Mission and Philosophy
Intercultura is a language and cultural center devoted to achieving linguistic proficiency through cultural immersion and intercultural/ crosscultural education. We seek to cultivate global awareness and cooperation through the sharing of cultures and languages. We believe that participation in our program teaches not only a new language, but also effective tools for communication and understanding in the constantly evolving world culture in which we live. Our motto: “Learn the language, live the culture.”
Our vision is to provide Spanish courses based on an integral language learning and cultural experience. We use the communicative approach of teaching combined with strategic elements of current didactic/ academic and pedagogical theory in a total cultural immersion environment, contextualizing the language acquisition process. In addition, we are at the forefront of the linguistic and intercultural studies field and are focused on creating new programs, expanding and improving our facilities, while also continuing the professional development of our staff and reinvesting in local communities.
At Intercultura, we believe that the best way to study Spanish includes a diverse and enriched curriculum along with cultural experiences to make an easy transition from your first language to Spanish! You will enjoy studying Spanish in class, during daily cultural activities, in your homestay family and in the community.
We believe that there is more to a school than teaching and learning Spanish. At Intercultura Spanish School, we are committed to giving back to the communities that host us. Our organizational structure aims to provide employment and growth opportunities for local community members and businesses via the implementation of a decentralized and socially-conscious business model. Intercultura is the only Spanish School in Costa Rica approved by the United Nations Global Compact, a network of businesses recognized for their contributions in CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility, or RSE - Responsabilidad Social Empresarial en español).
STUDENT REVIEW: "My deepest thanks to Intercultura's office and faculty for the clever, conscientious ways in which you accomodated my ESSENTIAL TREMOR (shakey hands) disability. As you know, I was very concerned that my inability to write by hand or turn pages of a book would be insurmountable obstacles. In your program -- with the creative workarounds you devised and your highly-skilled, generous, respectful faculty -- they were not. At both of your campuses, you enabled me to feel comfortable in the classroom, do my homework, and learn a whole lot of Spanish. I was greatly impressed! Thank you all again, and hugs to my wonderful teachers: Carolina, Ruth, Byron, and Nelsy." Jeff Pector, 65, USA, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ensuring a total immersion experience:
Our Spanish immersion program is for those who are seeking a complete Spanish immersion opportunity, and our students' participation is essential in order to maintain a fully Spanish-speaking environment. Our program is based on four integrated components:
- daily classes
- daily cultural activities
- homestay families (optional but highly recommended)
- and last but not least, our "Spanish-Only rule" on campus, which means that we ask our students to speak only Spanish in and outside of the classroom. This is to make sure that our students make the most out of their Spanish studies while being in our school facilities, by providing a 100% immersion environment and experience for all students.
THE THEORY BEHIND OUR PHILOSOPHY:
“We are trying to get our learners to develop linguistic fluency, not just the accuracy that has so consumed our historical journey. We are equipping our students with tools for generating unrehearsed language performance 'out there' when they leave the womb of our classrooms. We are concerned with how to facilitate lifelong language learning among our students, not just with the immediate classroom task. We are looking at learners as partners in a cooperative venture. And our classroom practices seek to draw on whatever intrinsically sparks learners to reach their fullest potential." Brown (1994:77)
"The study of language is the world history of human thought and perception." Wilhelm von Humboldt