I’m Maddy, a 25 year old from the UK/Dublin who loves dogs and desserts. I had the opportunity to live and work in the Yucatán peninsula of Mexico last year and I absolutely loved it, from the food (especially panuchos and sopa de lima) to the culture, the people, the colours and even the 40 degree heat with no air conditioning. I am fluent in Spanish and French and have lived in France and Spain as well. I absolutely love learning and speaking foreign languages and I miss being able to practice them. I only speak a tiny bit of Portuguese but I’m getting free classes now thanks to the brasileiros in Citas J. As well as other languages, I love experiencing different cultures and ways of life and that’s why travelling is another love of mine.
How would you describe your teaching style at Citas?
I would say my teaching style is very friendly and relaxed and is all about the rapport I have with my students. I think if there’s a fun and relaxed atmosphere in class it makes for a better learning environment. Making students laugh is always an aim of mine in class.
What is the story with the object that you have choose?
The Frida doll in the picture was bought for me by a Mexican friend when I lived in Mexico. Frida is obviously a feminist icon of Mexico and her artwork is beautiful but the doll is special to me because it’s wearing a traditional Mayan dress which I saw many older Mayan ladies wearing around Mérida (the city I called home for almost a year) and in the villages on the outskirts of town. So she represents Mexico as a country, which means a lot to me, but also the Mayan heritage of the area where I lived.
Can you tell us a funny story about yourself?
I am unfortunately a little bit clumsy and forgetful and students may have noticed me dropping whiteboard pens and bits of paper everywhere. They’re always very kind and help me pick things up but it can get a little embarrassing when it happens so often. The other day I was in a Vietnamese restaurant and I was squeezing a lime into some soup and it slipped and went flying into a plant pot next to where another lady was eating. She nearly jumped out of her chair and I had to apologise with a red face.
Which was the best compliment that you have received in class?
The best compliment I have received in class was that I was a great teacher and that I made classes really enjoyable. Those kind of comments and feedback make my job worthwhile. It’s also lovely when you come back after being off and students are happy to see you and say that they missed you. And when your student remembers that you love pão de queijo and buys you one at break time!