OUR HISTORY – THE SCHOOL
When we opened our doors, all we had were a few teachers, one cook, 16 local children, barely enough money to feed and educate our flock, and no guarantee of a future. However we had faith, dedication, and our dream. Against all odds, Amigos was born. We began with an initial donation from a private company in Holland, but it was only sufficient to cover the initial months of the Youth Program.
Amigos Our first foreign students were two people from Germany, Simon and Anne. On the first day of class, they were very enthusiastic and excited about their lessons. They felt very happy that their Spanish lessons were also providing education and food for our 16 local boys and girls. They also saw that we were giving our children something that they sorely missed at home: love. After six weeks of intensive Spanish lessons, living with a Peruvian family, and sharing the school with our children, they left with a good working knowledge of Spanish to continue their travels in Latin America. When they left, they said something unforgettable: “Amigos es realmente Amigos” (“Amigos truly is Amigos”). After a while, the number of students started growing little by little. Our students were not only happy with their noticeable improvements in Spanish, but were also very satisfied that they were helping the community in Cusco. Today, we have an enviable reputation in Cusco and people all over the world have spread many good sentiments about Amigos.
Now, the Amigos Spanish School has many Spanish teachers and employees working to help our youth. We are an amazing team that believes in the school’s mission. We all give our best to the foreigners who attend our school and care deeply about the welfare and the future of our children. Our local students are very motivated and have said many times that this school is the best thing in their lives.
Now, the Amigos Spanish School finances 100% of the youth program by itself. We are very proud of this achievement.
Our school has always been both a professional and friendly place. In the classroom, our teachers are qualified, professional, dynamic, and can systematically and effectively meet the needs of any student who walks through our doors. We are first and foremost a Spanish school with strict standards of excellence when it comes to language learning. All lessons are taught in the communicative method most favoured by second-language professionals all over the world. Our daily curricula reflect the needs of students in their emphasis on everyday usage, finding the best ways for them to identify, understand, and reproduce the Spanish language in real-life situations. This sometimes means listening to Spanish music, roleplaying common situations, or even learning useful chunks of language that can be used in situation-specific environments, among many other learning tools. Communicative classroom activities and games are integral to this; we do not need or want students to be merely passive actors in the classroom; we want our students to engage with the language and use it as much as they can. The curriculum we have prepared is tailored to each student’s level and we encourage students to challenge both our teachers and themselves in order to make the most of this learning relationship.
With a high level of professionalism, we are able to create a calm, friendly, and welcoming environment within the school. Our ethos has always called for a familiar and casual relationship. Here, students can feel comfortable grabbing a cup of tea and relaxing with staff between classes, hanging around to watch a movie, or just making plans to enjoy the city and everything it offers in the company of good friends. While our class are systematic and rigorous, Amigos won’t feel like a business or a cold, clinical institute. The best environment for learning is a comfortable one. We want you to feel at home, to make the most of your time with us, and to enjoy yourself.
Our foreign students gain much more than a mere improvement in their Spanish ability. Learning a language is a gateway to understanding different people and different cultures. At Amigos, we want to open that gateway as wide as we can during a student’s time with us.
As we evolve and change, our core philosophy remains the same. At Amigos, we believe strongly that one way to further communication and understanding in our world is to learn about each other in a deeper and more profound way. Here, learning a new language is the first step in fostering mutual understanding of another culture and becoming a worldwide citizen.