Find out more about the Collage team
Co-founder and Director
I’m Emilie, co-founder and Director of Collage. Originally from the US, I arrived to Barcelona in 2002 fresh out of Haverford College, where my studies centered around urban spaces and community development, and specifically about the role of art in education and building communities.
When I met Kate Simer in 2003 I found a kindred spirit. We quickly discovered that what we really wanted was to create a community-focused, hands-on educational space where we could teach English the way we saw really worked: through art, through play, through fun - inspiring our students to be curious and letting that be what propels them into true language learning.
In 2005 we founded Collage. Since then I have worked with hundreds of teachers and educators, moved our innovative English programs into over 20 schools, and, most importantly, had the joy of teaching hundreds of students what I love most: a love of language, self-expression, curiosity and creativity.
One of the things I enjoy most about Collage is watching the growth that happens. Our programs don’t live in a vacuum; learning is never static and I don’t believe methodologies should be either. This means that as the years pass and our teaching community shifts and changes, the world around us shifts and changes, we do as well. Constantly adapting to the needs of our students, letting them lead their own learning process; always trying to be attuned and open to the knowledge and resources that the whole team is bringing into Collage year after year, and learning alongside our students.
Creating Collage, and then witnessing it take on its own life, has been one of my greatest joys. For me, the joy is in being able to be present for that process; create a space for it.
Along with Collage my other passion is words. I am a writer, translator and editor, and have the great pleasure of co-editing Barcelona’s only English-language literary magazine, @parenthesesmagazine . The writing community that has grown up around Collage has been one of my cornerstones in Barcelona.
Last, but not least, I am Pau’s mama and Joan’s partner, both of whom I love to get lost with!
School coordinator & Lead Teacher
Hi! My name is Ellie and this year I am the Collage school coordinator as well as a lead teacher. I have always had a wonder for the world that has taken me to many places and down many roads. Initially I chose to explore and express this through film and the arts, studying Film in Bristol. The years following my degree I explored many options, and although my interest and involvement in the arts remains to this day, I found nothing as rewarding, interesting and important as allowing children to discover and experience that same wonder and excitement about the things around them.
I have worked in schools in India, on farms and forest schools in the UK, and summer camps across Europe before completing my primary PGCE in Bath. After many years of working in schools, I formed a strong interest in alternative education.
I moved to Barcelona 6 years ago and have worked with children of all ages; teaching, caring for babies, working in a bilingual Montessori school, taking teenagers on adventures in the Alps, and babysitting for many families. I have been at Collage for 5 years, teaching in the Little Faces, Little Actors and Jitterbugs programs, as well as working as the Little Faces Program Coordinator.
I am excited to be more involved in the management of the school this year. I continue to be amazed and inspired by working in education, both the children and myself are constantly learning and exploring, and having a lot of fun at the same time!
Program coordinator, Lead Teacher & Designer
Hi! I'm Vicki and I'm a lead teacher and program coordinator for our Jitterbugs and Little Faces programs. I'll also be doing graphic design and marketing this year. This is my sixth year at Collage, with a little break in the middle when my son Max was born. I'm passionate about teaching English through creativity, play, imagination and fun.
A few years ago I discovered the amazing world of Process Art (art that is about the making and the doing, rather than the finished product) and love including messy invitations to create in our classes. I've been teaching English in Barcelona for 15 years.
Outside of Collage I'm a children's illustrator and also create sewing patterns to make your own soft toys @andapandapatterns
I'm excited about this new school year, the opportunities in all the changes and the Collage community coming back together.
Program coordinator & Lead Teacher
Hello! I'm Anna and this will be my sixth year working at Collage. I am the Dynamic English program coordinator which I really, really love doing.
I am from Brighton in the south of England, but have travelled extensively before settling here in Barcelona. Travel and creativity have always been my passions and it is these things that I naturally bring to the classroom.
I have been teaching English for 10 years, both here in Barcelona and before in Argentina. I teach not only children but adults too; all ages, levels and professions, with the constant goal of making learning enjoyable and specific to each student’s needs.
I have always been involved in the arts, from photography and film, to painting and illustration; my current personal project is @_paint_and_stitch_ , bespoke clothing and bag designs.
Despite the recent strange times we have all had to face, I’m confident that this new year is going to be a great one, looking forward to seeing you all soon!
Program coordinator & Lead Teacher
Hi, I’m Joana, I’m a theater artist, teacher & clown who loves playing with puppets, dancing and finding new ways to communicate with other humans.
I was born and raised in Portugal and have lived in India and the United States where I studied theater at Bennington College.
Speaking English fluently gave me access to a lot of amazing educational and professional opportunities and I am excited to open up a bit of that world for little ones (and big ones- I also teach theatre to adults!) I have taught English in UK and courses in the US, before moving to Barcelona to teach English and study Sensorial Language and Poetics of Play at the Teatro de los Sentidos/ Univ. of Girona.
My goal as a teacher is to create an environment where children feel safe enough to express themselves, share their imaginary worlds with others, make mistakes and learn together.
I look forward to heading the Little Actors program this year, and to continuing growing with the Collage community!!
Hello! My name is Sophie and this is my second year working at Collage.
I spent my childhood growing up in a village surrounded by the beautiful countryside in the South of England. I attended Art classes from the age of 6. Art, craft and upcycling are my passions. I started an IG page with some crafts I made during quarantine - @sophie.artsandcrafts
I also have a big heart for people and show this through my various voluntary roles over the years in local charities. I have studied foundation degrees in Art and in Art Therapy and then went on to achieve a degree in Social Sciences.
My teaching experience includes giving English classes to adults with learning difficulties, assisting in Art classes for people with Cerebral Palsy and teaching Creative English classes to kids of all ages. This year I am excited to teach Dynamic English, Little Faces and assist in Little Actors!
I feel it's so important for children to be able to express themselves through creative means. With art there is no right or wrong; it allows freedom; it knows no boundaries.
I moved to sunny Barcelona seven years ago and live with my two adorable adopted cats called Mango and Maki. I look forward to another year at Collage!
I’m a Mexican American who has lived in Barcelona for 13 years. I’ve taught English to students of all ages and backgrounds for twenty years now. I started giving private English classes to children when I was in high school; later on I obtained my degree in Hospitality Management in Miami, Florida. I worked in tourism for a while, but life drew me back to teaching.
I obtained my Cambridge Celta Certificate at International House Barcelona. I worked at the IEN-North American Institute for 11 years teaching children ages 4-9 year-olds, juniors and teens. I’ve also taught adults basic, pre-intermediate, intermediate, upper-intermediate and advanced levels.
I love to cook and try new recipes. Listening to music, singing and making some beats is something I enjoy doing in my free time. I appreciate art, I take pleasure in creating fun crafts with kids. This is my second year at Collage and I am delighted to be part of this creative, ingenious, originative team.
Lead Teacher & Community Team Facilitator
Hi I'm Ali, I'm a lead teacher at Collage and the Community Team Facilitator. This year is my 4th year at Collage and have always loved the creative and holistic ethos of teaching here!
I was born and raised in London in the UK and moved here 5 years ago. Having always spent the summers of my childhood in the South of Spain I developed a special connection to this country and couldn't wait to explore more.
I am a life coach, a passionate mental health advocator and practitioner of yoga, meditation and dance. My intention in the classroom is to nurture the emotional awareness and resilience of students as much as the acquisition of their language skills.
I run workshops for adults, teens and accompany individually, to foster a deeper connection to oneself and to others to enable one to live a more joyful and fulfilling life. You can find me at: @ali.olivier
I am extremely excited for this year ahead as we come together to create and support one another along our new normal journey!
Hi, I’m Mike! Born in Boston, Massachusetts and now living in Barcelona for the last 4 years, I am proud to be a member of Collage’s incredible community. Beyond being an educator at Collage, I am also an artist and game designer who is constantly trying to find ways to use art and creative play to help build community and empower others.
Back in the US I was the Director of Kids Off Broadway, my hometown's Parks and Rec Dept summer theater program, as well as developing the arts program for Adventure Time After-school Programs in Oakland, CA.
You can find my artwork on Instagram @haasleblog
Carlos Adán Cabrera
Creative Writing Workshops
My name is Carlos, but my professional moniker is C. Adán Cabrera. I've been teaching creative writing workshops at Collage since 2016. I was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, and have been living in Barcelona since 2011. I earned my BA in English from UCLA and my MFA from the University of San Francisco in 2010. How time flies!
My main interests are anything involving creative writing and literature. My debut collection of short fiction, Books Can Only Take You So Far, is forthcoming in 2021. I'm also hard at work on my second collection of short stories. I am also a freelance translator and translate from Spanish, French and Catalan into English. I also have the habit of reading several books at the same time: normally a book of short stories, a novel and a nonfiction book simultaneously.
I feel fortunate to work with amazing and talented students. Every creative writing workshop I lead leaves me feeling inspired and rewarded! The writers I work with come from all walks of life and work hard to improve their craft and tell their stories in a way that's well-written and well-crafted. My teaching philosophy when it comes to creative writing has always been the same: write about what you're afraid of and write from the heart. Because yes, your story matters!