Who is the cultural activity coordinator and what do they do?
The cultural activity coordinator is a current or past Spanish language student who is there to attend to students’ needs, ensure proper upkeep of the building and participate and organize parts of the cultural programme and in general promote as much usage of Spanish in the premises as possible. You will find them friendly and helpful and each one will have been specially chosen because of their own personal desire to take forward their own Spanish learning which makes them a great example for all students on how much difference taking opportunities to speak Spanish will make to one’s own learning. They may also be the person who picks you up and drops off you at airports.
Will there be a native Spanish speaker present during the social events?
For most social events at least one of the Spanish teachers will also come along to the events and of course will further ensure as much Spanish usage as possible.
Will I always have to speak Spanish at the social events?
This depends on the social event, please see example timetable in social event programme. In general Spanish will be encouraged as much as possible and in certain events, i.e. Wednesday night Total Spanish night, it will be controlled in a fun way. On some nights the language used will be left open to the students present, as the focus of the event is on integration, which we are Spark place a high importance on.
Of course not. The social events programme is entirely optional, however with certain events, like the welcoming drink for new arrivals or the Total Spanish evening entertainment on Wednesday nights, participation is strongly encouraged for integration reasons in case of the first and because preparation is done in class for the second and also it is just a great opportunity to practice your Spanish.
What exactly is the “bursting bubbles booklet”?
Everyone knows learning a foreign language in the country of origin offers by far the best opportunity to progress your level as quickly as possible. However having the opportunity to use lots of Spanish outside the classroom is not the same as actually doing so. For this reason we have designed our bursting bubbles booklet with the notion being that each student comes to Spark inside of their own language bubble and the ones that burst the most holes into that bubble to allow Spanish in and out are the ones whose level will progress the must. The booklet provides personal and group challenges that the students will do to make sure they are bursting their own language bubble and hence maximising their own language learning. For example task 1 may be going to watch a movie at the cinema, task 2 may be setting up an intercambio through our language exchange system and so on.
Do I have to do the bursting bubbles booklet?
Part of the booklet will be covered in class and of course this will be part of the learning process, however although students will be encouraged and motivated to do the out of class parts, of course how much or little they do so will depend on them. Regardless how much a student chooses to use the booklet, we are confident it will help give them ideas on opportunities they could take up to better their own learning.
I have read a lot about the residence accommodation, are there other accommodation options or do I have to stay in the residence?
Of course not. Students can choose between homestay, private flats and the Sparkville residency. Homestay is staying with a Spanish family and probably offers the most complete Spanish experience. Private flats probably offer the most independence and Sparkville residency the most social experience. Students can also choose to find their own accommodation and are not obliged to use Spark’s.