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Col·legi Virolai – Molins de Rei

Col·legi Virolai, in Molins de Rei, has joined the Programa Auxiliars de Conversa for the first time this year. Their English conversation assistant, Victoria, comes from the UK and works with students in Infant and Primary school. Both students and teachers, as well as Victoria, are enjoying the experience and making the most of it. We leave you with Victoria’s views on the program and some photos. Thank  you for writing, Victoria & her tutor M. Carmen!


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe very first day I arrived in Molins De Rei I knew I would love it and have some very new exciting experiences.

The first day I arrived and was introduced to my host family and on that very same day it was the town’s festival. This included a massive camel on fire and the whole town had to run away from the camel and afterwards there was a big celebration. From that day on I knew I was not in Newcastle anymore.

I chose to do the CAPS program as I was not sure if I wanted to pursue teaching after university and therefore I wanted to gain some experience while at the same time I wanted to travel and experience a different culture and CAPS gives you the perfect opportunity for this.

I am a conversational assistant at Col·legi Virolai in Molins De Rei. It is about 15 minutes outside Barcelona. The school education starts from kindergarten to primary and secondary education.  However, I am mostly with the primary students with the children varying in ages from 6-12. I do English lessons with the teachers and also take P.E lessons.  Since I have arrived everyone has been welcoming and have been so nice, generous and supportive.PHOTO 1

I feel like I have gained a lot of experience being here for 5 months and it is very rewarding when you see the children expanding their very own English vocabulary and knowing somehow you played a part in that. I have to say though some of my favourite classes would be in kindergarten as they get so excited when they see you or you happen to say your favourite colour is the same as theirs. They are always wanting to play with you and participate in the classes. I have also participated in outside the classroom going on school trips, one of them being to Montserrat which I thought was beautiful. Also it is not just the children who want to practice their English with you, the teachers want to as well and they try.

MONTSERRRATI was a bit worried about living with a family at the start as I am used to living with friends at University. However living with a family has been with one of the greatest experiences I have ever had and I would not change it. It is amazing how you can only know someone for 12 weeks and get a long so great and get attached.  You really get to know the people and they get to know you and you share your traditions and they share theirs and in Catalonia they are crazy fun. These are the people; the families, the teachers, my tutor and the friends that I have met here that has made it so much more of a positive experience for me.  I know when my time comes to an end here in Molins de Rei I am going to be very sad but I know I will still stay in contact with the people I have met here and I will always have my memories. After all it is an experience and I love working at the school and seeing the children every day.


Col·legi Santa Anna – Lleida

 Col·legi Santa Anna is a school located in Lleida. This year they are hosting Sarah, from the UK, as their Conversation Assistant. Sarah works with students from 3 to 16 years old, who enjoy spending time and speaking English with her.

We thank Sarah and her tutor, Eva, for writing to us and also sending some wonderful photos!


 sarahmain2After graduating from Lancaster University with a degree in English Language and Linguistics, I wanted a chance to travel and experience a new culture, whilst putting my degree to some use.
CAPs has proved to be the perfect programme for me.
I am working at Santa Anna School in Lleida, Catalonia. My role within the school involves practicing conversation with small groups of students from each class; I am often extremely impressed with the level of English the students have! Other than teaching, I have been involved in some out of class activities, such as playing a demon in the Christmas performance of “Els Pastorets” alongside the 4th ESO students.

I have had no problems fitting in here, as I’ve been made to feel so welcome from day one. My host family are fantastic; I’ve been very lucky. I have learnt sarahmain4so much from them about culture and language here in Catalonia. I was very much thrown in at the deep end, having snails for my first meal! They have taught me how to cook typical foods such as prawn and crab soup, Spanish omelette and paella. In exchange I have made them typical English desserts such as Apple Crumble and White chocolate and winter berry cheesecake which have both been hits! The family always include me in their plans even at the weekends; we have such a laugh together and I feel I could go to them with any problem I may have. I truly feel part of the family.

Before arriving in Spain I was admittedly very apprehensive due to not knowing the language at all, and therefore not being able to communicate freely with everyone. It is difficult at times but I am picking up a lot more Spanish than I had anticipated (with lots of help from my host family) and I never really feel lonely here because there arether CAPs in Lleida who I meet on a regular basis and have become quite close to.
Also, the teachers in the school have all been very helpful and accommodating, and even the ones who cannot speak a lot of English always really make an effort with me.

I’ve had a truly fantastic experience so far and am excited to see what the next months have in store for me!



Escola Pia Igualada

Escola Pia Igualada has been in the Programa Auxiliars de Conversa for four years. This year they are hosting David, who comes from the United Kingdom. Here are his thoughts on the program. Thank you for writing to us!


david_epiaigualadaMy name is David Bosanquet, I’m 23 and come from England. I am the youngest in my family and, like the rest of them, love to travel to different countries. I enjoy teaching and have previously taught in Buenos Aries, Argentina where I did my TEFL course and Manresa, Spain. Now I am living in Igualada – a town to the west of Barcelona. I have found the people in Catalonia to be very friendly and helpful with there own traditions and unique festivals.

I am currently working at Escola Pia Iguadala, teaching 1st ESO to 2nd Baxt. The school is very big having 3 classes of around 30 for every year. This means I get to teach a lot of different personalities and level giving me quite a challenge. There are also two other CAs from different programs so I started the year with two new friends with soon expanded as we met more CAs and Au Pairs from different parts of Igualada.

I have lived with two different host families while in Igualada and am very happy here now. My host family are great as we have lots of common interests and they tell me all the best things to do and see introducing me to local customs and cuisine.

The advantages of the CAPS program are that you start the year with a large pool of other CAs, if you find yourself in Barcelona then meeting people is easy. The first weekend in Spain we all met up with the program and tried to make as many new friends as possible many of whom I still keep in touch with even living further away. Furthermore, as I have very few expenses any money I make is mine to spend or save as I choose.

Escola Santa Teresa de Jesús – Vilanova i la Geltrú

Escola Santa Teresa de Jesús, in Vilanova, has been in the Programa Auxiliars de Conversa since the beginning. They have hosted Conversation Assistants for five years now! This year, they are hosting Adam, who comes from Ireland.

Both Adam and her tutor have written to us to tell us what their experience with the program is like so far. Thank you, Adam and Roser!


Per cinquè any consecutiu, ha estat un plaer acollir un auxiliar de conversa a la nostra escola. Enguany tenim la sort de comptar amb l’Adam, que des del principi s’ha adaptat molt ràpid a la dinàmica de l’escola i s’ha integrat a la comunitat educativa com un més.

A més a més, ens ha acostat a la cultura irlandesa i ens ha fet partícips de les seves costums i tradicions, creant materials de presentació enfocats als alumnes.

Comparteix temps i espai tant amb alumnes de primària, secundària com de cicles formatius. És una persona polivalent, creativa i de fàcil adaptació.

Una de les activitats que destacaria és la realitzada amb els alumnes de 1er d’ESO. A classe estàvem treballant la interrogació, així que els alumnes es van posar a la pell d’un periodista i van preparar una entrevista per al nostre auxiliar, l’Adam. Molt amablement ell va contestar a totes dels preguntes dels 5 grups, que van enregistrar amb els seus mòbils per posteriorment transcriure’n el contingut. Als alumnes els va agradar molt aquesta activitat, ja que van poder palpar la utilitat real d’un contingut treballat a classe.

L’Adam també participa en activitats més lúdiques de l’escola, com el Carnaval, que ara estem preparant intensament, i altres sortides i excursions.

Estem molt contents de l’experiència viscuda fins ara, i continuem treballant amb il·lusió per tirar endavant aquest projecte comú.

Adam_VilanovaI have only just finished moving house for the second half of my stay here in Vilanova i la Geltru, and I can’t believe how fast the first part has finished. Time really does fly when you’re having fun! I am working in a lovely school that is quite literally dead in the centre of the town (And the town is quite big!). Every week I have the opportunity to teach groups from First Primaria (6 Years old) right through to commerce and Administration students in cicles formatius preparing to enter the workforce. It’s certainly an eye-opener.

 There are too many good things about Escola-Col.legi Santa Teresa to recount in a blog piece, but some of the highlights include the enduring popularity which many students afford to me as a Language Assistant, the ever-welcoming attitude of the teaching and administrative staff, as well as the occasional excursions we make to Places like Montserrat and the Nou Camp. On the latter of the three, the best of these has been the opportunity to work with a group of Sixth Primary students that represented the School on the Catalan TV English-Language game show “Fish & Chips”. It was a really great responsibility to be given. Of course we work on lots of other innovative English ideas with classes as well, such as collaborative writing with other Schools, and cultural presentations.

 Other teachers treat me as an equal, and I’ve been able to participate in lots of really fun things, such as “Teachers Day”, the annual Christmas teachers dinner and a teachers night at the restaurant for the School Founder’s Saint’s Day. When I’m not helping students with their English, my colleagues are more than happy to help me with my Catalan. The same can be said for my host families, the last of whom also gave me an amazing introduction to their town. I now wave to people on the street like one of the locals!

 Vilanova, like many towns in Catalonia, is opportunely placed for travelling to Spain for weekends, and I’ve already been to Madrid twice! People in the School community are never shy to share their tips for travel in and beyond the region! In an all-round manner, whether in Teaching, Language, Culture or travel, the programme has been a fantastic experience to date.