The Students of One, Two…Tree! Speak Up!

The students of One, Two, Tree! tell us about their English classes!  

 

We interviewed two One, Two…Tree! students to hear about their experiences learning English with our English teacher volunteers in Santiago, Guatemala.

 

Here’s what they had to say:

(Their answers are translated from Spanish)

 

Q: Hello! Thanks for doing this interview with us today! Could you introduce yourselves?

A: Hello! My name is Manuel Ixbalán. I am twelve years old. I have English lessons 2 times per week with One, Two…Tree!  

A: Hello, my name is Silvia Saquid. I am twelve years old. I have lessons 2 times a week.

Teaching English in Guatemala

Students Learning English in Guatemala

 

What is your favorite English lesson so far? Why?

Manuel: I like all the classes because we learn about many different topics.

Silvia: I think all the classes are my favorite because the activities are fun and we learn about many interesting topics. We learn how to talk about our family, what we like to do, and talk about nature.

 

What is your favorite English word? Why? How did you learn it?

Manuel: “Great”, because I use it to say that things are always great, like when I say something is great or stupendous. I heard it in some videos, and then I asked Gracia (my teacher) what it meant, and I liked to start to use it.  

Silvia: “Happy”, because everyone is happy when we come to English classes! We learned it in the class about emotions and colors. Happiness is represented by the color yellow.

 

Teaching English in Guatemala

Teaching English in Guatemala

 

 

Do you like learning from English teacher volunteers from other countries? What have you learned from them?

Manuel: Yes, I like it! Teacher Lily told me her house is next to Queen Elizabeth’s.

Silvia: I like it, because they talk to us about different things that we didn’t know, and also some of them are interested about the things that we do too.

 

What kind of games or activities do you enjoy playing in the classroom to help you learn English?

Manuel: I like all the activities. I really like to write on the worksheets and mime.

Silvia:  I really like it when they give us homework and explain it well so that we learn to do it ourselves, and that way we can remember the topics when we are at home alone. I also like when we spend time taking care of the plants after class.

 

English Class Students

English Class Students

 

What is your favorite part of studying with One, Two…Tree!?

Manuel:  Learning more English! And doing exercises in front of the class, because it helps us lose the fear of speaking in English and participating in public.

Silvia:  When we go to write on the board or participate in front of everyone. Because it helps me lose my fear of speaking in public in English

 

Would you like to say anything to your One, Two…Tree! Teachers?

Manuel: That they keep doing their work! I’m really happy to participate in the classes.

Silvia:  I would tell them thanks for creating this English course, and they are helping us a lot to learn the English language. They are giving us an incredible opportunity because not many think about teaching English to children because in schools we do not have many English teachers. And here we learn and have fun too.

 

Learning English in Guatemala

Learning English in Guatemala

 

Thank you so much Manuel and Silvia for these thoughtful and insightful answers!

We are so proud of all of our students for studying hard and learning more and more English with our dedicated English Teacher Volunteers here in Santiago.

If you’re interested in having an impact in the community of Santiago, or would like to learn more about volunteering with us, please send us an email to: guatemala@onetwo-tree.com 

Collaborating and Learning Together at Our New Learning Center

Our Learning Center as a Collaborative Space 

 

Our English Learning Center opened in Santiago Atitlán in February with the intention to provide more English classes to more students, both children and adults of all levels. Now, we also use the space for various community development and learning opportunities. 

 

There are currently not many available spaces for workshops and cultural activities in the area, so we wanted to open our doors for various events where the people of Santiago can come and enjoy a safe learning space. 

 

Our main values are collaboration, initiative, adaptability and respect. We follow these values in every thing we do from teaching, to meeting new people, to hosting workshops and working with local families. Our ultimate goal is to support community empowerment and to provide a platform for intercultural exchanges in Santiago.

 

English Learning Center Workshop

English Learning Center Workshop

 

Contributing to the Community’s Empowerment  

When we are looking to collaborate on an event or workshop, we aim to focus on the community’s empowerment first and foremost.

In May, we collaborated with a local writer, Vincent Stanzione, who has devoted his life to write about Santiago’s culture and traditions.

Over the span of two days, Vincent encouraged the audience to write their stories, since he believes that we all have a story to share. He shared mindset tips, writing habits, and he explained character roles in stories, such as the character of the hero as a role to be inspired by when writing. He shared some literary resources and engaged the audience through various writing exercises.

 

Writing Workshop in Santiago

Writing Workshop in Santiago

 

The audience was full of people of various ages from the community. Some of our teen and adult students from the Center attended, as well as a large group of students from a nearby highschool. Some other local writers also attended to get to know and collaborate with other passionate writers.

A few of the special guests that attended were local writer Alexwho shared a beautiful poem during the event; Señora Argentina, who is one of the hosts for our volunteers and was a teacher in the village for many years; Isaías, who is the librarian of Puerta Abierta and is publishing his very first children’s book this year called Matz, focusing on Tz’utujil culture. All of our English teacher volunteers also attended and participated in the workshop, as they are an integral part of the development of our Learning Center, and they were also able to take the opportunity to learn from the talented people of Santiago.

 

English Teacher Volunteers at Workshop

English Teacher Volunteers at Workshop

 

Building A Safe Space for the Community

Overall, the feedback after the event was very positive, and a few participants asked to be part of further workshops. We encouraged them to come up with a few ideas to lead potential workshops with the support of our English teacher volunteers who will assist with the organization of the events.

Currently, we have another event being planned to introduce participants to the art of mural painting run by a local artist, Bárbara Sosof.

These events are a great opportunity for our volunteers and our teachers, as we get to know even more people in the community, acquire new skills (as teachers we love to learn too!) and are able to have an even bigger impact in Santiago.

If you would like to be part of our Learning Center, please email us here: guatemala@onetwo-tree.com