Life Changing Experience Of Becoming Bilingual
Start writing a post
Education

A Spanish Dictionary Wasn't Enough, My Life Changing Experience Of Becoming Bilingual

Because of my fluency in Spanish, I was able to experience a whole new culture and take part in life-changing opportunities.

79
A Spanish Dictionary Wasn't Enough, My Life Changing Experience Of Becoming Bilingual
Madison Robertson

When I signed up to take Spanish I in my freshman year of high school, I was only taking it because a language credit was a required class and I already knew how to say "hola". I had no interest in becoming fluent in Spanish but now that I am, I wouldn't have it any other way. I now am able to communicate with a whole new group of people and have familiarized myself with a culture that just four years ago, I knew nothing about.

Learning Spanish opened me up to so many opportunities and still continues to today.

Being able to speak Spanish with a native speaker and be complimented while doing so is an amazing feeling. My senior year of high school I had the chance to practice speaking with my Spanish teacher, fellow classmates, and my friends from Mexico. After doing this for a whole year I was prepared to go to Spain the following summer and talk with people who didn't know English. At first, it was very difficult because my host mom and the townsfolk in the quaint city of Salamanca spoke Spanish very fast and at times combined words together. I struggled at first but because of my previous practice, I caught on quickly and began speaking clearly and confidently. Some of my other friends had only taken one or two classes before enrolling in the program and were unable to hold a real conversation with the people they stayed with. It made me realize what a great decision learning Spanish was because it made the process of adapting to a new culture much more easy and enjoyable.

Spanish culture differs from U.S. culture in various ways but learning and then immersing myself in it was an unforgettable experience. I got to try all new types of food, operate on a different daily schedule and most significantly, speak a different language. Switching up your lifestyle every once in a while feels very refreshing and learning about aspects of a different culture can be fun and interesting because you're becoming more culturally aware. Not everyone has the same values, traditions, and beliefs, which is very eye-opening. I wouldn't have been fully exposed to this opportunity without becoming fluent in Spanish.

Traveling to Spain and studying abroad wasn't the only opportunity I have had due to my Spanish speaking ability. I also was a T.A. for a Spanish II class my junior year of high school. This gave me a ton of practice because I was constantly reviewing vocab, grading papers, and helping students one on one. I developed a great relationship with the teacher and learned strategies that helped struggling students learn and memorize vocabulary and grammar. At one point, the teacher let me teach a class which was very nerve-racking because I had to know what I was talking about and answers everyone's questions while the students stared at me with their big blank eyes.

After teaching and making a class and homework plan, I gained more confidence in myself because I taught them everything correctly and inspired some of them to become fluent in Spanish as well.

I now am taking Spanish classes at UNC Charlotte, in the Spanish club, and am planning on minoring in it as well. I have also been chosen to be an interpreter on a spring break community service trip to Puerto Rico. I could not see my life being half as great as it is.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Robert Bye on Unsplash

I live by New York City and I am so excited for all of the summer adventures.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

The invention of photography

The history of photography is the recount of inventions, scientific discoveries and technical improvements that allowed human beings to capture an image on a photosensitive surface for the first time, using light and certain chemical elements that react with it.

202456

The history of photography is the recount of inventions, scientific discoveries and technical improvements that allowed human beings to capture an image on a photosensitive surface for the first time, using light and certain chemical elements that react with it.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Exposing Kids To Nature Is The Best Way To Get Their Creative Juices Flowing

Constantly introducing young children to the magical works of nature will further increase the willingness to engage in playful activities as well as broaden their interactions with their peers

1651101

Whenever you are feeling low and anxious, just simply GO OUTSIDE and embrace nature! According to a new research study published in Frontiers in Psychology, being connected to nature and physically touching animals and flowers enable children to be happier and altruistic in nature. Not only does nature exert a bountiful force on adults, but it also serves as a therapeutic antidote to children, especially during their developmental years.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

1035149
Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

Breaking Down The Beginning, Middle, And End of Netflix's Newest 'To All The Boys' Movie

Noah Centineo and Lana Condor are back with the third and final installment of the "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" series

938117
Netflix

Were all teenagers and twenty-somethings bingeing the latest "To All The Boys: Always and Forever" last night with all of their friends on their basement TV? Nope? Just me? Oh, how I doubt that.

I have been excited for this movie ever since I saw the NYC skyline in the trailer that was released earlier this year. I'm a sucker for any movie or TV show that takes place in the Big Apple.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

4 Ways To Own Your Story, Because Every Bit Of It Is Worth Celebrating

I hope that you don't let your current chapter stop you from pursuing the rest of your story.

613344
Photo by Manny Moreno on Unsplash

Every single one of us has a story.

I don't say that to be cliché. I don't say that to give you a false sense of encouragement. I say that to be honest. I say that to be real.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

How Young Feminists Can Understand And Subvert The Internalized Male Gaze

Women's self-commodification, applied through oppression and permission, is an elusive yet sexist characteristic of a laissez-faire society, where women solely exist to be consumed. (P.S. justice for Megan Fox)

395373
Paramount Pictures

Within various theories of social science and visual media, academics present the male gaze as a nebulous idea during their headache-inducing meta-discussions. However, the internalized male gaze is a reality, which is present to most people who identify as women. As we mature, we experience realizations of the perpetual male gaze.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

It's Important To Remind Yourself To Be Open-Minded And Embrace All Life Has To Offer

Why should you be open-minded when it is so easy to be close-minded?

506328

Open-mindedness. It is something we all need a reminder of some days. Whether it's in regards to politics, religion, everyday life, or rarities in life, it is crucial to be open-minded. I want to encourage everyone to look at something with an unbiased and unfazed point of view. I oftentimes struggle with this myself.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments