LEARNING SPANISH AT THE COOPERATIVA
As a cooperative led by teachers, our goal is to teach you Spanish in such as manner that best sets the stage for you to become increasingly fluent. All of our classes are taught by Spanish teachers with many years of experience, and most have taught for years in the premier language schools in Oaxaca. While most teachers know English and other languages, our philosophy is that language learning has to happen in the language being learned, so that the students are immersed in the language starting at the beginning level. This also means that speakers of any language who want to learn Spanish are welcome!
We use a communicative method of instruction, in order to encourage engagement and allow our students to strengthen their communication skills. This means that while we focus on grammar and value grammatical understanding and form, the classes are conversational and in general, playful as well. We seek to balance the development of all language learning skills—speaking, listening, reading, writing—but we are especially attuned to how important it is for our students to take advantage of their time in Mexico by speaking and listening to native speakers. As such our classes are structured so that the students can actively engage in class at all times.
We offer classes at all levels and structure our classes based on the DELE system. We will send you an online placement exam so we can figure out what class you should be in and plan for it before you arrive. We also do an in-person or phone interview, if necessary or requested.
Below are our brief descriptions for Group Classes, Immersive Activities & Tours, Private & Specialty-Themed Classes, Language & Cultural Workshops, Online Classes, Community Workshops & Cultural Events, and Partner Workshops & Homestays. More details are available by following their links.
OVERVIEW OF CLASSES & ACTIVITIES
Our group classes are a central part of what we do. We see them as a way to share in the convivencia of learning and to make learning Spanish more affordable for everyone. We know that each student arrives with different language skills and learning styles, so rather than just offering prepared classes at each level, we tailor each group class to the individuals in them, which is one reason we request online placement exams. While obviously they cannot quite be as personalized as private classes, we seek to strike this balance to hopefully give our students in group classes the best of both worlds. Though our teachers are very experienced in teaching to many different people, group classes require some balance so everyone can learn from them.
Our group classes include access to a local intercambio language exchange partner (2 days a week), a short city tour, morning yoga classes (two days a week), and a “Conversaciones Cantina” Happy Hour, where you can practice chatting with teachers and students in Spanish at a local watering hole. See “Activities & Tours” below for more info on these and other activities at our space.
Immersive Activities & Tours
We organize various tours and activities for our students, which include intercambio language exchanges (conversations between locals and students in English or another language & Spanish), morning yoga classes, short city tours, and “Conversaciones Cantinas” Happy Hour, etc. These are all included in the regular group classes.
We also offer other teacher-led activities, a movie night, and longer tours, like our Urban Explorations tours, in which we ask for a donation.
PRIVATE Spanish & Specialty CLASSES
While group classes are our bread and butter, we also know they aren’t for every student, so we also offer regular Private Spanish Classes to students who prefer one-on-one (or two-on-one) attention. Our teachers can teach any level and adapt their approach no matter the student’s particular learning style.
We also offer top-quality Specialty Private Classes in specific themes led by experts in these areas, with particular focus in the creative arts, such as Latin-American literature, cinema, art and art history, etc.
If you are trying to decide between private and group classes, we would recommend that you take private classes if you strongly prefer having a class aimed directly to your level or style of learning.
LITERATURE & POETRY
INCLUSIVE, QUEER & IDIOMATIC SPANISH
ART, FILM & CULTURE
LANGUAGE & CULTURAL Workshops:
We offer a unique standing weekly workshop, “Playful Spanish” which is made up of thematic one-day classes that introduce the students to a variety of different ways in which Mexicans and Spanish-speakers in general play with their own language.
The workshop is currently made up of 5 classes:
Mexican Slang 101
(All levels welcome)
Chingar Chingón (Cursing with Chingar and much more)
(Intermediate & Advanced levels only)
Inclusive & Queer Spanish
(Intermediate & Advanced levels)
Mexican Idioms & Sayings
(Upper Intermediate & Advanced levels only)
Intro to Albures (the Mexican Double Entendre)
crash course workshops:
Additionally, we offering several two-day “Crash Course” workshops that are available on request:
CRASH COURSE: Spanish for Travelers (2 days, 3 hours a day, is a mix of classes and trips to the markets, restaurants, cultural spaces etc. to practice);
CRASH COURSE: Contemporary Art in Oaxaca (2 days, 3 hours per day, includes class discussion of contemporary art in Latin-America, Mexico and Oaxaca, as well as visits to local museums, galleries, etc.)
OTHER LANGUAGE & CULTURAL WORKSHOPS
Lastly, we can turn many of our specialty classes into workshops if we have more than one student, as well as offering short or crash courses in these themes. If bringing a university or other group who wants thematic group classes, we can adapt our courses for your needs.
We are also pleased to be able to offer online classes to our students. We offer the classic option of paying by the hour for classes; however, we also offer monthly subscriptions that provide a much more complete package of learning opportunities that include: weekly online classes, daily homework, and teacher support throughout the week.
Like our private classes, we can accommodate students that have a particular interest or theme, such as in literature, the arts, vernacular slang & inclusive (queer) language, and medical Spanish.
Cultural Events & community Workshops
We are a new space and we are working to make sure that our space, in addition to being home to a language school, also serves a cultural space for community events, such as photo exhibits, book readings, movie nights, etc. Additionally, we are working with others who would like to use the space to hold art workshops for the whole community. These events and workshops will be held in Spanish. We invite all students to participate in these workshop and events — as both are great forums for interacting in Spanish and learning in a different context, and participating more fully in the community. Your teachers can briefly prep you for the events, so you’ll have some context going into them.
We connect students with local artists so they can take classes in Spanish from locals and connect more fully to the community.
We are happy to place students in homestays with local families. Currently we have families in the historic downtown, but are looking to expand to other areas in order to reduce costs for students and give a new type of experience.