WEEK 0 – Your survival kit

Meet Alba

¡Hola! I’m Alba Gutierrez, and I’m very excited to welcome you to our “Viva La Vida” Spanish course. I’m a native Spanish teacher and I’ve had some wild adventures, teaching folks from 30 different countries in the last 10 years. I’m also a certified teacher and a DELE Exam examiner with a Master’s in Spanish teaching, focusing on online education.

I have taught Spanish in all sorts of places: I’ve worked at two Australian universities for four years, but also in primary schools, enterprises, community centres, and at the Instituto Cervantes, the Spanish top authority worldwide.

One of my favourite things apart from diving into books, soaking in art and music, and savouring yummy meals in great company is exploring the world. And I have fed that passion! I’ve collected 38 passport stamps, and I’ve lived in nine different countries spread across four continents.

On this amazing journey, I’ve had the chance to experience both sides of the language-learning process: being a student and a teacher. It’s in this dynamic that I found out that learning a language is not just about words; it’s about discovering the world, connecting with different cultures and people, and becoming a better global citizen.

My travels and expat life have genuinely shaped me, making me a better person. Yet, let’s not forget, that the journey had a lot of challenges. I’ve walked in your shoes, feeling “lost in translation,” dealing with communication problems and trying to navigate tricky cultural situations. That’s why, of all the things I’ve done in my teaching journey, this “Viva La Vida” course holds a special place in my heart. Because it’s like a

mirror of my own globetrotting adventures. Yes, I also suffered the frustrations of a language barrier and the challenges of cultural clashes.

So, the goal of this course is to help you to have a soft landing in your trips, leave behind stereotypes and dive into immersive travel experiences. And the first step? Well, it all starts with learning the language and understanding the culture.

As well, as a digital nomad, having completed my Master’s from a top Spanish university while in Australia and New Zealand. Online learning, it’s a mixed bag, right? It can be thrilling but also a bit lonely and confusing. Well, I’ve been there, and I’m here to guide you.

WELCOME TO “VIVA LA VIDA“

Now that you know me better, let’s see what “Viva La Vida” is all about and how it can transform your Spanish journey.

This course is essential if you’re planning to move to or travel to a Spanish-speaking country. It empowers you to socialize and make meaningful connections, navigate and succeed in day-to-day situations, and organize your trips without the anxiety of feeling lost or, most importantly, paying the “gringo fee”.

Our 10-week course is designed to give you flexibility, guidance, and accountability.

Each week, you’ll have goals and training to back you up. On our online platform, you’ll find self-learning tasks, bite-sized lessons, and fun collaborative projects with your Spanish buddies. Plus, you can ask questions and get support from your teacher. And if you’ve enrolled in the “PLUS” or “PREMIUM” options, you’ll have access to group video calls and 1-on-1 tutoring.

WELCOME TO THE WEEK 0

Before we officially start, let’s introduce Week 0. Don’t worry, no final tasks to stress about this week! Week 0 is your warm-up, designed to help you get familiar with the platform and show you that you already know more Spanish than you might think. It’s like a little confidence boost. I recommend you have a look at it and take note of any questions you may have; many of them will be addressed next week. Now, let’s talk about 3 practical tips to supercharge your learning:

  • Switch to a Spanish keyboard for easier typing. We’ve got video tutorials in this week’s documents.
  • Use WordReference or any other online dictionary for quick translations and examples. There are more options in the document.
  • And finally… Stay social! Engage on social media to practice daily. Follow “Spanish in the Air” on Instagram for some juicy insights and connect with native speakers and teachers. You’ll find more ideas in our documents.