Study Spanish in Latin America

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  • Peru is one of the world’s great travel destinations. However, despite the economic benefits generated by the international tourism industry in the area the majority of the local people live in either poverty or extreme poverty. For instance in Lima, and Cusco, there are a lot of children working on the streets. The older ones often have to take care of their younger siblings and are the first ones who drop out of school.

    AMAUTA Spanish School in Cusco has been organizing volunteer placements in Peru ever since its founding in 1998 and we are happy to connect local people and projects with our Spanish students, of which many are interested in give a helping hand as a volunteer. AMAUTA not only organizes the volunteer placements itself but offers complete programs for volunteers– including Spanish classes in Cusco, accommodation in our Student and Volunteer House or with local guest families, and we organize cheap and fun tours in Cusco. And – most important – AMAUTA does not only support the volunteers, but also the projects in Cusco, in different ways. Are you interested? Many volunteer projects in Cusco need you and through your booking, AMAUTA can support the projects even more!

    Volunteer Work in Cusco Peru with streetkids!

    The project for street kids in the city centre of Cusco is one of those organizations that benefit greatly from the participation of volunteers! Thanks to the help of many AMAUTA volunteers, the kids in this project can be a child for a couple of hours, and play, learn, do their homework, learn some English, enjoy recreational activities and maybe even enjoy a small meal at the end of the day. Through your volunteer work in Peru, AMAUTA can support this project to help around 25 street kids that are working on the streets of Cusco, selling sweets, postcards etc. on the streets, or work as a shoe-shiner.

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    Now that you are living and studying Spanish, or doing volunteer work in Buenos Aires, you might be willing to go to the next level within the Buenos Aires transport system and travel by bus (or colectivo as they are called)…. If so,  here are some do’s and don’ts you have to keep in mind.

    The way to go...#2(the do's and don’ts on colectivos on Buenos Aires)

    Do’s

    • Do buy a Guia-T upon arrival in Buenos Aires. It’s a small and cheap booklet you can buy at any news stand (kiosko) that will help you figure out where you are and which bus gets you from A to B. This site is very helpful in figuring out the way to read Guia-T.
    • Once you’ve figured out which bus to take you still have to find the bus stop that is closest to you. You can ask around but not everybody can help you because there are thousands of stops. The best way to find out is to check online here. Just give your place of origin and destination and choose your route. This site is a must if you don’t have a Guia-T by the way.
    • Ask for monedas whenever you receive a 2-peso or 5-peso bill. People will reluctantly give it to you, as everybody understands the need for coins in Buenos Aires. You cannot travel by bus without coins*.
    • Do stand in line at the bus stop. Everybody does and together you create a nice orderly line amongst the chaos.
    • Wave franticly if you see your bus coming. It sounds silly but please do because otherwise the bus will pass you by. And if the bus can’t reach your stop because of taxi’s or other buses standing in the way, make a run for it, otherwise you will have to wait for the next bus.
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    Putting Spanish to Use… in Kindergarten!

    I spent six weeks volunteering in Cusco at an organisation that works to contribute to improving the quality of life of children, teenagers and families living in extreme poverty, promoting the development of important life skills and encouraging them to realize their potential.

    I volunteered there from March 28th until May 6th, and it was a wonderful six weeks. My volunteer coordinator from AMAUTA gave me two options as to how I would like to work – either in the mornings with children aged between 3 and 5 years, or in the afternoons with children ranging all the way from 5 to 17 years. I decided to work in the mornings, and was assigned to the class of 5 year olds, and my working hours were 9am-1pm.

    Putting Spanish to Use. in Kindergarten!

    The morning program is seen as more than just a kindergarten. It is referred to as an “Early Stimulation Program”, and the children are given structured lessons and homework. The range of abilities of the children in my class was enormous! While some of the children could read and write relatively proficiently for their ages, others were not even able to count to five. However all the children tried their best and the teacher would cater the work to suit all the differing needs of the children. During the period in which I volunteered the children learnt about body parts, figures and numbers. It was also great for me to develop the vocabulary I had learnt in my Spanish classes!

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    Spanish Student at AMAUTA Buenos Aires

       Matthew Benwell (UK, 28 years):

    Spanish Student at AMAUTA Buenos Aires "AMAUTA Spanish school in Buenos Aires offers a great environment to learn Spanish. The teachers were extremely friendly and approachable and balanced the classes with an adequate mix of conversation and Spanish grammar. Furthermore, the Spanish lessons were varied (including literature, drama, role-play and more) and pitched at the right level and included teachers from different countries in Latin America, enabling me to understand different accents and forms of Spanish. The additional activities (which included walking tours of the city, tango classes and visits to prominent museums in the city) encouraged me to learn much more about Argentina outside of the classroom and were a great way to get to know the other students. For an allround Spansih language- and cultural-learning experience, I would definitely recommend AMAUTA."

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