Teaching in Barranquilla, Colombia is definitely a life changing experience, and gives you the opportunity to learn new cultures and languages, and immense yourself in one of the most magnificent destinations in the world. Home to world famous sites such as the colonial city of Cartagena and San Andres Islands, tourism in Colombia is rampant, and life outside the classroom is full of endless explorations of Spanish colonialism, lush expanses of the Rainforest.
Since tourism is a significant breadwinner for Colombia, locals and businesses realize the significant difference English competency can make in this sector, making it a great destination for beginner and seasoned teachers or simply anyone seeking a once in a lifetime experience. Colombians are generally extremely friendly and sociable people. It’s a country which is visited by a relatively low number of foreigners, and possibly
as a result of this, most Colombians will do their utmost to ensure you are
comfortable and feel welcome (“amañado”) in their country. By the virtue of
being a foreigner, you will receive interesting invitations.
Barranquilla is a modern city city. A number of shopping malls and hypermarkets (comparable to any USA mall) have sprung up around the city, all a short taxi ride from the apartments where you will be accommodated. The most recent is the Buenavista mall, which boasts a large branch of Exito supermarkets.
I was required to spend 12 hours a week teaching in the classroom. In addition, my
tasks involved holding drop-in sessions for students with queries, hosting a
conversation club, setting and marking exams, and lesson preparation.
I mentioned to the co-ordinator at Paulino Salgado that none of my students had no experience. I found the teachers at Paulino all very supportive. The students were also, on the whole, very keen to learn, interested in knowing about me and the rest of the American student's background.
During the 5 times I have visited Colombia with other volunteers I never had any sort of safety problem, although I did of course take certain precautions like staying away from any of the conflict zones.
I will continue to bring as many volunteers as I can. I love Colombia and its people.