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About Me

¡Hola! I am María Blanco, founder of For LEARNING SPANISH, Senior Lecturer in Spanish at the University of Westminster, and Teacher Trainer at the Instituto Cervantes London.


I was inspired to set up For Learning Spanish in 2015 after several years of seeing the excellent results that came from teaching language learning strategies to my students at the University of Westminster. A few hours of coaching made all the difference: I saw significant improvements in students’ motivation, learning pace, self-confidence, and enjoyment. I got excellent feedback from them as well.

 
I also noticed that language teachers were very receptive in the presentations and workshops where I was sharing my experience of teaching language learning strategies to students.

 
Setting up For LEARNING SPANISH has allowed me to share my knowledge and passion for effective language learning with students and teachers from many different backgrounds and countries. And the results remain consistently high: students and teachers significantly improve their language learning/teaching skills and feel more positive as a result of the coaching and training.

 

More recently, I have published most of what I have understood about language learning strategies in my book "SMART Ways for Learning SPANISH." 

 
The desire to write the book grew from my passion for empowering language students and for helping teachers to empower their students. The book draws on my more than 20 years of teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language, my research in applied linguistics and cognitive psychology, and my own experience as a language student. It contains the strategies I wish had been taught to me when I started learning foreign languages! I hope you find the book interesting and useful too.

I was inspired to set up For Learning Spanish in 2015 after several years of seeing the excellent results that came from teaching language learning strategies to my students at the University of Westminster. A few hours of coaching made all the difference: I saw significant improvements in students’ motivation, learning pace, self-confidence, and enjoyment. I got excellent feedback from them as well.


I also noticed that language teachers were very receptive in the presentations and workshops where I was sharing my experience of teaching language learning strategies to students.


Setting up For LEARNING SPANISH has allowed me to share my knowledge and passion for effective language learning with students and teachers from many different backgrounds and countries. And the results remain consistently high: students and teachers significantly improve their language learning/teaching skills and feel more positive as a result of the coaching and training.

 
More recently, I have published most of what I have understood about language learning strategies in my book "SMART Ways for Learning SPANISH." 


 The desire to write the book grew from my passion for empowering language students and for helping teachers to empower their students. The book draws on my more than 20 years of teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language, my research in applied linguistics and cognitive psychology, and my own experience as a language student. It contains the strategies I wish had been taught to me when I started learning foreign languages! I hope you find the book interesting and useful too.

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Professional Experience and Qualifications


Below is a brief summary of my professional experience and qualifications.


In the past few years, I have coached and trained language students and teachers in the UK, Spain, and Germany. Before joining the University of Westminster and the Instituto Cervantes London, I worked for many years as a Spanish Teacher and Examiner in British and Spanish educational institutions and business organisations.


I gained my BA (Hons) in Education at the Universidad Pontificia de Salamanca (Spain), and later completed an MA in Modern Languages in Education at the University College of London Institute of Education (UK). I am also a certified Spanish Language Teacher and Online Tutor (International House), Teacher Trainer (EUROLTA), DELE Examiner (Instituto Cervantes London), and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA). I have been trained in language learning strategies at the University of Minnesota and in coaching skills at The Coaching Academy.

You can find further information in my  LinkedIn page