The school began teaching Spanish in January, 2011, in a 2-story building which was actually built as a modern residential home in Colonia Itzimná, and retains much of the charm and intimacy of a family home. The air-conditioned bedrooms have been converted into classrooms, and the living room is a computer room where students are free to use the computers for homework, sending emails, or finding something on the Internet. The kitchen is a kitchen, with access to all, and the dining room is a lounge area with wireless Internet for those who bring their laptops to school. And the garden is a garden…with a swimming pool! Students are welcome to bring their swimsuits and have a swim before or after class.
Classes at Spanish Center Mérida are open to anyone over 18, and class size is limited to five students, to enhance the opportunity for interaction with the teachers. All teachers have teaching certificates and Licenciaturas in Modern Languages.
There are six levels of Spanish to choose from, and placement will be determined based on an entrance exam and evaluation. The six levels, known as A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, and C2, are based on the European standard of language learning levels, for beginning, intermediate, and advanced learners.
Courses are designed around one-week learning modules, from one week to eight weeks, to accommodate anyone from short-term travelers to long-term residents. A “week” is either four, five, or six hours per day for five days, depending on the level of intensity desired. There are also combinations of group and private learning, as well as completely private lessons if desired. Prices begin at $220 USD for a one-week Standard Minigroup course. One-week modules can begin on any Monday year-round.
Course content comes from Instituto Cervantes, universally respected as the expert promoter of Spanish all over the world. Classroom time is blended with cultural outings to mercados, restaurants, etc. The student has to lose his or her fear of speaking in a real situation, so the teacher places them in a typical setting where they have to communicate what they want to buy, eat, etc. Cultural activities include cultural seminars (on history, art, etc.), Salsa and Merengue dancing classes, cooking classes, sports and beach outings, school parties and barbecues, movie nights, dinner or bar nights, and visits to local markets, museums, colonial cities, archaeological sites, haciendas, and more. All courses are designed to help students improve their Spanish focusing on the skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking.
Spanish Center Mérida also arranges accommodation for those who need it, either with a carefully selected host family, or in an economy apartment, residence suite, student residence, hostel, or hotel. Fees include registration, course and accommodation as booked, placement test, Mérida airport pickup upon arrival, information package, use of Internet, some activities and a certificate of completion.
There is a special course created just for expats: the “Minigroup 15”. It takes place mornings from 9 am to 12 noon and afternoons from 5 pm to 8 pm (your choice). That’s 3 hours per day; 15 hours per week! Not too heavy. It emphasizes daily life; stores, restaurants, etc.
And now, with the virtual classroom of the Spanish Center Merida you can learn Spanish via Internet with experienced native-speaker teachers in real time and regardless of your location. You will learn Spanish in live classes with professional native Spanish teachers. On your screen you have eye-contact with your teacher to communicate with him as in a real classroom and work together on the whiteboard. All you need is a computer with Internet access, a webcam and a headset. Special computer skills or the download of software is not necessary. Online classes are available Monday-Friday 9 am-9 pm Mexican Central Time. A minimum of 10 lessons is required.
For those who can’t decide between hiring a private tutor for an intensive learning experience or joining a total immersion class at Spanish Center Mérida, Siegmar explains, “The social contact with other students enhances the learning experience. Students can help each other, correct each others’ mistakes, and practice speaking with each other to help overcome the fear of conversation. After all, the purpose of learning a language is to be able to communicate in that language. It is easier to do this with others who are at the same level as you.”
Siegmar also says, “Mexico is the perfect place to learn Spanish. Not only because of the country’s beauty and and its cultural heritage, but also because of the clean and clear Spanish which is spoken here. And what better place than Yucatán, which offers what most Spanish students are looking for: rich culture, nice and welcoming people, countless natural and cultural attractions, affordable living, great weather and delicious food! With its museums, parks, markets and outdoor cafés, Mérida is a fascinating and cosmopolitan place with a vital cultural life and an authentic Mexican atmosphere, and is famous for its warm hospitality and kind people.”
Calle 13 #108 x 18 y 20, Col. Itzimná
Tel. (999) 926 6819
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