This year I will be spending 10 months teaching and serving in Huehuetenango, Guatemala. I am anxious, nervous, but most importantly, excited! I have spent this past semester fundraising for the trip. The money raised will be used for school supplies for my classroom as well as travel expenses and living expenses while I am in Guatemala. I’m looking forward to teaching both P.E. and Music to students grades K-6. I have so many ideas on what to do with these students. I would like to share some of them with you, but first some more information on the school, how I found it, and why I decided to accept the position.
The school I will be teaching at is called Colegio Bilingue Esperanza, or the School of Hope. It was started by a non-profit called More Than Compassion (MTC) to help the children at the Fundacion Salvacion, an orphanage. Anyone involved with MTC is committed to providing these students with basic tools in order to have successful futures. School of Hope meets this need by providing students with a bilingual education through hiring English teachers from the states. This coming year will be the school’s third year in session. I knew about the school through a friend from Pepperdine named Kaitlyn. Upon graduation, she decided that she wanted to teach at this school in its inaugural year.I saw pictures posted on Facebook of the students she was serving and videos the school was posting about the progress of the students. I knew it was a cause in which I wanted to be involved. Before my full time student teaching, I applied for a position for the 2015 school year as an upper elementary teacher. Through an interview process, they offered me a position as a Music and PE teacher thanks to my experience in a college acapella group as well as a high school show choir. I was excited to be offered a position.
As the new Music and P.E. teacher, I have so many ideas. I am so thankful for all of the shows I have been involved in while growing up, as well as my time in singing groups. These experiences will shape how I frame my class. When you think of a P.E. class, you usually think of students running for miles and learning how to play different sports. While I think that would be a good point from which to launch, I would like to add more performing arts elements to the class. One of the classes I took at Pepperdine was called, “Dance for Musical Theater.” In the class, we learned all different genres of dance, from jazz to ballet to contemporary, and I plan on incorporating these into my class. As for Music, my ultimate goal would be to put on a show with the students. Do I know what that will look like yet? Nope, but either way I am excited to guide the students through basic theater skills such as staging and teaching them different improv games. Furthermore, I plan on teaching them basic musical theory through the use of the recorder. This will also develop reading techniques for the students.
I am so excited for what the year has in store. Be sure to check back to see updates.
For more information on how you can get involved and support the school, click on the link here.