Thursday, April 3, 2014

Notes from Laura's Students

I have studied Spanish with Laura Olachea for 150+ hours over the past three years.  She is a gem. Laura is intellectually cultivated and impeccably credentialed.  She is creative, experienced, and astute as a teacher--not to mention relentless in instantly correcting every last mistake I utter in Spanish.  Fortunately, Laura is also funny, warm, and engaging, so we laugh a lot, even when I´m murdering the language (which isn't all that often now, thanks to her).  I should also mention that a friend of mine just returned from a trip to Cuernavaca (late 2009). Private instruction there costs more than twice Laura´s rate.  She´s also more than competitive with her counterparts in Oaxaca.  As Laura states elsewhere on this website, she works with you to develop a personalized curriculum that focuses attention where you want it focused. And she hosts frequent gatherings at her place where students can mingle. That way you can connect with others and be part of a virtual student body, even though you?re receiving private instruction. Every year I vow to vist other parts of Mexico--and every year I end up in Oaxaca studying with Laura.  Laura has a cat named Chispita, which means, more or less, "Little Sparky."  Actually, I think that should be Laura´s nickname, since not only does she light up her classroom, she also makes sure that you get a charge out of learning Spanish.  So what in God´s name are you waiting for?   Peter von York, California, USA

What a delight it was to find Laura! I have been studying Spanish for about 5 years and this was my 5th trip down to México to travel and study. Laura is enthusiastic, organized, patient, and experienced. And to top this off she has a great sense of humor. It´s obvious that she loves her work and cares about her students. I looked forward to my lessons every day and would return to Oaxaca to study with Laura in a heartbeat.
Susan Hall, health educator, California, USA

I have been studying with Laura Olachea since 2006.  During that time my Spanish has improved significantly.  As a former ESL teacher, I really appreciate her knowledge, professionalism and enthusiasm.  I would recommend her without hesitation.  Patricia Parsons

I have studied Spanish with Laura Olachea for four years. My stay in Oaxaca is generally three weeks. Due to Laura?s teaching methods, I can now converse easily with Oaxaquenos. Since I have minimal opportunity to speak Spanish at home, I have to maximize my study time in Oaxaca. Laura challenges me and corrects my spoken Spanish in a manner that?s instructive, but does not stop the flow of the conversation. My fluency improves with each lesson.  Laura is a creative and energetic teacher. Oaxaca has much to offer: ruins, colonial architecture, markets, artisans, and great food. I, however, return to Oaxaca each year primarily to study Spanish with Laura Olachea.Linda Tuxbury, Polson, MT

I had the good luck to work with Laura for several months during my last stay in Oaxaca, and I can’t wait to get back there to continue my Spanish lessons with her. I really can’t imagine a better tutor. Laura is always warm, welcoming, and full of energy and good humor. She loves teaching Spanish, and it shows. She is very flexible--adept at designing an overall lesson plan and crafting individual sessions that are perfectly matched to one’s needs and wishes. I think it would be fair to describe her as a master teacher of Spanish, someone who is able to bring out the very best in students from beginners to those who are nearly fluent. Laura jet-propelled my progress in Spanish, and made it fun. I’m willing to bet she’ll do the same for you.  Robert Adler, Santa Rosa, CA

"What luck I found Laura by chance while I spent a delightful month in Oaxaca City. A big part of the reason my stay was "delightful" was because I found Laura to be my teacher.  Laura doesn’t just teach you Spanish. She treats you  as one of "hers".  She takes a lot of pleasure in finding what it is you want to learn and does all she can to give it to you.  Laura is outgoing, friendly and sooooo good-natured.  After only a few lessons with her, I was invited to a Rosca de Reyes  party she gave for all her students at that time, just after Christmas.  She exudes such enthusiasm and excitement for everything she does and gives to her students.  She is well-educated, loves languages and literature; and if you want, she’ll give you lots of feedback to correct your grammar, pronunciation, or other aspects of Spanish that you’re struggling with."...Jane Montgomery Arlington VA

I've been studying Spanish for 12 years, starting in my local adult education center, then later a private tutor, and then many weeks in schools in Mexico. I met Laura while vacationing in Oaxaca some years ago and immediately began Skype lessons with her. When I started studying with Laura, my Spanish vocabulary was good, and I knew all the rules, but I just couldn't speak it easily. My lesson plan had one major goal: become fluent. With Laura's tutoring, I am now able to carry on a conversation on just about any subject, being able to speak and understand without trouble. Yes, I still make mistakes. Some day, I'll feel comfortable with the subjunctive and not have to think about the conjugation. I strongly recommend studying with Laura to anyone who wants to learn Spanish! Phil Sego, Cambridge, MA

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