Hola! Welcome to the AMAUTA Spanish Schools blog!
At our Spanish Schools in Cusco and Buenos Aires, we provide the best Spanish courses and cultural immersion experiences for our students. We encourage our students to step outside of the Spanish classroom, to enjoy the local culture, make Spanish-speaking friends, and travel in Peru and Argentina. During or after finishing your Spanish course, we greatly encourage participation in our volunteer program in Cusco or Buenos Aires, where you will really get the chance to practice and improve your Spanish language skills and give back to local community.
Here at our AMAUTA blog, we aim to keep you posted about what is happening out our Spanish schools, as well as what´s going on in and around the cities of Cusco and Buenos Aires. We´ll also post fun articles about Peruvian and Argentinian culture, cuisine, local fiestas, what to see in Cusco, & where to go in Buenos Aires, etc.
We´ll include advice about which weekend excursions to sign up for and which free cultural activities are available. And after reading our section of student reports, you´ll know exactly why you want to study Spanish at AMAUTA in Cusco and Buenos Aires.
Argentines love to talk. You must have noticed, while you study Spanish in Buenos Aires.
When or with who? They don’t care. If you’ve studied Spanish in other countries before, like I did, you’ll also discover that Argentines use many other words and slang while communicating in Spanish.
To make it even more difficult, porteños (the residents of Buenos Aires) pronounce words differently. However, I can ensure you that you’ll pick it up quickly, this Argentine Spanish. To give you a helping hand, read Spanish in Buenos Aires: 10 typical Argentine words. (more…)
Getting to know and to live the Argentine culture might be one of the goals during your stay in Buenos Aires besides improving your Spanish language skills. There is one thing you need to know before immersing yourself in Argentine culture; Argentines use a lot of sign language while conversing. When studying Spanish in Argentina, you won’t just learn the Spanish spoken language, you will also learn to interpret the “sign language’. And if you end up staying in Argentina long enough, you might even start using it yourself. Knowing about sign language might help you make new friends or communicating with your host family.
Argentines use their hands continuously to express themselves. For every emotion there is a particular gesture. In this blog we will inform you about the most import signs.
When you come from a small town like I do where there are no buildings taller than 5 stories, no buses and no subway, the thought of going to a city as big as Buenos Aires to learn Spanish in Argentina was a little intimidating. However, when I got here, everyone at the Spanish School was so nice and inviting that I immediately felt welcomed. Also, having never lived in a city before, I was a little intimidated by the thought of having to figure out how to take the subte (metro) and having to find my way around.
I quickly found out that it is very easy to navigate around Buenos Aires. And if I don´t know how to get somewhere, there is always someone willing to patiently listen to me try and explain in Spanish where I am trying to go, and then give me directions. And when asking one of the staff members at AMAUTA, everyone is willing to help me get where I need to go, and have a good time doing it.
Brandon from NYC tells us his story
Brandon Sloan is a 29-year-old volunteer from New York City who has come to Cusco to make something meaningful of his travels to Peru. His volunteer experience at AMAUTA Spanish School has been fun, enjoyable and interesting as he works with kids at an after-school program. Each day from 2:00 to 4:30 he helps the Peruvian children with their homework, plays with them, and answers their many questions about how to say Spanish words in English.
“I had always wanted to do volunteer work outside of my country. It thought it would be really interesting to see how people work and live, and I also wanted to get to know another country in a different way. I choose Argentina and I wanted to spend time in Buenos Aires as a resident and not only as a tourist or Spanish student only. Moreover, I wanted to have new experiences and try to help other people that need support in their life. AMAUTA/Elebaires in Buenos Aires gave me this opportunity and offered me a placement at an organization where I would be volunteering for six months. Not all students and volunteers here in Buenos Aires stay that long, there are also short term volunteer placements in Argentina.
I worked at a home for women with children that live in the street in the neighborhood of Nuñez in Buenos Aires. Approximately twenty women and forty children live there with a few nuns that take care of the mothers. The women stay for a year while looking for a job and a place to live. The home looks like a convent, it is spacious and there is a patio with a small kids´ park. Next to the home, there is a kids´ garden, that also forms part of the shelter.
Pablo Neruda stated that “volunteering has the property of bringing people together in fraternal and cooperative work “. This fraternal and cooperative work, the Chilean poet refers to, we saw through a group of 9 young students (3 boys and 6 girls) that arrived in Cusco on January 3 and supported several volunteer projects of AMAUTA Spanish School in the city of Cusco.
The first organization that got support from these young people was a clinic that provides medical and rehabilitation services, which is under the direction of a religious order. In this clinic the volunteers helped with different activities such as feeding children, assist them in personal hygiene, to help them with their activities of painting and drawing, take a walk, and finally engage in recreational leisure activities.
As I studied Spanish in Spain for almost a year before my stay in Buenos Aires, I speak Spanish with a “Spanish” accent.
When choosing where to do my internship, I chose Argentina. I had always been curious about the Argentine culture and I would be immersed in good, clear and slow Spanish, that’s what I thought. The moment I arrived in Buenos Aires, I realized how wrong I was! I arrived to a country with a totally different “Spanish”, not clear, good and slow at all! As a way of surviving and out of interested – I started to analyze the Argentine Spanish most Argentine people are so proud off. And now I love it too!
One of the major causes of the different Spanish is the history of the country: except for the Spanish immigrants, in Argentina mainly Italian immigrants arrived, millions of them. And all those immigrants created their own “Spanish”, a kind of “Spatalian”. That’s how the Spanish language of the conquistadores was turned into that new language, with that typical ‘Argentine sound’.