Today, Agustinews is meeting Gloria Herrero. She is a teacher of English in Valle del Cidacos Secondary School in Calahorra. She is waiting for us at the hall of the school.
She looks anxious, as she tells us this is the first interview in her life. We follow her to a room where we could talk without being disturb, as everybody knows, a secondary school is busy and noisy between classes.
One of the first things that Gloria wants to make clear is that she is not an English teacher, because she is Spanish, she is a Spanish teacher of English, that means that she teaches English but she is not a native speaker of the language.
After this short comment we start the interview:
REPORTER: What can you tell me about your job? GLORIA: I love my job, although sometimes it is stressful. I like when my students greet me saying “hello” in English and not in Spanish, that means that they use the language and it is not only one more subject. That makes me feel very proud.
R: How long have you been teaching English?
G: I have been teaching English since I finished my university studies in 1991. I started in Santa Santa Teresa School in Calahorra and since then I have taught in many secondary schools, but this is definitely the last one.
R: What years do you teach?
G: Every school year is different, but this year I teach 1st , 3rd ,4th of ESO and Bachillerato.
R: Do you have a favorite level?
G: I like higher levels, because I can speak in English all the time, but I find 2nd of Bachillerato a bit stressful because the students are worried about marks and the PAU exam. The groups I like the most are what we call “bilingual groups “, these groups study several subjects in English and it is always fun and rewarding working with them, they are highly motivated, and motivation is one of the most important factors in learning not only a language but also any subject.
R: What do you find the most boring?
G: Definitely exams: correcting them and marking and correcting writings, sometimes it is hard to understand what the students mean.
R: What do you think about living and working in the same town?
G: At first I thought it was going to be difficult, but now I believe it is very handy, I do not have to travel and I spend that time with my family.
R: Have you ever had problems with your students?
G: Working with teenagers is very difficult, but I always try to take a deep breath before taking any decisions in class, and I always treat them as I like to be treated, with respect and politely, and trying to be funny in class helps a lot.
R: Finally, could you give us some advice to learn a foreign language?
G: To learn a foreign language, the best advice is to live abroad and to be in contact with the native speakers of the language all day. That is something that only a few can afford, so you can watch films, listen to music, read in English and do whatever you like doing but in English, plus using the foreign language whenever you can and have fun.
We hear the ring of a bell, classes have finished and we start to hear a rumor of people talking and walking.
It is time to finish our interview and thank Gloria for her kindness.