Why study Spanish?


I’ve been teaching college Spanish for twelve years now every student has his or her own reason for studying Spanish.  Most college students take Spanish because of the foreign language requirement. I remember one of these students who barely passed the course. When I returned her first exam, I felt bad for her because she only earned a D. When she saw her exam grade, she shouted, “Yes!” I was worried that perhaps I had given her the wrong grade. The entire class turned to look at her. She then shouted, “Yes, I got a D!” She was so proud of herself. She went through this ritual after every exam. I gave her a final grade of D for the course. The next semester, I saw her in the hallway and I was hoping she wouldn’t see me because I thought she was unhappy about her grade. But alas, she saw me and approached. Suddenly, she smiled and said, “Thanks for the grade you gave me!” And she was genuinely happy about it. Then, she added, “I had a lot of fun in your class.” I was shocked by all this, but I must admit that it was all very rewarding.

So I was thinking of other reasons that my students took Spanish. Here are some:

  1. I’ve always wanted to learn Spanish.
  2. My wife speaks Spanish.
  3. My husband speaks Spanish.
  4. It’s a beautiful language.
  5. I want to go to Mexico on vacation.
  6. Most of my customers speak Spanish.
  7. My parishioners speak Spanish.
  8. I want to move to Mexico.
  9. I want to go to a Mexican restaurant and order food in Spanish.
  10. I want to see Penelope Cruz movies in Spanish.
  11. There are so many Mexicans here, we’re all going to have to learn Spanish anyway.
  12. I want a sexy Mexican girlfriend.
  13. I’m Mexican and I can’t speak Spanish.
  14. I think the cooks in the kitchen are talking about me.

Are you sure you're not talking about me?

Published by

David Diego Rodríguez, Ph.D.

I write about whatever comes to mind. También enseño español y escribo acerca de los mexicanos y la enseñanza del español.