My name is Ariel and I just spent eight months working as a language assistant teacher in Madrid, Spain. This vibrant city has so many ins and outs to it that practically anyone can find their niche. I will share a bit of my personal experience in moving to Madrid, my opinions on the ups and the downs, navigation via my Madrid Barrio Guide, and I’ll share the special bars, cafes, and such that my friends and I would frequent around the city.
I hail from the west coast of the US, born in Los Angeles and eventually moving up to the Willamette Valley in Oregon. I graduated from the University of Oregon in 2012, and trained as a yoga teacher at Freedom Yoga and Meditation in Eugene, OR.
I worked as an English teaching assistant through the program Auxiliares de Conversación, in Madrid.
All the information I have is from my personal experience and I am sharing my perspective in hopes that it is prove itself useful and interesting for you.
After graduating from The University of Oregon in 2013, I found out about a program called Auxiliares de Conversación in people can come to Spain to work as assistants to teachers in classrooms. The program is through the Spanish Ministry and open to native English speakers who have at least a Bachelors degree. Technically one doesn’t need to have any experience speaking Spanish, as the job requires that you speak strictly English with the students to immerse them, however, I would highly recommend that anyone applying for the Auxiliares program have at least a base level of communication skills. Spanish speaking comes in handy at times such as the program orientation, working your way through the visa process and foreigners office, opening a bank account, renting an apartment, setting up your Spanish phone, communicating with your coworkers and boss, and the list goes on. For anyone interested in the program, I recommend doing research online as there are many helpful blogs and posts about the process, such as the Young Adventuress, a wonderful blog written by an expat with loads of info on the program as well as on regions, payment, hours, etc.
There is also an infinitely helpful Auxiliares group on Facebook that I referred to throughout the year and really came in handy when maneuvering through Spanish bureaucracy and whenever Murphy´s Law played out. I cannot emphasize enough how life-saving this online community ended up being.