FAQs

Answers to some of the more frequently asked questions from prospective participants:

Do I need to be fluent in Spanish to attend?

The seminar will be conducted entirely in Spanish. Participants must have a strong command of the language.

Who can attend?

The SYA Adult Enrichment seminars are open to all members of the "SYA family," as well as Spanish teachers from our sending schools. The only requirement is that you have a strong command of the Spanish language.

The Adult Enrichment seminar was originally designed as an opportunity for alumni to return in-country, practice their Spanish, re-connect with the SYA community and learn about something new. The assumption was that SYA Spain alums would be the ones interested; however, we soon discovered that there were other SYAers, who had studied in other countries, wanting to participate as well - even family and friends who hadn't done SYA at all. And what a great opportunity for Spanish teachers looking for a professional development in Spain. We have found that this mix of participants has greatly enriched the overall experience.

What do you recommend in terms of travel arrangements?

Zaragoza is conveniently located between Madrid and Barcelona, so you can easily fly into either city. Once in Madrid or Barcelona, Zaragoza is easily accessible by high-speed train; the trip takes approximately 90 minutes. Classes will be held on June 25 - June 29, 2018. You should plan to arrive in town in time for a welcoming reception dinner on the night of June 24 and plan to stay through the day on the 29th, as there will be class held.

Where do participants stay while in Zaragoza?

Most participants stay in a local hotel; however, we are happy to arrange a host family for you (for an additional fee) if you prefer.

Is there any advanced work that needs to be done?

No. We have had pre-seminar materials in the past, but have found that busy adults have enough on their plates just preparing for a week overseas without piling on homework.

If you are aching to get started, however, here are two book recommendations:

Mi último suspiro by Luis Buñuel (1982)

Bienvenido, Mister Cagada. Memorias caóticas de Luis García Berlanga by Jess Franco (2005)

Is there a discounted price for Member School teachers?

Yes, there is. Teachers from Member Schools receive a $500 discount off the the seminar fee.

Professional Development

Some common questions from teachers are:

Do you grant credit for the seminar? While you will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the seminar, we do not have an arrangement to grant professional development credit.
I really want to save a spot, but I have to wait until I know whether my school will contribute PD money. Send Whitney and email (whermann@sya.org), and she will talk this through with you. We realize that all schools function on slightly different calendars when it comes to approving PD funds.

What does a typical day look like?

While each summer brings with it some modifications depending on both the instructor and the content of the seminar, the traditional structure is as follows:

10-1:30 Class at the SYA school (with coffee break, claro)
LUNCH (on your own)
4:30-6:30 Class resumes either at the school or elsewhere as specified by instructor
An activity could be planned for as early as 7 or as late as 9...depends on the activity!

Planned activities are not required, but participants often find them interesting and a good way to get to know the other participants and practice their Spanish. Activities in the past have included: walking tours, wine tasting, "tapas crawl," museum visit and cooking class.

As the schedule above indicates, there are approximately 5 hours of class per day and plenty of time to squeeze in activities of your own choosing, such as riding a bike, visiting a monument, taking photographs, or perusing the shops. Zaragoza is a very easy city to explore, with a reasonably compact "downtown" and many rental bikes available.