Sr. John Allen — Spanish Teacher (5-8th)John AllenJohn Allen
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Rm. 26

¡Bienvenidos al sitio de la clase de español! Estoy muy feliz de estar aquí en Woodside este año.
Mi historia:  I have been a Spanish teacher for the past 15 years, and I have taught at both the secondary and university levels. This will be my first year teaching middle school, and I’m very excited!  I have spent the majority of my career teaching high school Spanish at all levels (1-5AP).  I am a reader for CollegeBoard, and every summer I grade the nation’s AP Spanish Language and Culture exam. 
I received a BA in Spanish from WKU (Western Kentucky University), after which I pursued a Master’s degree in Bilingual Education with an emphasis in Spanish.  Next, I taught undergraduate courses at Ohio University while pursuing another Master’s degree in Hispanic Literature/ Applied Linguistics.  My study abroad experiences include studying abroad on three different occasions in my undergraduate study both in Mexico and in Spain. I was a student for about a year at two different Mexican universities, and one year at a university in Spain.
Most recently, I have been a teacher at Los Gatos High School teaching Spanish 3 and Spanish 5AP.  I have had a 100% passing rate for the students in my class taking the AP exam.  I most recently was awarded “Educator of the Year” for the school year 2019-2020. Outside of teaching, I started a Quiz Bowl team at Los Gatos, and we traveled and competed all throughout California.  I was also the Speech and Debate coach at several schools where I have previously worked.  I competed in Speech and Debate from middle school through the collegiate level and was on the National and International Championship team in college.
Mi filosofía: The best way to learn a language is to be immersed in it, so room 26 is, for the most part, an English-free space. Students are encouraged to take academic and personal risks, pushing themselves to listen, speak read, and write in Spanish on a daily basis. Though taking academic and personal risks can be intimidating, those who give themselves permission to make and learn from mistakes will experience tremendous growth as hispanohablantes.

Learning a second language also requires significant self-direction, so students will be supported in developing strong executive functioning skills. From adhering to a variety of schedules to evaluating the effectiveness of memorization strategies, students will build their executive functioning alongside their Spanish.