Kristen Wolf - Kristen ND Wolf (@LaLobaLista) is a dynamic educator and presenter. Her background as a Montessori & Spanish teacher has led her to understand the process of language acquisition and human development in meaningful ways. Kristen enjoys creating a community with her classes. La Loba Lista’s (the ready Wolf) teaching style is engaging, story based and supported by language acquisition research. She is blessed with two children and a very supportive husband, as well as three dogs and one cat. Kristen loves getting outside and enjoying the beauty of Montana and its vibrant communities. She has travelled extensively and lived in Spain and has completed her master’s degree at MSU. She encourages you to come participate in or observe a class!!
Paul Gomex - Paul is a performer, musician and director born in Venezuela and transplanted to Bozeman after a long sejour of ten years in Europe. He has traveled the world performing and teaching theater and circus, and besides speaking four languages, he masters and vindicates the universal language of Laughter. Paúl got his Masters in Physical Theater from Academy Dimitri in Switzerland and besides being one of the coaches for the WLI-MT, he is the founder of the Bozeman Cirque School, “406 Cirque”.
Paola Torres - (Peru)is a Spanish teacher at Helena High School.She moved to Montana from Lima, Peru where she worked as a journalist to start a new career as a foreign language teacher. She has experience teaching Pre-K, Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle School and adult students. She taught at the World Language Initiative for three years and she enjoys sharing her knowledge and culture with the community.
Ellie Nolan - I began studying the Spanish language at the age of fourteen, at Sentinel High School in Missoula. I loved it from the start and would practice with any and all Spanish speakers that I met. My senior year of high school, I traveled to Costa Rica through a school program and fell in love with the idea of traveling. Reaching out to many of the international students who traveled to Missoula for study abroad experiences, I discovered my love for many languages. I came to Montana State University in the Fall of 2016, and began a double major with Hispanic Studies and History, with a French minor. My freshman year of college, I taught a third grade Spanish class at Irving Elementary through Galen Brokaw’s class within the Modern Languages department here at the university. I was also a Spanish tutor through Smarty Cats Tutoring on campus. In July of 2017, I left to Peru to travel and study for a semester, returning in January after six months of immersion with improved Spanish skills and many new perspectives. While in South America, I traveled around most of Peru and some of Chile. I also lived with and became close friends with students from Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Colombia, and other countries. Through this experience, I discovered my passion for the various cultures and contemporary social changes of Latin America. I also discovered the importance of learning a foreign language for the purposes of communicating with someone in their native language, therefore making a more profound connection with them and better understanding their perspectives and opinions, which may differ from my own. The learning of a foreign language not only has great cognitive benefits for people of all ages, but it also enables the speaker to travel, make connections, see new perspectives, and experience new ways of life. For this reason, I am honored and excited to be a part of the World Language Initiative by sharing my knowledge, experiences, and passion for language and culture with students.
Evelyn Paz - taught Spanish and French with the Bozeman World Language Enrichment Program from 2014 to 2016. She is a native Spanish speaker from Peru who attended Bozeman High School where she learned English as a second language. She is the founder of Munayki Peru, a community dance group dedicated to promoting Peruvian folklore in MT. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in French Literature from MSU-Bozeman and a MEd in TESOL from the City University of New York. Currently she is an adjunct instructor of French and Spanish at MSU.
Minerva Carrasco - My name is Minerva Carrasco and I was born in Mexico City. Reading, listening to music and knitting are my hobbies. I love teaching because it is a way of being creative, generous and sociable; besides, I always learn something from my students!! WLI gives me the opportunity to work with kids, which is new to me but I have found it very amusing and rewarding; children are full of surprises and fun!
Michelle Manzo Cobb - Michelle was born and raised in Miami, FL by Cuban and Dominican parents. She obtained her first undergrad in Music education at Miami College. She furthered her studies in New York with a jazz emphasis and has performed throughout the world. Michelle has always had a passion for teaching as she has mentored countless students throughout her career as well as taught in a music conservatory in Miami. Now with passion for teaching and with her family based in Bozeman, she is excited to continue her journey as a teacher of Spanish.
Yolanda Reyes - Yolanda is originally from Ecuador and has lived in the US for over 20 years. She has lived and traveled to various continents and appreciates the richness and cultural influences that all this has brought to her life. She is a mother of two boys and enjoys being a Montessori guide to many children. Besides being an educator she also enjoys designing jewelry and photographing the world around her, creativity is very important in her daily life and cherishes living in Montana where beauty is all around her. She finds inspiration in nature and in children and is very happy to enter this community!
Ian Bailey - My name is Ian Bailey I am a graduate of Montana State University here in Bozeman, MT in the Modern Language Department focusing in Hispanic Studies. I moved to Bozeman from Eagle, Colorado a little less than 5 years ago after taking my first semester of University credits at a CPI Cultural Immersion School in Costa Rica. Attending MSU and completing courses in Latin American and Hispanic Studies, I spent the fall semester of 2016 at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso in Chile attending classes in old and current socio-political climates throughout Latin America. During school abroad, I was also working as a volunteer mentor for an all boys orphanage in Valparaíso called Hogar Padre Pienovi where I had my first experiences teaching and working with children in a foreign language. During my time in Bozeman I have held various jobs, one of then being a volunteer teacher for the Spanish section of Hour of Enrichment at Irving Elementary. I spend my time playing music in several local bands, skiing, biking, and climbing. In my own overall experience of coaching, teaching, or instructing any type of lesson or new skill, the use of patience is perhaps the most important aspect in any classroom. I am a supporter of a calm classroom atmosphere that incorporates engaging activities which lead to a comfortable environment for all students to participate equally and in a stress-free environment. Establishing a strong sense of patience and respect in my classroom will allow every student to want to come to class and develop a strong interest for the Spanish language.
Mikaela Byers - was born and raised in Santa Cruz, California, but has lived in Bozeman since 2015 when she started studying at Montana State University (MSU). She graduated with highest honors and a double major in Political Science and Environmental Studies in May 2019. Her life is defined by her passions for teaching, multiculturalism, and the Spanish language. Mikaela was introduced to Spanish in 8th grade, and has been in love ever since. She took Spanish classes throughout high school and university. During her undergraduate career, Mikaela spent a summer in an intensive Spanish language program and homestay in Guadalajara, Mexico. In Bozeman, she was a research intern for the MSU History Department, studying the lives of Salvadoran refugees in the aftermath of the El Salvador civil war. Additionally, she was a Teacher’s Assistant (TA) for Spanish at MSU. Mikaela has a wide variety of teaching experience both inside and outside the classroom. In addition being a TA for two classes at MSU, she was ESL Literacy Tutor for Bozeman Public Schools, tutoring native Spanish-speaking students in learning English as a second language. She served as a Child Advancement Program (CAP) Mentor in Bozeman Public Schools, and was an instructor at the MSU Outdoor Recreation Program for nearly four years. Most recently, Mikaela was an AmeriCorps Field Educator for Teton Science Schools in Jackson, Wyoming, where she taught place-based field education to children and young adults. She is thrilled to join the World Language Initiative and inspire her students to love the Spanish language as much as she does.
Cecilia Mariles- was born and raised in Chihuahua, Mexico, and decided to move to Bozeman to study at Montana State University. Her major is in Exercise Science and she hopes to become a physical therapist, so she can help many people. Cecilia grew up speaking both English and Spanish because her parents wanted her to be bilingual, for which she is incredibly grateful. She is interested in learning Italian as her third language. When she was in high school, she had the opportunity to teach an elementary class in English and Spanish. Cecilia found it exciting to witness not only how fast kids learned but how much smarter they became once they knew two languages. Cecilia finds learning a new language an amazing experience, as she believes it not only allows one to have more connections but also gives one a whole new perspective of life. There are many words in all languages that don’t translate into other languages, and that’s why it’s so great to get to learn new things and meanings. She says that it is her pleasure to be a part of the World Language Initiative to teach Spanish and inspire students to keep learning.
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