We didn’t know whether we were going to have English lessons or not on Wednesday, but surprisingly we did. At a certain time Mila and a bald smiling man came and went in to the classroom. She introduced him as Steve, a teacher from Chester . He is the one of the teachers working on the “Comenius”, a program which will permit us to work with students from Chester and to travel there in September. He told us in Britain no student calls him Steve, he is known as Mr.Walker (as the Lays’ chips there in the UK). This means that Mila would be known as Mrs. Bustos, which sounds really strange to us after four years. He seemed to be really comfortable in front of so many people staring at him. He was even joking. We had to start asking some questions, well first of all good morning every body, right ok…just joking :) We had sometime to prepare some questions to ask him, as he walked around the class. The first one to break the ice was Alberto. He asked him about his favourite food. He quickly told us that he likes Cocido (I don’t know how that is possible), paella, tortilla, criadillas…He actually told us two interesting stories, one about his bad experience with jelly “manitas de cerdo” and another one referring to something that happened to him when he was in Barcelona asking for a Spanish omelette :S . Nevertheless he said he has had wonderful experiences travelling around Spain, once when he went to La Rioja and a family adopted him, (well he taught their two children and for that the mother gave him everything…I mean she offered it all on a plate, I don’t know what I was thinking about, Sorry!) This time he wanted to go to Alicante a few days after working here in Navalmoral. He would travel just paying 6.30 euros (I can’t believe it!). But why Alicante? Maybe because the thing he likes the most about Spain is the weather and there it is supposed to be sunny there. But it is not :( Another thing he really likes about Spain is the people, as they are really hospitable and kind, he said. Then came George with “THE QUESTION”. Do you go to the gym? I thought Mr.Walker was going to make a funny gesture and say “WHAT?” But he didn’t. We were all expecting George to trip him up, but actually didn’t. He told him he normally goes to the gym twice a week for four hours. Then they started a kind of debate about who could lift more weights and … I can’t really remember how that ended but I caught that he used to play badminton, and he got hurt and had to stop playing.
After that extremely interesting question, Rachel asked something about languages. The fact is that Mr. Walker can speak two less languages than Rachel and I bet (we bet he could also speak German and Chinese). He can speak French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and of course English. Why does he think learning languages is important? (My question) Because they open doors. He recommended us to study something more than languages, such as business economy like he did. He started studying Spanish because he didn’t have the option to take Italian, so he thought “Let’s give it a try”. He spent two years studying really hard. He made lots of vocabulary boards and would write the words in English and Spanish. He would cover one of the columns and try to remember the meaning. He told us that it was really tough. There were not many more questions except the one about football and pretty girl students. He told us he supports Everton. He is a great fan. The team is not really famous or rich but he holds them dear to his heart. He said his students were pretty but that he found Spanish girl students prettier because they didn’t put so much make up on. He added that his girls were two years younger than our boys, but Soria said that was not a problem. Then we learnt a funny new expression “Cradle snatcher”. (Asalta cunas) And that is it, oops I almost forgot. He told us he will send us a fashion video with his students walking on a catwalk. He wants us to consider two uniforms. That is going to be great, taking into account we don’t even know the secondary school´s name. Well, I think this is kind of a farewell. We are going to have a wonderful bank holiday and as Mila said: Relax! Chill out! There is no need to take notes! I am looking forward to meet Mr. Walker and his students again: SARA :) Sara Pobre Trancón
Welcome Mr. Walker!! Last day we met Steve Walker, a Spanish teacher in Chester. Next year we will visit Chester and we will go to the high school where he teaches. He is now here in Navalmoral and on Wednesday we had the chance to meet him! As far as I´m concerned, everyone was pleased with his visit. Steve has been in our country before and I think that he is a Spanish teacher because he loves it (our country)!! He talked to us about the social, welcoming and nice environment in our country. Steve also mentioned the word “Spanish food” and he told us he likes all about it, that is to say, Spanish omelette, paella, testicles, Spanish stew…He finds these dishes delicious but there is also an exception… Since he was in Logroño, Steve dislikes pig´s trotters. He thinks they are so gelatinous!! He told us that his stay in La Rioja was quite enjoyable because he thinks that the people from La Rioja are the Andalusians of the north. Steve likes travelling around Spain because of the weather so he wanted to go to Alicante before leaving our country but unluckily the weather isn´t very pleasant this week…Talking about travelling, he told us that she went once to Barcelona and in the restaurants, the waiters only offered him French omelette sandwiches but never a proper Spanish omelette, so this detail annoyed him and he left the restaurants. In my view, Steve is a great gourmet, nothing can´t be compared to our national omelette!!
The teacher also talked to us about his hobbies. He enjoyed playing badminton when he was younger but he hurt his shoulder so when he goes to the gym, he can´t lift a lot of weight, unlike my classmate Jorge who said very proudly that he can lift 90 kilos!!!
Apart from food, Steve also loves football. He is a proud supporter of the Everton Football Club! The Everton and the Liverpool Football Club come from the same city, so Steve hates Liverpool because he believes that it is better and more famous than the Everton but it doesn´t mean that this team has to get all the prominence and importance. We also talked about languages. Steve can speak Italian, French, Portuguese, English and Spanish. He started learning Spanish because of a coincidence. When he was a student, he told a teacher that he wanted to study Italian but there weren´t any Italian lessons near his house so the teacher told him: “Why don´t you study Spanish? There are Spanish lessons in the city.” Finally, Steve took up Spanish lessons, he thought that Spanish was also a very important tongue apart from German and French. At first, he found our language quite difficult. The learning process was really hard and intensive. To learn the vocabulary, he revised every day the vocabulary charts he made with the Spanish words and the English transcriptions. He didn´t drop out the lessons because he found them quite interesting and at the end, he got good results. After that, he also considered important to study another degree and he studied business economics. Steve also highlighted the importance of learning new languages as our English teacher usually does. “Languages always open a lot of doors”, he said. Next year, Steve´s students will come to our high school. There will be 40 teens around 14 and 15 years old and we will be our hosts. There will be several activities like catwalks, visits…I´m looking forward to this activity, Steve´s visit was quite short…!! FÁTIMA CAMACHO SÁNCHEZ
vs Mr.Walker´s visit was very positive for me because I learnt and I enjoyed a lot. We asked him some questions about his life, Spain, languages… Mr.Walker was a peculiar man because he was very funny. I learnt a lot about him by asking him questions because I understood him quite well. We laughed a lot because he was very funny.
Mr.Walker´s purpose was get to know us a bit better because we are taking part in a Comenius exchange with the high school he works in in Chester. I think that he got a good impression from us in the same way as we got it form him. It has been the best English class that I´ve never had because I laughed a lot. ALBERTO PORRAS MARTÍN
Mr. Walker is a British teacher. His name is Steve. He teaches Spanish and French in a school in Chester. He came to our school because we are going to make a trip to meet some of his students who study Spanish. They are coming to Navalmoral in October and we are going to Chester in September. He was extremely funny as he was making jokes all the time! We asked him some questions. We had some time to prepare them, and while we were preparing them, Steve went around the classroom and took advantage of this little walk around to talk a little bit with us. When he got next to our posts, Pablo and I talked to him. He asked us about what we liked doing in our free time. Pablo told him that he liked going out with friends, doing sports, and climbing! Pablo showed Steve a photo of him on the top of a snowy mountain. Then, Steve asked me the same thing and I told him that I liked dancing and singing in my free time and also horse riding. I noticed that he had beautiful blue eyes. Then, we started to ask him our questions. There were all kind questions. We asked him about Spain, about his pupils and school, about his languages’ learning… and Alejandro asked him about pretty girls coming in October! He’s always thinking of the same things! Hahaha! He told us some anecdotes. He laughed a lot with him. Mila also laughed! Haha! It was a very good class and I’m looking forward to meeting him again and of course his students in Chester! María Marcos Vadillo Mr. Walker is from Manchester, England. He is a Spanish teacher in Chester and he works in a school of Arts. English people normally are shy and very serious but he is completely different. He speaks in very friendly way. He seems an outgoing guy. While he was speaking, I started to think of the difference between Mr. Walker and the rest of the English people that I had met before. His personality and character seem to be quite similar to those of the Spanish people because he is very open. He likes travelling around the world because he says that having the opportunity to get to know new places is always good for us. He prefers our weather to the English weather. MARTA LUENGO
Last week, on Wednesday, we did something different as instead of doing homework and filling in sheets, Mila brought a man called Steve Walker. He is a Spanish teacher in Chester , England , where he lives. He’s an outgoing man and he made us laugh a lot, he’s fumy and amusing. Now, I’m going to write a little text about what he answered when we asked him some questions. I don’t remember everything very well, because we didn’t have to take notes this time. I hope to do it all right. Mr Walker loves Spanish food, he told us he likes Spanish omelette, paella, chickpeas… many things. One day, when he was in Barcelona, he ordered an omelette in a restaurant and this omelette turned out to be a French one. He didn’t like it, of course! Another time, when he was somewhere, I don’t remember the place, he had to eat pig hands and he didn’t like this at all, either. It was kind of gelatinous. Talking about the weather, he said he really liked the Spanish weather. Here it’s not raining all day as it is in England. Once he was at the airport and he saw the price of a plane ticket to go to Alicante . It was only 6 € but unfortunately, it was raining… If you ask him about Spanish people, he’s going to say: awesome, fantastic!! He says Spanish people are very friendly. When we saw him, we said: Wow, he’s strong! He said he used to play badminton, but one day he injured his shoulder and for the time being he cannot play as it’s very painful. He likes football and his favourite team is Everton. He hates Liverpool, I think. Changing the topic and talking about languages, he says he speaks five languages: Italian, Spanish, French, Portuguese and obviously, English. He considers languages important because they open you doors to the future and to travel, and, in that sense, we can see in him a clear example: he decided to study Spanish and now we can see him travelling around the world! Steve is coming to Navalmoral with his students in October. They are around 13/14 years old. One day, in class, they apparently visited our web page and they saw our high-school and they got excited about it, I think they want to come here!! I can’t tell you more details about the visit because I don’t remember more information. That’s all! Bye! JOSE IGNACIO VERDUGO FRAILE
Steve came from Chester and gave us an entertaining talk. In this talk he told us things about his life and made us laugh. His favourite Spanish dish is cocido, paella and Spanish omelette. He loves Rioja wine and he told us that he loves everything; in general, he likes eating ver well. He also told us that the most popular dish in England is chicken. He can speak Spanish, French and Portuguese and a little bit of Italian and German. His opinion about Spain people is that they are kind, wonderful and hospitable. He normally goes to the gym and his favourite sport is badminton. He used to play it but he suffered an injury and he had to stop playing. His favourite Spanish word is ‘arregañadientes’
because he likes the sound of ‘rr’ and ‘ñ’ because in English it doesn’t exist. He started to learn Spanish by pure chance and then he decided to study it for … it’s a long story. He supports Everton although they don’t win so much and he hates Liverpool. He doesn’t know what the Portfolio project is exactly and he thinks learning languages are important because it provides you with lot of opportunities. His favourite thing about Spain … undoubtedly it is the weather. I liked his talk very much because I didn’t stop laughing and I did it by doing something that I love which is listening to speaking English NOELIA GRANADO
I really enjoyed the talk because Steve was very nice to us. I wish his students were as funny as him. He asked us about what we do in our free time. We asked him about his job, why he is a Spanish teacher and what languages he can speak. He can speak Spanish, French, German, Italian and English.He likes football, he supports the Everton Football club but he prefers rugby. He likes playing badminton very much. I want to meet his pupils because we in that way we will be able to speak English and improve and maybe we are going to go to Chester. Chester is near Liverpool, the city of The Beatles, The Anfield… PABLO LEÓN RÍOS
Mr. Walker is a very funny and charming man. He’s very kind, because he answered all our questions without any problem. He’s a short and bald man. He is from England and he’s a teacher there. We asked him some questions. He loves rugby, because it’s a very important sport in England and he also likes football. He thinks that there are a lot of differences between Spanish schools and English schools, because he thinks that in English schools people work harder and better. He can speak Spanish and he wants to learn German and Russian. PABLO CAMACHO
Last Wednesday we had a surprise in our English class. We met a new person, we met Mr. Walker. Apparently, he seemed a serious and strict person but a bit later we had the opportunity to discover what he was like. First, he started to talk a little bit about himself. Then, we began to ask him questions about his life, his studies, his abilities, etc. Mr. Walker is a Spanish teacher in Chester, England. Apart from Spanish, he can speak French, Portuguese, a little bit of Italian and, of course, English. In relation to languages, he explained us the method that he used to learn Spanish. It consisted of memorizing a list of forty words in Spanish every week. At the end of the week, he had to review all the words that he had learnt. He also told us what his favourite Spanish expression is. It is: "a regañadientes". The Spanish teacher also explained us what his favourite things about Spain were such as the people, because they are very sociable and open, the weather because it is very hot and finally, the food because he loves “paella” and “tortilla” but he hates “manitas de cerdo”. He had the opportunity to discover these things in Logroño where he lived with a Spanish family. He has got very good memories of his stay in Logroño because he was with a good family who loved him so much. One of our classmates asked him if he went to the gym and he said that he had gone when he was younger. He told us that he used to go two days for four hours because he had a complex about their fitness. When we asked him about what he thought of the Portfolio project, he answered that it was a good method to learn languages because it is funny. He told us that he had had a look at our work and he had really loved it! In connection with that, he explained us that his English students didn't do things like that. Apart from that, he mentioned some differences between students in Chester and Spanish students. On the one hand, in Chester, the girls go to the school with a lot of make-up. However, Spanish girls are more natural because we don't wear make-up. On the other hand, he explained that in England, they don’t usually call the teacher for his name, the polite form is to call him
for his surname such as Mr. Walker while in Spain, we call our teachers for their name, for example, Mila. For all these things, we realized that Mr. Walker was not a serious and strict teacher as he seemed, but a very happy and funny person. Raquel Carretero Juárez
HELLO, Mila! Today I am going to talk about a new English teacher. He is Mr Walker. Last Tuesday Mr Walker come to our English class. In groups of four we had to ask him questions about everything and Mr Walker answered them. Mr Walker comes from Manchester and he surprised me because he is really different from the English people I know. He seems to be really happy, funny, playful, outgoing and the strangest thing: He talks a lot. Mr Walker answered several interesting questions about Spain and England for example about the difference between one Spanish School and one English school.Apart from that, I liked the kind of advice he gave us in relation to our studies and languages in general. But not only did I find him a very nice person, he is a really interesting and an admirable person because although he can speak several languages, he continues with the same enthusiasm for learning more and more. I wish he´d been our language assistant.
Last Wednesday Mr. Walker came to our class. He´s from Chester and in the future he´ll come again because he´ll bring his students with him.He looked funny and very nice, he was making jokes all the time and making us laugh all the time.
Some of my classmates asked him several questions. George asked him if he used to go to the gym and he told us that he had started to lift weights recently as some of his friends had given him a kit of weights as a present. Another classmate asked him if he liked Spanish food and he told us that he loved it. He really likes paella, chorizo, cocido and tortilla. This class was really funny, I really enjoyed it. I could understand him very well although he spoke a little bit fast but very clearly. He was really nice and polite with us. Alejandro Soria Velasco
When I got into the classroom, there he was, Mr. Walker. He started to talk and I couldn’t follow him, because his accent was really different. We asked him some personal questions and about English education. When he started to talk in a relaxed and funny way, I couldn’t imagine that he was an English man, because in general English people look so serious and confident. He told us some stories about the school where he works and when we asked him about the Spanish language, he started to speak in Spanish in a perfect way and I was shocked. He could speak Spanish like a Spanish person. I enjoyed his visit because he was himself a complete lesson in English and I was so happy because I could understand everything he told us. ANDREA CALVO MARTÍN
Last Wednesday Steve or better known as “Mr. Walker”-as he said that English students usually make use of teachers´ surnames to refer to them-, came to our class. He is from Chester.He is in Navalmoral now because we are in a Comenius project that will take us to Chester and also students from Chester will come to Spain to visit us. They are in the same project as us. We asked him some questions and he was very funny because he told us some funny stories. I asked him if he liked Spanish women and he said he did. He also asked me if I would marry an English woman and I said “no”, but I thought about it and after that question I changed my mind, maybe, why not?. We don´t know what will happen in a near future. CÉSAR CARRASCO Next summer we are going to Chester (England) and pupils from Chester are coming here so we will have to welcome them in Navalmoral. Mr. Walker has come to get some information about Navalmoral. Mr. Walker is a Spanish teacher. Mila came into our English lesson today with Mr. Walker. He introduced himself and Mila told us to write some questions for him. While we were writing the questions, he was speaking with some of my mates. According to his answers, I got to know thing like: He loves Spain, he likes the weather, he worked very hard to understand Spanish but he learnt it in two years… He looked a very funny person and sociable. DIEGO SAN ROMÁN
Last Wednesday a teacher from Chester came here to talk with us. We prepared some questions for him. He was very funny! Well, some of his answers were that his favourite dish is “cocido”. He loves “tortilla Española”, “Rioja wine” and “paella”! He loves all about Spanish food! But, for example, he doesn´t like the “maninas de cerdo”. He told us the most popular dish in England is the “chicken Tikamasala”. His favourite thing about Spain is the weather! He speaks Spanish, French and Portuguese perfectly, and a little bit of German and Italian. Once he wanted to start to study Italian but where he lived, there weren´t any classes, so he couldn´t. He learnt Spanish in only 2 years!
He thinks that Spanish people are wonderful. We are hospitable, friendly, sociable... and he thinks Spanish women are prettier than English women because we are more natural. His favourite Spanish world is “arregañadientes” and “arrojadizo”, too. He sometimes goes to the gym. He usually runs and plays badminton. He has an injury in one of his arms because he had a problem playing badminton. He likes football and his favourite team is Everton. Talking about languages, he thinks that they are important because thanks to them you can live unforgettable experiences, travel... In his high school, pupils don´t use thePortfolio, but he likes being with his pupils, too. And that is all ! ESTEFANÍA IMPELLICIERI At first I thought that Mr. Walker was going to be an old and boring man and it was quite the contrary. He was a very funny teacher. He was all the class making jokes. He told us many things when we asked him some questions. He said he had been in Barcelona and in La Rioja. There he tried pig’s trotters and, even, he dared to try pig’s testicles. He told us that the team he supports is the Everton. He was very strong, so a classmate asked him if he had ever gone to the gym, Mr. Walker said that once he had tried but quickly he gave up. I hope to see Mr. Walker again, but next time in Chester.
Mr Walker is from a town of 400000 inhabitants located in Manchester. His town has a stadium, though it doesn't have a cathedral (main reason why it's not considered a city). He works as a teacher. He likes learning languages. He already speaks French, English, Spanish and a little bit of Russian that he learned from a grammar book a friend of his bought. He'd like to learn Italian and improve his Russian. He's been to Spain several times so far, and he'd also like to visit Italy, Brazil, Chile, Russia, China, and so many countries as possible. He says it's a pity that in his school teens are not interested at all in languages, and they do handy works instead. That's why he considers languages are a really useful and very enriching tool. He likes football, watching TV series (“True blood”, “Vampire Diaries”), reading and studying languages. JAVIER EL HANNATI
Last Tuesday we met Mr. Walker. He isn’t a typical English man. He was so kind, friendly and nice with us. He has visited Spain many times and he has been to Granada, Salamanca, Barcelona…. He likes Spanish culture but he doesn’t like the English man image. He thinks that here in Spain schools are better. He wants to learn German and Italian in the future. He is blad, he has got blue eyes and he is tall and slim (an English typical man). He doen’t like football because he thinks that football players earn a lot of money. He wants to travel to Brazil -as Mila- and Argentina in the future. LORENA PADILLA
Chester, Bonfire Night 2011
Hi guys! Just a few lines to say how much I enjoyed my experience, not only of Navalmoral de la Mata but also from a very warm reception by staff and students alike. I was so impressed by all the enthusiasm you showed in the English lessons, the examples of the Portfolio work were amazing. I don’t think my students would be able to produce as much in as much depth as that. I thought about what we do in the UK and it hit me that our Sixth Formers used to prepare a Record of Achievement (not in a foreign language, of course…this is England and, as everybody knows, everybody inside and outside the country speaks English…NOT!). In fact, it’s something that all students used to prepare from about Year 9 onwards. It was proper leather bound folder containing evidence of all achievements, awards, personal experiences, interests and aspirations for the future which eventually, according to the theory, a university or future employer would be able to use to assess candidates. Anyway, I don’t know why I’m rambling on about these bloody Records of Achievement as they’ve fallen out of favour and have been superseded by on-line applications via the UCAS website. I have to confess I was a bit nervous about giving you carte blanche to ask anything you wanted. I was even prepared to get seriously embarrassed and predicted uttering the words “I’m very sorry, but I can’t really give you details about X when not even my own students (or even my own family) know about that!” But I needn’t have worried. You were all so considerate (or maybe cowardly?) that in the end it was a pleasure. My students are currently working on the Fashion Show which we’re going to film and send via CD. If I can get them uploaded to our school’s VLE (virtual learning environment) the you won’t have to wait for the snail mail version to arrive and you can begin having a laugh at their accents and pronunciation right away from the comfort of your own homes. Our website is www.qphs.cheshire.sch.uk and to access uploaded work I think there’s a VLE section to click on. Alternatively, you might have a life of your own and be enjoying some sport, food, drink or music. ;-) I was expecting Navalmoral to be a very industrial and, frankly a bit dull town. How wrong preconceived ideas can be. The photos I took are on my Facebook page and my brother, who’s a very accomplished photographer, even put and ‘I like’ rating on it. Milagros has access to them and I’m sure she can let you see. One HUGE regret though is that I never got a picture of you guys. Maybe you could organise this some time and email me the pictures at school. The address is email@example.com We’ve got your individual ones from the penfriend letters you started (how’s that going btw? I do encourage you to write to your English counterparts at their secure school email addresses) but a group one is sadly lacking. I can’t wait to bring 40 Queen’s Park students over next June and now that I’ve met you, seen your school and the great staff who work there (this , of course includes your fabulous English Department personnel) I know it will be a great success. On behalf of everyone at my school, a big thank you once again for everything. I’m sending a Comprehension Worksheet consisting of 50 questions with an extended writing task to go with this tomorrow so I hope you have got your dictionaries at hand. (Yes – another joke… or ‘joke’ as my kids would say!) Best regards from a blazingly hot England Steve Walker
I found Steve’s letter very natural, written in a colloquial style and not too hard to understand… well, just a little. The first time we met Steve, I found him a very extroverted and funny person. He had a great sense of humor and I think he is the kind of person who enjoys laughing and making jokes. I enjoyed myself when I read his letter. I found what he said very interesting, even if I found it hard to understand what he was talking about some of the times. I also noticed that he used many colloquial words that I would like to learn. I would like to learn these words not just by reading his letter, but rather by having a full class about colloquial sentences and phrases that people in Britain or even in the US might use. María Marcos Vadillo
As he showed us in his stay in our high school, Steve Walker is a very pleasant and funny person. These characteristics are reflected on his words when describing the time he shared with us and showing his gratitude to us. He also talks us about the wonderful method we follow to learn English and how surprise he is at the great effort that we make every day to learn English. This gives us courage and strength to keep going. So when I read the letter, I felt really good because I have seen the recognition of my effort and the desire to meet people like Mr. Walker to learn from them because what I liked about him was his good sense of humor and his education. I'm looking forward to going to Chester to talk to him again and I’d like him to tell us more anecdotes and jokes! RAQUEL CARRETERO JUÁREZ
By reading the letter from Mr. Walker I can deduce that he had a fantastic time among us. He says we are doing a great job at school and he shows his enthusiasm because we seem to be making a great effort when it comes to learning his mother tongue. It is moving that someone recognizes our effort in relation to the PEL project, for this reason, I´d say “thank you” to you, Mr Walker, for your recognition and also “thank you” to Mila because we work like that because you encourage us. He says English teens don´t work like us because we have to deal with a wide range of subjects apart from English. In conclusion, Mr Walker is a great man and I have got the impression he would like to collaborate with us and of course we are willing to participate in what he suggests, for example, in relation to penfriends´ letters. RODRIGO ALONSO