EXPANI is an initiative started by a group of girls from my class in San Silvestre School, that aims to connect privileged students with children who wish to learn english. All of the classes are cost-free, tailored, and accommodating to the schedules, circumstances and resources of both parties involved.
Date: Bimester 3, 2020
I taught a girl called Yllari, who was 4 years old. She was only just learning to count in Spanish, so it was particularly challenging to find material that suited her. We ended up playing vocabulary games and watching kids TV shows.
Date: Bimester 1 and 2, 2021
During the first half of the second year, I helped to develop the syllabi for the classes. We met on zoom twice a week to work on PowerPoints about many topics: greetings, food, holidays, shopping, family, etc. We had to make different presentations for the three proficiency levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced. My brainstorming and teamwork skills were benefitted by this experience because of the team effort required to implement our creative ideas into the PowerPoints.
Date: Bimester 3 and 4, 2021
I was assigned a kid called Diego Alonso, who was 6 years old. This time I was able to communicate more with the mother and ask her about Diego Alonso. Everything she told me I quickly learned to be true; he was very passionate for his age, wanting to become a film director, so she advised me that anything related to Star Wars or DC comics would interest him. However, she also told me that he was very easily distracted and bored. Knowing this, I planned ahead for each class and tried to incorporate his interests into his learning, by showing pictures of Star Wars characters when learning colors, by making origami when learning animals, and by showing him catchy songs in Youtube when learning about vowel sounds. Thankfully this seemed to work and I was able to see how intelligent he was and how quickly he learned when he was stimulated. To this day, he still points out cheerily the ‘Magic E’ at the end of words from our third class whenever he spots it.
Link for the Magic E video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gp1UmVSlLJ4
Slides from the presentation where we learned about colors:
I never imagined teaching english words about the environment to a 6 year old, however he seemed very interested and by the end of the lesson it was clear that he had retained ‘sea’, ‘land’, ‘air’, ‘space’, and ‘Earth’. I tried to mix a little from our animal lessons to see what he remembered and he was able to tell me several animals that lived in the sea, land and air. His favorite concept definitely was space because it was where Star Wars took place, so he was the one who told me exactly what to draw, even details like the chord between the astronaut and the rocket!