.

7) Anything else that I may have missed?
The companies pay Pueblo Ingles over 2000 euros to send their employees there for a week. If you do a search on Pueblo Ingles you will find quite a few blogs where people talk about their experience. All positive from what I've read. The Spaniards were mostly professionals, (accountant, nuclear engineer, businessmen). The Anglo in my groups were from the US, Canada, New Zealand, Wales, and Ireland. Some were retirees (as they have plenty of free time, others were 20-something's doing a gap-year and already in Europe. Two women from Alaska were there who work 8 months a year in Denali Park then have 4 months to travel.

Hope this gives you a better understanding if it's for you. I would recommend it for someone going to Europe to travel, and then tack this special week on your tour.
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Old 12-19-2010, 10:07 AM   #5
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Thanks, Karen, for your informative responses.

I'll add this to possible things to do the next time I plan to travel to Europe/Spain.

omni
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Old 12-19-2010, 11:17 AM   #6
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Karen
Could you please comment on the smoking enviroment. Their website indicate you need to be tolerant of secondhand smoke (which we are) but I am wondering just how "thick" it is. Are they able to offer "no smoking" rooms for sleeping? Is active smoking permitted during the actual sessions?
We are really intrigued about this opportunity but would like to appreciate more just how intense the locals are with their smoking during the sessions.
Thanks
Nwsteve
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Old 12-19-2010, 11:42 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by nwsteve View Post
Karen
Could you please comment on the smoking enviroment
+1
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