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Pare Coll – Vic

Alex is a Conversation Assistant in Escola Pare Coll in Vic. He arrived in January and has quickly adapted to his new school, new home and new way of life, with an open mind and with the help of the school and his host family. We hope he enjoys the next months as much as possible too!


I moved to Vic, Catalonia in january of this year. The first few days I spent with my adopted family who, it must be said, are brilliant. They were extremely welcoming and have continued to be conscientious, warm and generous ever since, especially in allowing me to be part of their family and including me in their daily activities. I have had fun trying to get their three sons to speak English (mostly while playing basketball and/or football), and they are coming along very well. I’m lucky that they speak some english and they have introduced me to different aspects of Catalan culture and to various people of different ages so i have never felt isolated in this new place.

My experience at school has been very fun too. I have been lucky, once again, that my tutor and the rest of the teaching staff have been incredibly helpful and welcoming and continue to be so each and every day. The school is large, with students from 5 to 16 years, but we have found that games and dialogues have been very successful in encouraging the children to speak english. Interestingly, a large number of ESO students are going to London in the near future so I have been trying to give them an idea of what to expect and certain tips insider tips on the city. I also regularly help with pronunciation, grammar and any other linguistic questions they may have. We have a strict ‘only English’ rule in class wherever possible.

Overall, my experience of Catalonia has been very special. I have felt comfortable from the start and this is down to the warmth and support of the people around me. I’m very confident that I am not the only conversation assistant to feel this way! I would wholeheartedly recommend this experience to others.

Gracies i Adeu.

Escola Pia Sitges

Jonathan is a Conversation Assistant in Escola Pia Sitges who works with students in Primary, Secondary and Batxillerat. He’s having a great time in Catalonia and everyone in his school is having a great experience too. Thanks for writing and sending photos!


Since moving to Catalonia in October I have been involved in a variety of interesting, enjoyable and challenging situations. After applying for the CAPS program, I was told I would be placed in a small beach town that I had not previously heard of – Sitges. Sitges is a well-known tourist destination, popular for the many beautiful beaches and nightlife both in the town and in neighbouring Barcelona.

On arrival at Barcelona airport (El Prat), the new assistants were greeted by members of the CAPS administration. We were then taken to a hotel and provided with some valuable training and information regarding our work placements. I found this training very reassuring, as all members of staff seemed happy and eager to answer questions or any doubts that we had. The following day, the excitement began to build as our host families began to arrive and whisk us off to our new Catalan homes.
I am extremely happy and have a great relationship with my family, they are extremely generous and have made me feel very welcome in their home. It will be sad day when the time comes to leave! We improve each others language skills by speaking Castilian, Catalan and English on alternating days.
My working life here in the school continues to be interesting, enjoyable and provides me with new challenges on a daily basis. I work with primary, secondary (or ESO as it is known as here) and 6th form (Batxillerat) students providing English conversation games, role plays, listening exercises and often team-teaching in conjunction with the local teacher. I have also been able to start some small musical workshops which is a nice break for both the students and I!
To conclude, I am thoroughly enjoying my experience in Catalonia and would especially recommend the program to anyone who would consider teaching as a future career path.

FEDAC-Sant Andreu

We have received another submission, this time from Escola Mare de Déu de la Mercè, FEDAC-Sant Andreu in Barcelona. We thank them for taking the time to write!


Hola, sóc l’Helena, tutora del nostre assistent de conversa, el Kai Collins.

Quan em van encomanar aquesta tasca em costava fer-me a la idea d’una persona de parla anglesa voltant per la nostra escola. En pocs dies, no només em vaig acostumar a aquest fet, sinó que de seguida li vaig trobar els avantatges. És un luxe poder comunicar-nos a l’escola en anglès en el dia a  dia. Les nostres sales de profes han fet un canvi, s’han enriquit. Igualment s’han enriquit les classes, els passadissos, el menjador  i els patis… A l’Escola Mare de Déu dela Mercè, FEDAC Sant Andreu l’anglès ja no és només competència dels professors d’aquesta llengua, ara l’anglès és més viu gràcies a la presència del Kai.

                                                                                 Helena Giménez i Medina

Being a conversation assistant in Barcelona is the best thing I´ve ever done, especially in terms of work!

Since arriving here at the start of October I have settled into Spanish life even though before moving here I had never spoken a word of Spanish or Catalan. When first arriving I felt so excited by what the next year or more had in store for me and the excitement hasn´t dwindled. I am now living with my second host family and both have been amazing at helping me to become part of their family whilst still recognising that I am an adult and treating me like one.

Having never considered teaching before moving to another country and becoming one was a big step, and one that I´m glad I made, teaching children from the age of 3 to 16 is great as  every lesson is different and I never get bored of the same old class all day. The teachers at the school have been amazing at helping me teach in class and feel welcome. My tutor has been especially good to me helping me with anything that I need, such as taking me to the hospital for appointments as I am diabetic and introducing me to her niece who teaches me Spanish. Moving to Barcelona was the best decision I’ve made in a long time and I would highly recommend it to anyone (and already have!).

Kai Collins