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23rd, 26th & 27th July 2021 have been days of celebration at PoppieS

23rd, 26th & 27th July 2021 have been days of celebration at PoppieS


The lists of successful candidates for the permanent position of English Teachers at Secondary Schools in Castilla La Mancha, Navarra & Madrid were published on 23rd, 26th & 27th July: CONGRATULATIONS to the 20-odd successful candidates who prepared it with PoppieS, for 2 or even 3 years because of the Covid-19! Here’s to you all!

Marilena in Castilla La Mancha

Well done, Marilena!!! You worked very hard for these two and a half years, teaching long hours at the academy, and competing against the others with few points as “baremo”. Systematic, constant, and hard-working, first on your own, then in a well-knit group giving constructive feedback to the others: Castilla La Mancha’s secondary schools are getting a brilliant teacher who will motivate her students and help them to become competent language users and succeed in their exams. Thank you for choosing me as your trainer. It’s been a real pleasure to see how some of the things I was saying you were already familiar with and others you just took and implemented.  

Carlos in Navarra:

My heartfelt Congratulations, Carlos. I remember when you first contacted me, just over two years ago. You wanted to ask me a few questions about the Poppies Foundation Plus before deciding whether it was for you. It was a particularly difficult time for me, and you showed understanding: in fact, you enrolled in the course without managing to speak to me.  And then you became part of a great group who listened to everything I said, wrote or gave you…and transformed it into something real and better.  I remember many things, but particularly how you managed to transform some of the info I gave on Canada into a delightful, entertaining unit…With just 4 points in your “baremo”: Well done on your first attempt! and, of course, thank you for your trust. Navarra is also getting a teacher who knows how to motivate and engage his students.

And then in Madrid:

Laura C

You had almost given up, hadn’t you? Didn’t even want to send me the copy of your exam at first. And now you got one of the top positions on the list. What a feat! I am so happy for you!!! Thank you for these two-turned-into-three years of trust, for the delicious fruit you and Rebeca sent us when Vernon died, for your consistency, hard work and loyalty…and this while teaching and having two little kids under your care. Another brilliant teacher for Madrid.

Rubén B

This was/ had to be your year Rubén. After having it so close in 2018. Thank you for your understanding, motivation, and the support you have always given to your classmates. And thank you for all the broadcasts on such interesting topics, and -of course- for your trust. Another excellent (a variation of Brilliant 😉) teacher who motivates his students in various ways: music, radio…you name it!

Alba C

One of the few who frequently used the forum to ask questions! Inquisitive, particularly with syntactic analysis. Although you already had some topics of your own, you were open to including some ideas from mine and, based on what you told me, that’s what you did in the exam. Then, you have worked on the syllabus and units so thoroughly, constantly asking questions and clarifications. You certainly deserve the excellent mark you got. Thank you for your trust.  

Ana A

I am beginning to repeat myself, but in our three years together, first in the 2018 call you did pass to the second exam and the year 2019-20, which the Covid turned into two you have always been conscientious, hard-working and determined. An experienced teacher who has confidence in what she does and is willing to learn. Thanks for your trust, Ana.  

Bea I

What can I say, Bea but congratulate you once and again! We’ve spent what was meant to be two academic years and became three with the Covid. You stayed with me in July 2019, together with Esther, to improve your syllabus and start preparing the units. You’ve worked hard in the preparation and have always presented the assignments I asked.  I’ve seen your daughter via Zoom when she was born and as she was growing into a beautiful one-and-a-half-year-old. Thanks for always letting me know first about your results and for implementing the things I said.

(A challenge for you all, in case you thought you were getting rid of me 😊: what type of word is “one-and-a-half-year-old” and why? Would you send me your comments, or have you had enough for the time being?)

Sara M                                                  

Hard-working, conscientious, innovative Sara: I remember the first year in the group with Carlos, Laura E and Paula when we started with the Zoom classes. In one of those classes I was thinking that we were covering a lot of things in class, and I still had to think of another activity from the PoppieS platform to fill in the 20 minutes or so still remaining. Then Carlos said he was sorry, but he had to go, and you and Laura said you had to go too. It was then that I realised that I had gone on for almost ¾ of an hour longer! So, instead of the 3 arranged hours, you’d been putting up with me for almost 4 !!!!  Thank you for picking the ideas I was suggesting, transforming them into your own and going beyond! I liked many things in your presentations, but particularly the letter to “one’s future self”.

Amy K

Proud of having you as a Zoom student, Amy. Being a native speaker, you could’ve chosen not to do most of the assignments as they were going to be assessed by a non-native, and one more prone to using British than American English! But you did hand in all those assignments, and you presented the rationale and units when your turn came. Managed to turn a usually boring grammar unit around the “present simple” into a highly interesting unit in which students are constantly being given opportunities to understand and produce functional language. !

Nuria M

Even though I had not seen you since November-December 2020, you were the first to comment on the post I wrote about the Madrid exam this year and one of the first to let me know that you had got the position. Thank you for your trust; you were always hard-working and a pleasure to have in class. I will always remember how, when you first came with me you said that flipping was fine with good, motivated students, but not with those you had that year, back in 2018-19. Later on, you mentioned that perhaps more things than you originally thought could be done with those students. And then you played an active part with the headmaster at your school to make your students realise what it meant to be a refugee. I thought that was brilliant!

Alba G

Despite missing a few classes this year, Alba, you always asked for the class recordings and applied what I said. Then, when you did the first part you didn’t want to send me the copy of your exam because as you kind of explained to me the copy was barely visible and “besides, you knew when you have not performed up to standards”. I’m glad to find that you are not always right in that appreciation and that your panel didn’t agree with you. Thank you very much for your trust!

Miriam P

Well, Miriam…it’s been a hard year for everybody, and I do know that for you it has been particularly hard. But you’ve made it! Congratulations on your success!

Celia A

This has been quite an achievement, Celia! I remember when the 5 of you, straight from the Master, first contacted me and then 4 of you came on Wednesday mornings (with Ane as the 5th member). Two of you have made it this year, the first time you sat the Competitive Exam. Well done!  

Laura F

Creative Laura, always cheerful and smiling…even when you were tired! I must thank dear Sandra GFS not only for her trust throughout all these years but also for sending you to me. I always loved that metaphor you used about students/teacher/teaching etc. and the ship. I also loved the way you were always trying to implement the “theory”, particularly ever since you experienced real classroom situations, and see the drawbacks. That’s the way, my girl! Never be afraid of trying things out. Making mistakes is essential to learn. Well done on your first attempt!

Sofía A

What I said to Celia, partially applies to you, Sofía, since you are one of that group. From what I know about you, you like competing…at least in sports. So, well done, Sofía on your first attempt. The whole group helped me try to express myself with greater clarity. Thank you, all of you.         

Raquel F

Thank you, Raquel for accepting my, sometimes harsh, criticisms. I’m glad to hear that you felt they were helping you improve. Thank you for your trust.

And I extend my thanks to

  • Patricia J., who was with me in 2016??? (I’d need to check) because she immediately let me know that she had got the position (and had previously sent me pictures of her beautiful kiddies), and
  • Eva V., who had been with me in 2016 & 2018??? (again, I’d need to check) and, when I congratulated her on her success, sent me a message that made me shed a few tears.
  • Marta P, who used the PoppieS Platform in 2018 and 2018, and replied to my congratulating her.
  • Maite C,, who followed some of the PoppieS Courses and answered when I congratulated her.

Pilar P. and any other who may have been with me at any point and has felt that my work has helped them

Congratulations to you all and Thank you: All your comments and feedback will help me see what changes I need to make.

And we’re still waiting for the results in Castilla León…so, Alvaro M, I’ll be checking but do let me know.

And to those who did not succeed:

All of you worked hard and some had family issues of various types. And then, some of you are not on that list because with 43 panels, even with them using very specific rubrics and taking into account the particularities of the exam, scores do not always match outcomes: in fairness, you should have been on the list.

Do not give up. Let’s us all, and especially me, consider what we did or didn’t do and what needs to be done next time. I’m already working on it.

Have a great summer, all of you.

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