We are a small language academy located in Spain dedicated to immersing people in the culture of a city we love, Seville.
Through our company Language for Life, we organize cultural programs including visits to the main monuments and museums as part of our Spanish classes. We find that seeing and doing things in the city complements the formal Spanish courses we hold in the classroom. During our programs, we conducted a series of short interviews with some participants and this is what they shared with us.
1. Some people wonder if it is too late to start learning an additional language like Spanish when you are not so young.
It is never too late, according to Donna Seifert, 71 (Santa Fe, NM):
No, no, no! Because in adulthood, one finally has time to attend classes, knows why she wants to speak another language and has the courage and patience to listen to another language. Yes, it might be harder to remember new words and verb conjugations than when you were 20 years old. However, for young adults, studying a language is a task. In maturity, it is a new way to communicate with others and to explore different ways of seeing the world. Yes, it is more difficult for me to remember words, uses of verbs, prepositions, and aspects of grammar of a language with roots in Latin. The truth is, I don't like exercises. And I don't like to make mistakes. However, the most important thing for me is the opportunity to communicate with those who do not speak English in Santa Fe, like the market vendors, the woman who paints the plates and tiles, the Quechua woman who makes traditional baskets—and speaks Spanish as a second language too. Yes, the fight continues. And yes, I can help and support Spanish speakers in the court of justice.
Donna volunteers in an association called Esperanza in Santa Fe in New Mexico where she supports women who have suffered domestic violence. Most of them speak Spanish as a mother tongue.
The best part is to be physically and mentally active, according to Rosemary, 73 (Newport, ME):
The short answer is no, it is never too late to learn a language like Spanish. Learning a new language is beneficial for our health at so many levels. Being a life-long learner is a good way to avoid dementia, Alzheimer's diseases and to keep our brain and memory active. Spanish speakers contribute to the learning process, the teachers, the market and store vendors, they all make a difference. Thanks to patience and corrections, I learn new words—and most importantly I learned new aspects of life. Living and taking Spanish classes in Seville was an active processes, conversations, reading books, visiting interesting places, trying the delicious dishes at a local marketplace transformed the way I defined myself as a tourist. The best was living in a place where you can see, hear, and speak the language.
2. Tell us about your experience after visiting Spain.
Being part of the culture and not a mere spectator makes all the difference, according to Anne Williams, 74 (Portland, OR):
Taking Spanish Communication Classes at Language for Life Academy can be much more than being a passive tourist who visits the typical places and returns home. In fact, this year I’ll return to visit the city that gives me so much joy, the beautiful city of Seville.
Learning is a way of life, according to Jennifer, 68:
Thanks to my interest in the Spanish language and culture I have travelled to different countries in the world. My last trip to Seville met all the goals: explore the city on foot, exercise my memory, have good relationships, make new friends, I learned new things about myself and got to know me better. I have reached the conclusion that every time I travel, my experience improves significantly because I am able to be part of the culture and not just a mere spectator.
For those of you interested in travelling solo to Seville, here are some tips:
Overall, Seville is a beautiful and vibrant city that's perfect for people over 50 who want to explore the history and culture of Spain. With its friendly locals, impressive architecture and delicious cuisine, Seville is sure to be an unforgettable trip.
Learn more about signing up for a program, or email us at email@example.com for more information.