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May 2017 - Carynne Drake

Carynne Drake
With bubbly, joyful energy and endless enthusiasm for learning Spanish, Carynne lights up the room and contributes to creating a positive class dynamic in any group she’s in. Notably dedicated to her studies, Carynne has been taking classes at Tierra for nearly three years and has improved her Spanish skills by leaps and bounds in that time. Reporting that Spanish class is her “me time” amid a busy life caring for her three young children, she places great value in the community aspect of group classes and builds mutually supportive relationships with her classmates. Highly inquisitive and eager to widen her cultural knowledge, her reflections and questions often help bring group discussions deeper into the subject at hand and enrich the interaction for all. We’re grateful to have Carynne as part of our community at Tierra and look forward to seeing her continue to blossom as a Spanish-speaker!


Name: Carynne Drake
Occupation: Recently became a stay-at-home mom after working for the Make-A-Wish Foundation for 10 years
Time Studying at Tierra: Since August 2014 (almost 3 years)

1) Why are you studying Spanish?

"I have enjoyed studying Spanish on-and-off since middle school, but since becoming a stay-at-home mom to my 3 little ones (ages 6, 4 and 9 months), Spanish has become even more important in my life. For two hours a week, I get to come to Tierra and be part of this special community. It's a time to challenge myself, to meet interesting new people and to learn a language I love from some of the most encouraging and talented teachers I've ever met."

2) What is your favorite part about your experience here at Tierra?

"I really appreciate the diverse opinions and conversations we are having as the classes become more difficult. The students and teachers treat one another with such respect and patience during these discussions which often cover challenging topics. Laura does a great job introducing interesting articles, questions and leading the conversation."

3) Can you tell us of a time you have been able to use what you have learned studying here?

"I use the Spanish I've learned while traveling, but for me, the most rewarding part at this point in my life is teaching Spanish to my children. To see their faces light up when they remember a new word is such a joy.  While we drive around town they constantly quiz me, "Mama, como se dice _____ en espanol?" over and over.  Then they celebrate when they can stump me!  I look forward to the day when my entire family can all carry on a full conversation over dinner in Spanish.

Also, a good friend of mine is a Spanish speaker and we meet up once a week to exercise together....and we are only allowed to talk in Spanish! It's another fun way to keep practicing during the week."

¡Felicidades Carynne!