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Santa Teresa de Jesús – Vilanova i la Geltrú

Santa Teresa de Jesús school, located in Vilanova, has been in the Conversation Assistants program for many years. This year they are hosting Kendall, who comes from the US. We leave you with the text that Kendall and his tutor, Roser, have written for us.

Thank you so much!


L’auxiliar aquest any ha vingut de més enllà de l’Atlàntic, dels Estats Units: des de Boston a la nostra escola a Vilanova i la Geltrú. La seva llengua materna, l’accent i el bagatge cultural són totalment diferents als que estàvem acostumats d’altres auxiliars de conversa, que sempre havien vingut del Regne Unit o Irlanda. Aquest fet ens ha permès a tota la comunitat educativa gaudir i aprendre amb una persona de parla anglesa, però amb unes arrels i tradicions totalment diferents.

Com cada any, l’auxiliar col·labora a tots els nivell educatius que tenim a l’escola, des d’infantil, passant per primària i secundària, i fins i tot a CF. S’està ocupant de grups reduïts de conversa, i col·labora també en altres projectes que es duen a terme a l’escola com l’English Song Contest, o la trobada amb alumnes anglesos de Plymouth.

Com a tutora de l’auxiliar, crec que ha estat molt enriquidor per als alumnes poder posar al mapa un país tan gran i tan divers com els Estats Units gràcies a tot allò que ens ha relatat el Kendall.

Kendall Fears - primaryVilanova i la Geltrú is a comfortable and very active town located about 40 minutes outside of Barcelona city. Since October, I have had the privilege of teaching as an English conversation assistant at Col·legi Santa Teresa de Jesús — situated right in the heart of the town center amidst bustling cafes, tantalizing food shops, and numerous cultural sites.

 My experience thus far has been absolutely phenomenal. The tapas and local dishes are too good to be true, the beaches are absolutely beautiful, and the people are open and carefree. Catalonian culture is very laid-back, which is very different from the hurried and rushed life I was used to in the United States. I adore how open and warm the Catalonian people are and have had no trouble in finding people to talk to and make acquaintance with, whether at the gym, bar, or bus stop.

Apart from having some of the best food of my life, witnessing some of the most captivating landscapes, and meeting some of the most interesting people during my stay here, I have also had the chance to help the locals out with their English in the school and in my private lessons. In the school I teach students from ages 6 through 22. At first, the news that I would be teaching students from the primary level up through the vocational courses was daunting, and creating lesson plans to span the breadth of the age gap did prove challenging, but within a few weeks I was able to get the rhythm down and things became much smoother. In fact, the most challenging aspect of my work soon became the most enjoyable; the wide array of ages that I teach makes for an equally wide diversity in the lessons that I give. On a typical day, I could go from talking about animals and colors in the primary classes, to debating global issues with the older students in ESO all within the same morning. I also love how, no matter the age, the students usually do not hesitate to express how they feel (for better or for worse), and this always makes for an interesting and interactive classroom environment.

Throughout my time with Santa Teresa, my tutor Roser and the entire faculty have always been there for me if I ever needed anything and have always offered a helping hand. Moving to a new country is challenging enough, but knowing that I had a support system made the transition as seamless as possible. I am now living with my second host family, and have been pleasantly surprised at and will be eternally grateful for the level at which both of my host families have opened up their homes and family lives to me, a stranger. Before coming to Spain, I had never lived outside the United States, and even though I had considered myself open-minded and globally-conscious, I had not really seen with my own eyes an example of what life is like outside of American borders. I have called this poble my second home for the past 5 months will continue to do so for the rest of my life.

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.


Escola Sta. Teresa de Jesús – Vilanova i la Geltrú

Escola Santa Teresa de Jesús in Vilanova i la Geltrú joined the PAC three years ago. This year they are hosting Martin, from the UK, who works with students of Primary, ESO and CF! Thanks for sharing your experience with all of us.


My experience at Santa Teresa de Jesús has been fantastic, the time I have spent here as an Auxiliar de Conversa (Conversational Assistant) has been enjoyable and a great learning experience. The teachers are very friendly, accommodating and patient. If you have a positive, creative and enthused attitude toward teaching, you will love it here; the more you give, the more you get back.

I was lucky enough to teach a wide range of levels:  Primary, Secondary and Vocational (Professional: Administration and Commerce). Usually I taught groups of 5 – 7 in my own classroom from each year group, I also assisted in others classrooms when necessary.



Through negotiation I was able to create and expand on my own material and methods, this was an incredible opportunity to test my own teaching skills and methodology as well as informing and improving my ability to adapt and alter my teaching strategies to suit a variety of levels and needs.

Vilanova i la Geltrú is a wonderful place with the amenities of a big city but the community of a close-knit village. It’s situated between Barcelona and Tarragona and it’s a good place in terms of travelling around Catalonia (by train, bus, car).

Almost everything is within walking distance in Vilanova and there are plenty of interesting and quirky cafes and bars to explore to your hearts content. Vilanova is also well known for its celebrations: Carnivals, Festivals and Fiestas; it’s an amazing place to be.

Escola Santa Teresa de Jesús – Vilanova i la Geltrú

Escola Santa Teresa de Jesús is a school located in Vilanova i la Geltrú, in the Mediterranean coast. It is their second year in the Conversation Assitants Program and they are having a great experience. Marcus has fully integrated into the school and Vilanova, as you will read in their submission for the blog.


Nadales solidàries

El dia 22 de desembre, i complint amb una tradició que fa anys que està arrelada al nostre Col·legi de Santa Teresa de Jesús, els alumnes de 4rt d’ESO van anar a cantar nadales als avis de la Residència Santa Teresa, situada a la part antiga de Vilanova i la Geltrú.

Enguany comptàvem amb una participació estel·lar: el Marcus. Ell, a més a més de ser una gran auxiliar de conversa participa amb gran interès en les activitats de la comunitat educativa. En aquesta ocasió va voler acompanyar-nos no només de presència, sinó també musicalment ja que toca el saxofon.

Els avis van estar molt contents amb la nostra visita, fins i tot es van animar a entonar alguna Nadala. Acabat el recital particular ens van oferir refrescs i galetes, a més a més de fer-nos entrega d’uns punts de llibre que ells mateixos havien elaborat. Tot menjant era quan arribaven les preguntes d’una avis curiosos per la vida dels estudiants, professors i com no podia ser d’altra manera, de l’auxiliar de conversa que parlava una llengua estranya i venia d’un altre país.

Tots vam considerar que l’experiència havia estat molt enriquidora, els alumnes van connectar molt bé amb els avis i entre tots vam començar a crear un caliu nadalenc que ens ha acompanyat durant totes les festes d’una forma solidària, integradora i molt divertida.

Roser, Marcus’ tutor

Making the decision to move to Spain to take part on the CAPS program has been one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. I’m absolutely loving my time here in Vilanova, teaching the kids English at Escola Santa Teresa, planning activities, taking part in school trips and learning the Spanish language. My Catalan family have made me one of there own by looking after me so well and making me feel at home. Vilanova i la geltru is a beautiful city and I’m pleased I was able to come here to experience a new lifestyle and culture.

I find being a Conversation assistant here at Santa Teresa rewarding as it challenges me everyday to communicate clearly and effectively with the kids, and to create a fun learning environment where they feel comfortable to speak English with me and with one another. We play English board games, have mini debates, role play and our latest and most fun activity we did was singing Christmas carols at a elderly home for the elderly. I accompanied them with my saxophone on a few of the songs and sang the rest, I had a blast. I’m having a wonderful experience here, the teachers and especially my tutor make me feel welcome and are ever so helpful to me. I would definitely recommend this program to anyone wanting a new life experience.

Marcus Joseph, Conversation Assistant