I was born in France and have spent many years living in France. I love discussing everything about French language, culture and attitudes and how they compare to British.
I was awarded a French scholarship at Oxford University, where I also studied Spanish and German, before doing a PGCE in Languages.
I’ve always spoken to my seven year old twins exclusively in French and their spoken French is as good as their English. We are a very French household and my daughters insist on making Galettes des rois long after January.
I’m often asked if it’s too late to learn a language and the answer is never! I run friendly French conversation groups everyday, from intermediate to advanced levels, where at least half of participants are (semi) retired, and that makes for fascinating and animated discussions.
I also have several private French students, either starting from beginner or pre-intermediate or looking to focus more on writing or grammar.
We are a very French household and my daughters insist on making Galettes des rois long after January.
Fun fact: My middle name – also the name of my paternal Grandmother – is Suzette, as in the crêpe!
I started Spanish in year 12 and was awarded an A* in GSCE within one academic year, then an A in A-level in my second year of study (the top mark at the time).
I read Spanish at Oxford University alongside French and German, and as a secondary school teacher I found it to be the most popular language choice at GCSE and A-Level. No one can deny that Spanish is sexy!
I now have three regular Spanish groups from complete beginner to upper intermediate, including a gorgeous couple, who married 3 days ago, at the time of writing, and are about to embark on an extended honeymoon year around South America.
Since visiting cousins in Venezuela, I fell in love with Latin American music and dance. And at Oxford, I ran the salsa society and performance team. As a teacher and pre-kids, I spent most school holidays living in Spain, where I did the equivalent of YMCA training as an aerobics and step instructor. I have also taught Zumba to adults and kids since 2010.
Fun fact: I learnt to dance flamenco in Spanish and had a novel (non violent!) way of instantly achieving silence in the classroom with my flamenco shoes
My maternal grand dad was a German Jew. Since his German nationality was taken away, he and his family have recently regained German nationality.
I have always felt an affinity with Germany. Both my maternal grandparents spoke German and I spent a year living in Berlin, whilst studying German, alongside French and Spanish at Oxford University.
My German students have ranged from 12 to 84, with everything ranigng through GCSE to A-Level and beyond.
Fun fact: My daughters like to exploit their German roots by trying to come up with the longest German word (no mean feat) and making Lebkuchenmann (which we promptly converted to a Lebkuchenfrau – a Gingerbread Woman!)
Since taking a course to teach English as a foreign language 20 years ago, I’ve taught students with very different levels and nationalities, both in the UK and abroad.
Unlike many English speakers, I speak slowly and clearly. I love discussing English grammar, and I surprise my family when I reach grammar books like novels!
Due to different linguistic backgrounds, English lessons often work best as 1-1 lessons. But I also currently teach English to groups of Peruvian naval officers, here with the navy and their families, and to prestigious professors at a Berlin university.
Thanks to my network, if I cannot fit in a new English student, I can recommend alternative, larger classes.
Fun fact: I met my husband at a charity event, run by a colleague at an English Language school, as we’d both sponsored him to swim the English Channel for Zimbabwe Rural Schools Development Programme. 12 years later, I’m still in his phone as “Adrienne ZRSDP”!