What is a Language Assistant? Roles and Responsibilities

A language assistant or an auxiliar de conversación in Spanish, is a native English-speaker who spends a year in Spain supporting teacher in a public primary or secondary school. The goal of this type of program is to bring native-like speakers of English into classrooms in Spain to enhance student’s language skills. A language assistant serves as a linguistic model for students in Spain. Listening to the language assistant’s pronunciation will better students’ English language skills.

The participation of native language assistants in classrooms is considered very useful as a reference point for the development of a language. Besides being an internationally recognized practice for improving communicative competence in foreign language students, the assistants will contribute to more natural geographic, social, cultural, economic and topical aspects of the reference country.

Shaniya, an RVF Program Participant from 2020, getting read for the winter with her school in Alicante, Spain!

It’s a perfect opportunity to become a teaching assistant to foreign language teachers in Spain and at the same time to learn about the culture and language of Spain. This will allow the assistant to acquire a deeper knowledge of Spain, its society and its education system.

Just a normal commute to work each day.

The principal role of a language assistant is to encourage students of all ages in Spain to broaden their knowledge of the language and culture. The language assistants work on tasks with small groups of students under the coordination the English teacher. They may also be asked to lead class sessions and conduct oral exams preparation while the teacher conducts other regular exams in the classroom, always under the supervision of the corresponding department. Therefore, a language assistant is expected to plan and conduct activities that focus on language and culture, such as listening and speaking, activities, role plays, or games for the students.