Reviews

For over 15 years, I have had the pleasure of working with a great number of clients from various backgrounds, careers, industries, and locations. Many of them have been kind enough to write a few words about their experience with Spanish with Salas.

I hope these testimonials will give you a better idea of what learning or expanding your Spanish would be like with me. As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

See more reviews at my Yelp page.

 

“Whatever your level of Spanish knowledge, from beginner to advanced, you’ll love learning with Christian! His teaching style is informal, as if you are speaking with a friend — but a friend whose interest isseeing that you learn correctly. I would describe myself as an utter beginner; yet recently some friends from Spain complimented me on my accent and said that my Spanish sounded more advanced than I believed it to be. That’s the best recommendation I can give for Christian and his teaching”

—Robin Jenkins | Journalist

My father is from Puerto Rico, and my mother is from the Philippines.  Although both of my parents are fluent in Spanish, they did not teach me how to speak the language.  It’s a long story.  However, since I appear to be of Spanish decent and I live in the Logan Square area, many of my first generation Latino neighbors, who only speak Spanish, expect me to do the same.

By profession I’m a Funeral Director, and I have just started my own business.  If I hope to serve the Spanish Community with the surname Hernandez, I must be able to speak the language.   I was always embarrassed when my neighbors would try and engage me in conversation.  Now I’m not afraid anymore, thanks to “Spanish with Salas”.

Christian has made learning Spanish enjoyable.  He conducts class in a way that makes you feel like you’re getting together with a bunch of friends, sitting around a table and having conversation about whatever comes to mind.  The class is structured, and he does have a lesson plan, but if we go off on a tangent, he doesn’t mind as long as we converse in Spanish.  Because Christian encourages conversational Spanish, as opposed to the traditional classroom style of straight grammar, my conversational Spanish has improved dramatically.

Christian has a great sense of humor too, so we spend a lot of time laughing, which makes time fly. I always leave wishing class was longer. So if you really want to learn conversational Spanish in a non-intimidating, fun and enjoyable environment, “Spanish with Salas” is the course for you.”

Phillip Fernandez | Licensed Funeral Director

“If you are looking for an easy, fun and relaxing way to learn conversational Spanish, then “Spanish with Salas” is the program for you. I have been taking a weekly group class with Christian for more than 2 years and I can honestly say that I look forward to each class.

I came into the program with minimal Spanish vocabulary and the ability to say a few things in present tense. At this point, I would describe myself as fairly fluent. Christian’s teaching method is so natural that I feel like I barely put any effort into learning. I don’t spend tedious hours studying, doing homework, or memorizing and yet I continue to gain conversational skills. Even while working in a group, Christian individualizes his teaching to suit each student’s strengths and weaknesses.  He truly makes the class enjoyable and what he teaches sticks with you because it is learned through conversation. Because of his wit and wonderful sense of  humor, I always find myself wishing our classes were just a little longer.

I am a registered nurse, currently working in the Chicago Public School system and I am assigned to schools in the predominantly Spanish-speaking community of Pilsen. I had always wanted to be able to communicate with my students and their families without the use of an interpreter.  Now, thanks to “Spanish with Salas”, I am at the level where I am comfortable using Spanish to communicate. So, if conversational Spanish is your goal, I would highly recommend “Spanish with Salas” as the program for you”

—Marianne H. Galloway | Registered Nurse, Certified School Nurse

“I took Spanish classes on and off for many years, but it was only after I signed up with Christian a year and a half ago that I really started to learn the language. Christian is an excellent teacher. His lessons are a mix of casual conversation, formal instruction, and playful exercises that give you an opportunity to practice what you’ve learned.

Among the many qualities that make him effective are his patience,his sense of humor, and his knack for gauging and responding to his students’ individual needs.

He keeps my mind active in class, drawing me into discussions that are pertinent to my life and interests and explaining both the basics and the intricacies of the language with precision and clarity. I’m thrilled by the progress I’m making. And so are my Spanish-speaking friends. They no longer have to indulge me—now we’re having detailed, two-way conversations, and I have Christian to thank for that.

Spanish still isn’t what I’d call easy—I usually leave class feeling as though my brain has had a strenuous workout—but learning it from Christian is a whole lot of fun, and I am confident that he can help me reach the level of proficiency I strive for.”

—Tori Marlan | Journalist

“Christian is an excellent, very engaging teacher. He really makes learning fun and has an effective approach. He uses visual aides and role plays to emphasize practical conversational skills. I especially appreciate that he requires me to talk so much during the lesson, and is very positive and encouraging as I stumble!”

—Julia Rinaldi PhD | Staff Psychologist, Department of Chlid and Adolescent Psychiatry, Children’s Memorial Hospital

“As someone who has studied Spanish off and on since high school, I was surprised and thrilled to find that taking Spanish classes could be so much fun and so easy.  That’s what I found in taking Spanish classes with Christian for the past two years.  Although Christian encourages me to study and to work hard on fine-tuning my skills that have developed these past two years, it never feels like a chore.  Instead, each class feels like an opportunity to catch up with friends (Christian and the other students in my class) and learn what’s new with them – the only difference is that we are doing the catching up in Spanish.

However, the skills we are developing are not just in conversational Spanish – they go well beyond that.  For example, Christian utilizes a number of training techniques and assignments which help all of us practice the use of Spanish for our particular professions or interests.  For example, as a labor lawyer, I am often called upon to meet with and prepare potential Spanish-speaking witnesses.  Keeping this in mind, Christian has helped me, through assignments, practice the very skills that I need to perform these tasks and prepare these witnesses, in Spanish, and with greater confidence and with more proper pronunciation.  Christian has helped other students develop and practice skills used in their professions.  As a result, I am actually using the skills I am developing through my instruction with Christian – not just leaving my Spanish at the door when I leave class.

So if you really want to learn Spanish that you can actually use in your daily and professional life and want to do in a fun, motivating and friendly atmosphere, I highly recommend you learn Spanish with Salas.”

—Amy Zdravecky | Management Side Labor Attorney, Law offices of Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg, LLP

I started learning Spanish 2 years ago.  I own a small business processing ambulance medical bills and realized that increasingly, our client base was Hispanic and it behooved me to learn Spanish.  At 55 years old, I am now the “Old Man” (Viejo), in the group.  Though difficult at times, I have enjoyed the experience immensely and feel that Christian’s technical knowledge, Verb usage, sentence structure, etc. are excellent.  Additionally, he has a great sense of humor and is able to lighten the moment when necessary.  I continue with my studies and I hope to spend a week abroad this winter in an immersion environment in Latin America or Spain.

Though I feel I am not learning as quickly as some of my younger classmates, Christian is careful to keep us all moving in the same direction.  He just proposed some individual classes, in conjunction with our group meetings, to work on individual weakness and “tailor” the learning experience to each student.  I have found the whole experience gratifying and would highly recommend Christian as a teacher.

—Tom Cosgrove | President, Medical Reimbursement Services, Inc.

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