Recently, guest speaker Jorge Perez joined Mrs. Chute’s Spanish classes to discuss his lifelong passion for learning languages.
When asked by a student why he choose to learn eight languages, Mr. Perez replied,
“Why not? I’ve learned to start looking at life this way. Languages open opportunities in every single aspect of your life. In every single facet of your life. You are able to engage in different cultures, open yourself up to new experiences, the opportunity to make new connections, more friends. When you learn a new language, it really is teaching you how to think and experience the world in an entirely new way.”
Mr. Perez grew up in Mexico, his mother was from Spain and his father from Cuba, and so Mr. Perez understood the intricacies of different dialects of the same language very early in his childhood.
“Spanish has more than nine tenses, and even growing up in Mexico, that was confusing. It didn’t make sense to me as a child. And the dialects, the way you might say the same thing in different regions means different things. So, I’m in a unique position to discuss these same questions and relate to the difficulties that students learning a second language might find. Like many things, the answer is practice.”
He encouraged students who are currently engaged in learning Spanish to consider how opening one door grants them access to others, “Once you learn a language outside of your native one, it becomes easier to learn others. Spanish might just be the beginning for you.”