Escuela Amistad

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Language Learning Through Friendship

Next Upcoming classes and opportunities for all levels start on August 30th!

Our unique method of language learning is based on the simple idea of getting to know people across cultural and language barriers.  We have ten week experiences with live virtual visits to communities, small businesses, artists, activists, and other interesting people in Tijuana coupled with conversation classes and one on one “Charlamigo” sessions where you can converse and get to know native speakers in Tijuana (like a virtual pen pal!).  Check out the wide array of upcoming courses and options for Spanish language learning to see what fits your schedule and language level.  Take the free evaluation and get a personalized response from one of our excellent professors! 
Questions? Email our director Daniel Watman at

Upcoming classes and opportunities for all levels start on August 30th!

In these on-line experiences and course you will:

  • Acquire basic conversational skills or enhance abilities to express and understand the language
  • Make friends across borders
  • Participate in virtual site visits to communities in Tijuana
  • Have fun in regular online classes centered around your personal interests
  • Participate in 30-min 1 on 1 “Charlamigo” sessions with native speakers in Tijuana on your own schedule

10 – week Online Beginner course starts August 30th!

Tues/Thurs 1-2p online video class

Week 1

  • Tech orientation and introductions

Week 2-5

  • Basic communication through interactive activities and role plays
  • Learn to express and ask about personal interests

Weeks 6-10

  • Tuesdays: practice, review, and further learning
  • Thursdays: virtual site visits to practice español getting to know individuals and communities in Tijuana.

Cost $250

Sign up here

10-week Experience Intermediate advanced level
Starts August 30th Tues/Thurs 12-1p

  • Week 1
    • Orientation to technology and getting to know each other
  • Week 2-10
    • Tues – Review, prep, and further learning
    • Thurs – Virtual site visits to practice español getting to know individuals and communities in Tijuana.
  • On YOUR own time throughout course
    • 10 one on one “charlamigo” sessions with native speakers in Tijuana
  • Total cost $250

Sign up here! 

Friday Lunchtime Focused Learning Sessions 12- 1:15p Intermediate/advanced students

Hone your skills!

Guaranteed to make grammar fun!

  • September 2nd – Ser y Estar en todos los tiempos (pasado, presente, futuro)
  • September 16th – Contando historias (hablando en el pasado)
  • September 30th – Contando historias II
  • October 14th –  Subjunctive in the present
  • October 30th – Subjuntivo en todos los tiempos
  • For Int/Adv
  • Only $20/session OR all 5 sessions included in “Package deal” (see below)

Sign up for one or more sessions here!

Combine intermediate/advanced options above to include:

  • Intermediate/Advanced 10-week experience with all it includes
  • PLUS access to next 5 Friday lunchtime focused learning sessions.
  • $300
  • $50 dollar savings!

Sign up for the package here! 

“CHARLAMIGOS” – Language Partners 

“Charlamigos” are one-on-one language learning partners based in Tijuana, Mexico.  In Spanish, “charlar” means “to chat” and “amigos” means friends so a “Charlamigo” is like a “penpal” except you actually get to chat and become friends! As you and your new Spanish-speaking friend become “charlamigos,” you get to practice your Spanish through informal conversation and you both get to learn a new perspective on life by making friends with someone from a different culture. Your subscription to the Charlamigo service helps support working people in Tijuana. Choose someone from our roster of “Charlamigos” and our Coordinators will introduce you to them so you can arrange an initial, 30-minute conversation one-on-one. You can then sign up for more 30-minute sessions, or ask to be introduced to another “Charlamigo.”


(click on names for more info)


Daniel Watman

Dan Watman has worked as a Spanish instructor for over 20 years. A longtime resident of Tijuana, Mexico, Dan sees the purpose of language instruction as helping students establish meaningful friendships with native speakers.

Robert Vivar

Robert Vivar was deported to Mexico in 2013 after living in the USA since the age of six. Since his deportation he has dedicated his life to helping others in need, such as deported U.S. military veterans, deported mothers of U.S. citizen children, and separated families.



  • "This class is very relevant to life on the border. You'll learn a lot about what's happening in Tijuana, and an improvement in Spanish is guaranteed. The opportunity for new friendships across the border is also very present. A deeper understanding of the border and an improvement in Spanish go hand in hand in this class!"
  • "The instructor is a master teacher of Spanish, es verdad . Their skill at sensing out the learning needs and energy of individuals as well as the entire class was exceptional. His timing about correction and suggestion was terrific. The size of the class (about ten) gave everyone good opportunity to practice. The Zoom class enabled us to get to know people from all over the country as well as Mexico. The Zoom format was never a barrier to learning, but made it possible to be in the class without travel time. Working people were able to join at the end of their work day. The intermediate class is an excellent one for people who have some Spanish or want to upgrade their skills. For people who are not living in the San Diego area, the class gains an energy and immediacy from being taught by someone who lives on the border/la frontera."
  • “Centering on the common language used when we meet Mexican people at the border was especially meaningful to me. The repetitive nature of common phrases and encouragement of the teacher, all in Spanish, is the most effective way I've seen to improve on Spanish speaking.”
  • “This is an excellent course for someone who has some background in Spanish who wants to now put the language to use! The approach is immersive and the emphasis is on the spoken language. The class is engaging and interactive. I highly recommend it.”
  • “Great facilitator, evidence-based approach to learning the language in a contextualized way. The most relevant course I've found.”

Via Global Education creates opportunities to learn from local leaders and engage directly in the work of sustainable community development.  The intentional formation of community leaders — among both visiting and hosting communities —  is the focus of every trip we lead.

Program Development

Via’s unique expertise combined with collaborative input from your leaders and participants will produce a refined itinerary. We enjoy unique access to local partners and can create and coordinate all activities for in-person trips and virtual visits.

Transformational Learning

Via creates dynamic cultural exchange through presentations by local experts and partner organizations. A Via Guide will accompany your group through its entire experience to maximize the relational learning of participants.

Sustainable Development Support

Your support not only underwrites your (virtual) site visits, but also affords stipends to local community leaders; supports grassroots organizations working for social justice and sustainable community development; and helps to sustain Via International’s ongoing work with Communities, Programs, and Partners.

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