By Penelope K.
Senora Gallardo is a Spanish teacher at Hampton Elementary School.
Penelope: How long have you taught at Hampton Elementary?
Senora Gallardo: This is my seventh year.
Penelope: Did you always plan to be a teacher?
Senora Gallardo: When I was younger, I wanted to be a veterinarian. I realized how much bloody stuff there is. Then I was a translator.
Penelope: Did you like being a translator?
Senora Gallardo: I liked being a translator.
Penelope: What did you do after being a translator?
Senora Gallardo: I was going to be an elementary teacher. Instead I became a passport teacher.
Penelope: How many languages do you speak?
Senora Gallardo: I joke that I speak 3½ because I speak Italian, English, Spanish and French, but I have not practiced French in a while.
Penelope: Do you teach languages other than Spanish?
Senora Gallardo: No, but the students try to get me to speak the other languages.
Penelope: Do you like online school or do you prefer in person school?
Senora Gallardo: I like that I don’t have to drive everywhere, but I do miss seeing the kids.
Penelope: So, do you still go to other schools?
Senora Gallardo: Virtually I meet 4 schools. Believe it or not, I used to go to more schools before.
Penelope: What are some of the things you like to do outside of school?
Senora Gallardo: Spending time with my family and watching my daughter ride her horse.
Penelope: When did she start riding?
Senora Gallardo: 1½ years ago. I asked her what she wanted to do. She said either archery or horseback riding. I didn’t want her shooting arrows everywhere.
Penelope: How many pets do you have?
Senora Gallardo: 4 pets. 3 dogs and a cat.
Penelope: What advice would you give to someone who wants to be a passport teacher?
Senora Gallardo: Be flexible. Have fun. And don't over stress things. Not everything has to be perfect. Also, have a full tank of gas.
Penelope: Where is your favorite vacation spot?
Senora Gallardo: I go to the beach each year, but my favorite is with my family.
Penelope: Where is your family?
Senora Gallardo: I don’t have family in the US. My mom and sister live in Spain and the rest of my family lives in Italy.
Penelope: With your family living so far away, what did you do for the holidays this year?
Senora Gallardo: We video chat using Whatsapp to call family. There is a 6 hour difference so when it’s the afternoon for us, they are getting ready for bed.
Penelope: Where is the furthest you have traveled in the US?
Senora Gallardo: I have only traveled on the East Coast but I want to travel farther. The furthest I’ve gone in the US is Panama City in Florida on the Gulf Coast. The water there was green and blue.