Martin Luther King day

Martin Luther King Junior was an American hero; whose life choices offer many teaching opportunities. On Monday January 15, Valdebernardo celebrated MLK day. For most students it was their first time hearing about the late activist. Dr. King experienced racial segregation and police brutality until the day of his untimely death, but even through the hardship he envisioned a better world, so that no person would have to live the way he was forced to. The goal of introducing Martin Luther King Junior and his legacy to the classrooms was to create a dialogue about stereotyping, race, and respect. It’s key that students think critically, so we asked them to compare and contrast race relations in the United States and in Spain. We hope that the celebration and discussion of Dr. King has left a footprint with all of the students at Valdebernardo high-school.

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Global Classrooms Update!

        The Global Classrooms journey is almost coming to a close as we move into December, when we will have our first practice conferences to prepare our students for the regional Madrid conference in late January. All students in 3 ESO will participate in the Global Classrooms conference on December 12 at Valdebernardo.
It is an all day event (9 AM – 2 PM) in which students will need to dress professionally and present their country’s perspective on the global issues of migrant rights. In pairs, students have worked very hard in class to research, report, and refine a substantial research paper on their respective country’s position, and now we are ready for them to apply this information in an oral debate!
If you are looking for more information on what Valdebernardo is doing with Global Classrooms, check out our class site at
Mitch Wellman (Global Classrooms Assistant)


       Thanksgiving is an American and Canadian holiday that, among other things, involves eating large amounts of turkey, stuffing, potatoes, bread, pumpkin pies and cranberry sauce. The holiday annually celebrates the first American pilgrims’ gratitude toward Native Americans for teaching them how to grow crops and survive on American soil.
      The English language assitants used this holiday to make students think about what they are thankful for. Students traced their hands on colored paper and wrote things they were thankful for, and after the language assistants formed a giant turkey out of the hands to be displayed on the wall at Valdebernardo (picture below).
With thanks,
The Bilingual Teamyhank2thankIMG_1524

Update on Global Classrooms:


Students in  3º ESO have been working hard on preparing for the Global Classrooms Conference, which is a Model United Nations activity where students represent the interests of various countries as delegates. Students focus on a specific world problem (e.g. poverty, hunger, infant mortality) from the perspective of a specific country, and then work with other country delegations to form resolutions for that issue.


Each year the Comunidad de Madrid assigns participating schools a specific topic and specific countries to prepare. This year, Valdebernardo has been assigned the topic of human rights of migrants. Our specific countries of study are Andorra, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Liberia, and Slovakia. We will ask students to participate in a practice conference with local schools in December (date TBD) and the offical conference on January 26, 2018.


Visit the Valdebernardo Global Classrooms website for more information:


Best regards,
Mitch (Global Classrooms Language Assistant)

 The Haunted Library (Boo!):



With the help of the English and French language assistants, the bilingual coordinator, the librarian, and several teachers, Valdebernardo hosted its first ever Haunted Library last week on Halloween. Students from 1º and 2º ESO had the opportunity to take a tour through the spooky Haunted Library during school and meet goblins, ghouls, and witches along the way. Activities included crawling through a dark tunnel, getting candy, and tarot card readings. We were excited to see the students’ interest in the celebration of Halloween!

The Bilingual Team

Greg, our assistant from California

            My name is Greg, and I am from Oakland, California.  Oakland is also the home of NBA champions The Golden State Warriors and Stephen Curry.  I am excited to be returning for a second year as an assistant at IES Valdebernardo. It makes me very happy to see familiar faces in the corridors.  I studied literature at University of California Santa Cruz.  When I am not at school, I enjoy playing music, traveling, and spending time in nature. 
            I used to play in a rock band called ¨Caldecott,¨and you can even find me from time to time in bars throughout Madrid playing guitar and singing my songs. This summer I had the opportunity to travel all over Western Europe with my girlfriend to see many famous sites. 
           But in the end, I found that no where is as special as the community of Valdebernardo.

Zulaikha, our assitant from New York

Hola Tod@s!

I´m Zulaikha, I am from New York. This is my second year as an Auxiliar in Spain. Last year, I was living in the city of Murcia and working in a primary school in San Javier. I love working with kids of all ages. In my free time, I like to write, practice yoga, and make films. A big part of my life is being creative.

I look forward to a great year together in Valdebernardo!

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Peter, our British assistant

Hello there, my name is Peter. I am a 24 year old British Language Assistant from Manchester, England. Home of the best football team Manchester United and my favourite musical band, The Stone Roses. It is my second year here as a languages assistant at IES Valdebernardo. My main hobbies include football, music and travelling. I play football for a football team in Madrid called ‘Bocodillo Juniors’. During my travels I have been fortunate enough to travel all around Europe and America and last summer I was lucky enough to go to Japan for 2 weeks visiting Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka and Nara. My ambition is to carry on teaching English all over the world, in order to see all that the world has to offer.   


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Gabriel, our assistant from Georgia

Most of my childhood was a marriage between storytelling and fashion. I took that passion and studied communications and journalism at the University of West Georgia. This year I worked as an intern for the university communications and marketing department, and used that experience to land a dream position with a magazine in Atlanta. Merging my two passions, writing and fashion, I was an editorial writer for Modest Truth Magazine. We served an audience devoted to social justice, feminism, and fashion. I love writing, but I yearned for something more fulfilling this year. I accepted an opportunity with the Community of Madrid as a language assistant for the 2017-2018 school year, and I am excited to help refine the students’ English skills. I look forward to the continuous support from the staff, and dedication from the students at IES Valdebernardo.



Our Fulbright assistant: Mitch Wellman


¡Hola a todos! My name is Mitch Wellman, and I am a native of Atlanta, Georgia (USA) with a passion for learning about the world through international travel. I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and political theory from the University of Virginia in May 2017. I am excited to be in Madrid this school year and to help students learn English. English is a tricky language with many rules and exceptions, but I believe the best things in life do not come easily. I strive to patiently work with students to improve their English and to help them learn from mistakes, and I will be focusing on working with the 3º ESO students this year as they embark on a project called Global Classrooms, which is a model United Nations activity. In my free time, I am an avid graphic artist who enjoys classical music and playing tennis. I also enjoy good food and a good siesta.