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Categories according to the number of people

We can allow great variability within each one of the following four categories in regards to the amount of people who form the group. From the most numerous to the least numerous are Moroccans from rural zones; Moroccans from cities; people of China; and people from Eastern Europe.

Moroccans from rural zones

Those who form this group are mainly young, single women and young, single men; and middle-aged men with families in Morocco. The clear objective of emigrating is to contribute money to the family that remains in Morocco because, as one who immigrated said to me, "with 10 euros, my family does not eat here, but they do with 10 euros in Morocco.” The strategy of entrance into Spain is generally clandestine: by boat, under trucks, or hidden in other places. They know that this strategy may be accompanied with risking their lives. They reason that although 10, 50, or 70 die per year en route, there are many more who make it.

If the destination is not Spain, it is Europe, or wherever there is work. The demands of the market move the migratory flows. As one immigrant explained: "Spain is first, it is one day away from Morocco, if there is no work, I have a cousin in Holland, I go there, it is four days from Morocco. The farther, the better.” The emigrant perceives the move as temporary, while maintaining the plan to return to Morocco. This temporality varies, sometimes lasting until retirement. Finding work is not very difficult: women do domestic service, taking care of children or the elderly. Men work sporadically as unskilled physical laborers.

Spanish acquisition

Moroccans generally go to class until they find a stable job, which can take months depending on the status of the labor market; i.e. the amount of available work to the amount of workers ratio. They learn enough of the language to manage simple phrases in a purely instrumental way. After they find work, they learn to handle specific and concise vocabulary. As one worker put it: "Learning to speak Spanish well is difficult, but no problem at work. My boss always understands me and I understand him.” This is because the communication with the boss is limited to receiving concrete, work-related orders.

The people of this group rarely go to class to reach higher-level Spanish. Once they find work, they do not have much free time. The work days are long, often distant from their places of residence, and when they return home they must prepare supper and food for the following day. Furthermore, because the expressive communication will be with relatives and friends from Morocco, there is little relation with the native population during times of rest or leisure. Exceptions are when men enter into relationships with Spanish women. These relationships rarely end in marriage; but however transitory the engagement may be, practice with the language produces an important qualitative jump.

Moroccans coming from large cities

Young, unmarried women and men, or parents of family constitute this group; the majority of whom have an education. The objective to emigrate is not economic, but rather a change of life; to improve the conditions of life for themselves or their children. The entrance strategy is to obtain a tourist visa, without any intention of ever returning. They do not use safety-risk strategies. "If I come here, it is for a better life than in Morocco. If I come in boat, and I die, it is no longer a better life.” The destination is not Spain; it is Europe, where they can find a job. Members of this group speak correct French, so they most often choose Belgium and France as their new country. Although their emigration plan does not include returning to Morocco, the affective bond with the country of their birth will always remain and it is always longed for. While they may visit the old country, the plan is to initiate a new life in a new place.

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Source:  OpenStax, Immigration in the united states and spain: consideration for educational leaders. OpenStax CNX. Dec 20, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11150/1.1
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