What Do You Know About The Hispanic World?

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A-level Spanish By: Please log in to see tutor details
Subject: Spanish » A-level Spanish
Last updated: 23/08/2017
Tags: a level spanish, cultural awareness, culture, hispanic world, latinamerica

The new A Level courses have brought a change in content. No longer do they take some of the GCSE topics, such as travel, education, or healthy living to a higher level by introducing new vocabulary and grammar and asking you to write discursive essays about the topics. Instead exam boards are demanding understanding not just about Spain but also the Hispanic World. You may wonder why these changes have been made?

Well along with many great academics and writers, such as Thomas Friedman, I would argue that due to globalisation our world has become smaller and as a result our daily lives have a much more international feel. If you are learning Spanish, it's not only relevant to learn about Spain but also other countries where Spanish is spoken as we need to celebrate all cultures, not only ones that are closer by.

There are of course many countries where Spanish is spoken, so it is unreasonable to demand you know everything about all these countries, so don't worry! Course books will go far but it's what you do away from the classroom which matters most. To gain the higher grades at A Level you are expected to work beyond the classroom. This certainly doesn't mean working all hours, but doing some independent research will give you a background to your subject which proves invaluable when exam season arrives. Of course if you are passionate about your subject you won't see this as a chore but as an exciting opportunity. As teachers we can never predict exactly what articles and vocabulary are going to arise in the exam so you must be well-read and well-informed. Reading and listening in Spanish is best as you will pick up new words of vocabulary but if you have a keen interest in the historical, geographical, political or social side of the countries it may sometimes be easier to understand information in your native language first.

A Level courses cover aspects such as Art, Architecture, Films, Food, Famous People and Places, Historical Events and Literature to name a few and all of these aspects can link to different Spanish speaking countries. You may need to know about Chichén Itzá in Mexico and the Mayan civilisation or perhaps there may be an article on the influence of Gaston Acurio and his use of Peruvian ingredients in his dishes. To reiterate, you will never know everything about all the countries but it’s important that you become more familiar with the Hispanic World ready for your exams plus perhaps one day you will be fortunate enough to visit and experience it all for yourself!

Some of the following websites might help you discover more about the Hispanic world around you:

Clare Higginson GCSE Spanish Tutor (Gloucester)

About The Author

Having lived in various places across the world, I now enjoy sharing my experiences to enthuse and motivate others to acquire language skills alongside cultural awareness, whether that be for pleasure, work or examinations. 

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