Ecuador to Portland: Tello travels to teach teenagers

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This year marks the beginning of Gabriela Tello’s journey at Lincoln, who after teaching Spanish and English to students around the world, has chosen Portland as her new home. 

After growing up in Ecuador, attending a few years in a Miami high school and graduating from Florida International University, Tello moved to Spain and taught in a high school while also teaching English to Chinese students online. 

“I love to travel,” says Tello. “That was actually one of the first ways I found out that I can teach while I’m traveling. Teaching English and Spanish was a good way for me to do that.”

Lincoln’s reputation drew Tello from Spain to Portland, especially after discovering that the goals of Lincoln’s language department lined up with her own. 

“[Lincoln] wanted to expose the students to so many things around the world, to the language, to other cultures,” explains Tello. “That really resonated with me and my idea of how we as students and educators should keep being aware of everything that is going on in the world.”

In addition to teaching her Spanish 1-2 and 3-4 classes using the textbook, Tello is also excited to teach other important topics.

“I have units that aren’t really included in the book, like Hispanic Heritage Month and why we learn Spanish, but I want students to be aware of how many countries speak Spanish, why is it such a big language and [about] different cultures,” says Tello.

What Tello is most looking forward to, however, is seeing how her students develop a love for the language.

“A lot of them are here because it is a requirement or is an elective, but I want them to really enjoy it and learn about my culture.”