One of the biggest problems for people like me, trying to improve their Portuguese from a reasonably solid intermediate level base, is that you can’t always find classes that cater for more advanced levels. The other issue to deal with, if you’re not permanently based here in Portugal, is that you forget much of what you’ve learnt when you return home. This was the position I was in a while back before moving here permanently.
I checked out the classes at the Centro de Línguas being planned for the time when I was due to be back in Lagos and was told that my level of Portuguese would be a bit too advanced for the classes being planned for that time. However, I was relieved to find I could have private lessons. This turned out to be the perfect option for me because it meant I could carry on learning whilst in the UK. I therefore paid for 10 lessons to be delivered via Skype. I found these worked really well for me because we discussed what I wanted to work on (mainly my speaking skills with a little grammar), and I got exactly what I asked for. Maria João, my teacher, also brought things to my attention that needed work, so, together, we came up with a set of lessons that were tailored to my needs. I was also provided with all the materials I needed.
As it turned out, my plans changed, so I didn’t use all of the lessons. But this wasn’t a problem, as I was able to have the remaining sessions I’d paid for, with the same tutor as before, face to face at the Centro de Línguas when I got back to Lagos.
I can honestly say that this was money well spent as the arrangement was very flexible, it was fun and I got exactly what I was looking for and as a result, I am now a much more confident speaker of Portuguese. So, if you haven’t considered this option, give it a go. I’m glad I did!