Spanish for Baja Residents is part of our parent school Toani, which is a language institute dedicated to teach Spanish, English and other indigenous languages of Mexico like Náhuatl. Spanish for Baja Residents was created specifically with the Baja-English speaking community in mind. We love languages and enjoy that feeling of victory when you manage to communicate with others in their native tongue. So, we thought it would be a great idea to teach Spanish as a second language, and help a large community to socialize with locals while living in Mexico.
Briefly this is our story…
End of 2012- A small group of students in San José del Cabo enrolled in a class to learn Spanish. This frist course was originally organized by the Foreign Residents Office.
End of 2013 -We completed a year of lessons and realized communication and pronunciation were the key to help our students learn and speak Spanish.
Beginning of 2014 -We started our first group in Cabo San Lucas. The Program initiated by the Foreign Residents Office eventually ended but we didn´t want to stop learning. So, we moved to a different location and most of our students followed us.
2015 – We started developing a method based on pronunciation to help our students link the sounds of the words and sound more natural when speaking. We needed technology to create and store video lessons, audio stories, etc, so we started exploring options to build our own online platform with courses and students-only access.
2016 – We started exploring the option to teach online via Skype and tought our students when they were not in Mexico. We concluded this ¨new online thing¨ would have to be a combination of online plus in-person classes plus self-paced lessons, plus classes with videoconference calls for distance learning to help a large audiende of students with different needs and schedules.
2017 – We launched our first online summer course held on Zoom using videoconference calls. It was a lot of fun!
2018 – From the beginning of our story, we always liked to design our one learning material like worksheets, lessons, quizzes, etc. By now we had our own recording equipment to create more engaging content like videos, audio files with pronunciation tips, nouns, verbs, and audio exercises.
End of 2019 – We solidified our speaking and pronunciation method and continued to build our online platform. Also our team grew.
End of 2020 – We introdunced our new Toani Membership Program, which is a new podcast and conversation system that allows our students join weekly conversation sessions and it also includes access to our podcasts with short stories and local news in Spanish.
Beginning of 2021 – It has been diffcult times to deal and we begin a fresh new year hoping the Covid19 pandemic will end soon. We are optimistic and we are also proffesionally ready to continue to help our students with different learning options to choose from. We offer group lessons, private lessons, self-study content, podcasts and conversation.
There is a lot more coming up…stay tuned 🙂
My name is Jair, and I’m the founder of Spanish for Baja Residents. I’m originally from Monterrey and I’ve lived in Cabo for nearly 10 years. I have always been interested in learning new languages and meeting new people. I started learning English when I was about 12, then started learning Italian at the age of 15. Náhuatl (spoken by the Aztecs back in the day, and the most second spoken language in Mexico after Spanish nowadays) was the third language on my list to learn. I studied at The State University of Baja California Sur, UABCS, and graduated from Lenguas Modernas, majoring in Spanish, English and French. I started developing Spanish classes to help Americans and Canadians living in Cabo communicate with locals. That was back in 2012. I’m currently working on improving a pronunciation system that can be easily learned and useful for the Baja English speaking community. I also teach Náhuatl at UABCS, and continue learning and contributing as much as I can to promote living native languages of Mexico.