Tuesday, October 31, 2006

English Practice Over the Internet

This week I have been playing with Skype (www.skype.com) a lot!
Specially with its Skypecast feature. It's a great way to get to know people and have conversations/discussions with people from around the world!

I have also joined a group of people interested in improving their English and helping others to do the same. They have a weekly skypecast called "English Practice Over the Internet". You can find more info by clicking here

I have been experimenting with my own English Practice skypecasts and I must say I like them a lot. After all I was studying to be a teacher of English when I was living in Argentina. My English is not perfect but I think it's pretty good. Well, at least good enough to help those who are just starting to learn English. I might do them more frequently when I have more free time.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

IWLA 2006

I love conferences! Specially if they are Language Conferences. This month I am participating (and presenting) in two.

IWLA, October 6 and 7

and MCTLC, October 19 and 20

This weekend at IWLA I had a lot of fun, as usual. Mainly because I got to spend time with my good friends from El Lago del Bosque (Concordia Language Villages). Together we like to present a dance session called "Bailemos Juntos". Another reason that added to the fun is that I presented my one-man-show "The Adventures of Don Quixote" to all the teachers. It was the entertainment piece at Friday reception. It was so much fun to do this show for adults! It was very well received and I got lots of compliments! I might do "Paper Boats" next year!

In two weeks I will be doing "Bailemos Juntos" by myself at MCTLC. Fun!

My fingers hurt!!

My fingers hurt. I haven't been hammering on them.. or doing some intensive labor. They are not frozen from the very cold Minnesotan winter yet...

They hurt because I have started to play the guitar again. And I say again because I took some guitar lessons when I was a kid... Hm... 10 or 12 may be? Anyway... I was never very good with the guitar but I decided I needed to go back to it.

It all started with the songs I do in my Spanish clases at Spring Hill Waldorf School. Songs like Guantanamera o La Bamba sound a little dull if you don't have some instrument to accompany them. I have tried with some shakers or maracas before but it's not the same. I needed to get back to the guitar.

I am a lefty -meaning left-handed person...I am not stating my politival views here :-)
When I was a child and I was taking guitar lessons I used to have the strings in reverse order of the regular guitars. This I could do the chords with my right hand and the stroke with my left hand.

This time I wanted to try something different and challenge myself. I bought a cheap beginner guitar and I didn't change the strings. I had this idea that I should learn to play with a regular guitar so that I could play with any guiter everywhere I go. I tried very hard to learn to do the chords with my left hand. It was very very hard...and I got discouraged and stopped practising after a while.

About a week ago I had the realization that all I wanted was to accompany my songs with the guitar and nothing else. Besides it's not like I go to dozens of parties or meetings were there is a guitar and I have the opportunity to play it.

Mr. Jansen, our first grade teacher helped me last Monday to change the strings in my guitar and gave me a 30 minutes crash course. I was pumped! My right hand immediately started to remember some of the chords. When I got home all I could do was practice with the guitar and look online for the chords for the songs I wanted to play.

This practice was interrupted by my trip to Iowa this weekend, but today I played my guitar again and I was able to do (in an almost acceptable form) "Zamba de mi esperanza". I beautiful dance/song from Argentina. May be I will post a song or two in the future... I have to practice way more!