Teaching Experience: 25 years
Courses: Business English (including presentations, role plays, telephone English), IELTS and TOEFL preparation, Cambridge exams (PET, FCE, CAE, CPE), Conversational English
— Cambridge England Certificate of Secondary Education — Chesterton Community College
— Certificate of Cambridge Proficiency in English (Grade A) — Chesterton Community College
My name is Alfredo but my friends and students call me Freddie.
I was born and raised in Cambridge, England where I spent the first 28 years of my life. I am a native English speaker. I also speak Spanish fluently thanks to my parents who come from Spain. In my free time I enjoy being around my family and friends, reading and contact with nature. I am also a very keen photographer. I love animals and live with two dogs.
MY TEACHING EXPERIENCE
I have been teaching English for over 25 years now. Here is a record of my teaching experience. All of my experience has been in Spain.
TRINITY COLLEGE SCHOOL OF ENGLISH, A CORUÑA, SPAIN
English teacher for Primary and Secondary school children. Preparing students for TRINITY COLLEGE OF LONDON exams through the academy. I was teaching all levels but especially young learners of English. Organising and participating in extra school activities for children and young learners through games and theatre in English. Supporting classes for exam preparation for Primary and Secondary school students. Tutor and teacher of English summer camp activities for children.
ACADEMIA NUMANCIA, A CORUÑA, SPAIN
English teacher for university students preparing state entry examinations to pursue military careers in the Spanish armed forces. I was preparing students for different forces and disciplines. They included Spanish Civil guard, Professional soldier and Police force. English was one of many subjects included in the syllabus.
OPENING ENGLISH SCHOOL, MAJADAHONDA, SPAIN
I was employed as an English tutor and trained in the OPENING METHOD of teaching. Most of the students were professional people who had contracted courses with the school with different periods of duration. Teaching through ROLEPLAYS, DEBATES for more advaned learners. Debate classes would include small groups of say 5 students with a topic chosen by the teacher to debate as a group. Students could also choose WRITING, READING, LISTENING and VOCABULARY classes as an extra support to the courses they had chosen.
BERLITZ SCHOOL OF LANGUAGES, MADRID, SPAIN
Trained as a teacher in the direct method which is what the Berlitz method basically involves. Once I had received my initial training I was teaching professional and business people at companies in and around the city of Madrid. As I spoke fluent Spanish I also had some experience at teaching Spanish to Americans and British people who lived in Madrid.
INSTITUTO HISPANO FRANCÉS, ALCALÁ DE HENARES, SPAIN
Through the academy I worked at several companies in and around Madrid offering presential classes to business and professional people. The classes were in company. Mid sized group classes of 5 to 8 students in each group. Some of the companies I had the experience of teaching at were: UNIVERSAL MC CANN, an advertising agency based in the centre of Madrid. CIL, a mail order company also based in Madrid.
I became a self employed teacher and started working through Englishjet, an agency which offered me and supplied me with classes in and around Madrid. Some of the companies I had the experience of teaching at were: TELEFONICA S.A. A Spanish multinational telecommunications company headquartered in Madrid, Spain. It is one of the largest telephone operators and mobile network providers in the world. I was teaching group presential classes for Managerial staff. Each of the students in the group also had TELEPHONE classes with me once a week as part of the support to their course. LASTMINUTE.COM GROUP, a publicly traded multinational Group in the online travel industry. I started teaching here just after 2006 when the company had just been founded and was fortunate enough to have had the experience of seeing them grow as a corporation all those years up until 2018. My classes were all Presential and my students were Spanish and Italian learners of English. EULEN, a security services company based in Madrid Spain. My classes were also directed towards Managerial staff and young professionals who needed English for their posts and work. The classes were slightly more catered for basic business needs like Presentations, Meetings and Negotiations as well as Social everyday English. LIBERTY INSURANCE, an insurance company based in Madrid Spain. My classes were only for top Managerial staff so I was teaching on a one to one basis here. The classes were based more on Fluency and Conversation as well as some specific Vocabulary needed by learners for their business meetings and telephone conversations. ALTRAN, a services Consultancy group based in Madrid, Spain. Classes were presential and also for very specific Managerial staff who needed English for their business and work. HUSQVARNA, a garden tools machinery company with a subsidiary in Madrid, Spain. I started teaching managers there on a one to one basis and then as the demand for classes grew ended up with some other groups of all levels for everyday social English. Classes were sometimes directed towards the practice of Meetings in English as some of the employees would have to travel to Sweden on a regular basis for international meetings.
I completed my Certificate of Secondary Education CSE at Chesterton Community College Cambridge England. I attended night school as an adult at Chesterton community College to study for my PROFICIENCY in English. Obtained a GRADE in Proficiency.
In later years I became a teacher of MEDITATION at VAJRAYANA MEDITATION CENTRE, MAJADAHONDA, SPAIN. I was a voluntary helper at the centre and became teacher after a few years. I was also on the centre´s teacher training programme for a number of years.
MY TEACHING METHODS
I try to adapt all my classes to the needs and specific needs that each student may have. Understanding that each person is an individual and has a different pace and capacity for learning as well as different objectives in mind my main role as a tutor is first of all to discover this. Once this is established I am then able to create a study plan and lesson planification both for short term and longer term objectives. I would say my main role as a teacher is to help students enjoy their learning experience as this is one of the key ingredients for better learning. My main focus is on Fluency and Communication so my classes are primarily Conversation based. Using Communication as the main teaching tool allows me to see where students are having difficulties and then I am more able to focus on those areas together with the student and offer them ideas and suggestions so as to improve on them..
Roleplays offer students typical social English situations in which they can practise a particular scenario which they may find themselves in everyday situations. These can be anything from A VISIT TO THE DENTIST to MAKING A RESERVATION ONLINE. These can also be used in BUSINESS TYPE SITUATIONS like Negotiations or Meetings.
In order to help learners of English become more confident when taking or making a call. Sometimes one of the biggest fears students have is not knowing what to say if they do not understand what the person is saying on the other end. I try and offer some techniques in which learners can apply when having to deal with these situations as well as the practice of the vocabulary that is required for each particular type of call.
A drill is the repetition of a particular structure or word that is introduced into the learning process. In order to learn this I try and create a drill which is a short conversation between the teacher and student in which I put the student in a situation where he or she has to repeat the new structure or word and therefore gain some practice through the repetition process. Repetition is a proven method of learning as it familiarizes us with the structure and allows it to filter into our new acquired language. Once this happens it will eventually become part of our new repertoire and natural language.
TOPIC BASED CONVERSATION
Topic conversation is an excellent way of becoming more fluent when speaking. I usually ask the student what topics he or she might like to talk about just to get a general idea. It is always best to choose topics that are familiar to students so as not to make the conversation too difficult. I always adapt to the level of the student. Then some key words are introduced around that topic. An introduction is made by the teacher by asking some questions or speaking for a minute or two about the topic. Then a debate takes place in which the student and teacher try to get information from each other by asking each other questions and expressing their views on the topic.
I am sure some of you have been in a situation in which you have at some stage been asked to give a small talk or present something in English to a group of people. There is a method for doing this which I offer students at all levels. Once students become familiar with this method they will be able to give talks to groups. Whether it is a SALES PRESENTATION or A TALK about travelling in a particular country. The method is really the same. I help students by showing them how to use this method to be able to do this and after practising this and repeating it they will be able to give their talks successfully. Presentations are also an excellent method for TOPIC BASED CONVERSATION as the structure is the same when we are introducing a topic for the first time and want to get our listeners interested in it.
I help students prepare for examinations. PET, FIRST CERTIFICATE, ADVANCED and PROFICIENCY. TRINITY COLLEGE OF LONDON EXAMS B1, B2, C1, C2 up to advanced. TEFL. TOEFL. At present I have some students who are preparing for TRINITY COLLEGE OF LONDON and I am working on the SPEAKING AND LISTENING part of the exam with them online.
THE USE OF TEXTS FOR READING, PRONUNCIATION AND SPEAKING
This is another area and method I use especially for students preparing TRINITY COLLEGE OF LONDON. Reading short texts is an excellent way of becoming familiar with a particular topic. I guide students and encourage them to find short texts on a particular topic for their conversation class. In the class both student and teacher take turns in READING THE TEXT OUT LOUD. This helps the student with INTONATION and PRONUNCIATION. The student will have read the text at least ONCE before the class so as to become familiar with it and also to have PREPARED SOME QUESTIONS to ask the teacher about the text so as to OPEN the conversation on the topic. This has proved to work well with a lot of my students as it gives them the opportunity to put into practice READING ALOUD to an audience, and INTRODUCING A TOPIC.
There are some exercises I use to help students to become familiar with SOUNDS in English. First I introduce the VOWEL sound and give some examples of where this sound comes from by using some WORDS as an example. Here the objective is to REPEAT and REPEAT. I just ask the student to copy me in most cases. Once that sound is being pronounced correctly and after using some DRILLS I then get some SENTENCES in which that sound appears again and again. There are also some basic rules I use to help students know what words are STRESSED words and NON STRESSED WORDS. This helps with the INTONATION and STRESS TIMING of the language. English is a STRESS TIMED LANGUAGE not a SYLLABIC LANGUAGE. By learning which words are stressed and non stressed students will become more aware of the TIMING of the language which will help them in both SPEAKING and READING ALOUD.
HOW I WORK
The way I conduct online classes is as follows. I always send my students an email before their class which explains in detail THE CLASS PLANIFICATION. This gives students a description of the class as a whole. What is needed for that class in terms of materials, what is going to be practiced and how it is going to be done. It divides the class into parts so students know exactly how each class is going to evolve. This gives them time beforehand to become familiar with the class structure so they know what to expect when they meet their teacher online. At the end of the class the student is given FEEDBACK on the class and I give some tips so the student can see which areas he or she needs to work on more etc. I then talk about the next class and how we can prepare for that. What the student can practice at home in the meantime and how to do that. The idea is that classes have a CONTINUITY. This is also important in the general learning process.