By Karen Wong
Peru This Week
With the abundance of English skills that runs in Colegio Roosevelt, it was time to share it with the rest of the community by opening an English program called Habla Roosevelt.
There are several international schools in Lima, with students who speak English at a high level. In fact, some are accepted to many of the best schools around the world. However, a group of students at Colegio Roosevelt, decided it was time to start sharing their knowledge of English.
In March, a group of students from the Innovation Academy at Colegio Franklin D. Roosevelt, used the profit they made from six months of running a successful smoothie business on campus to create a new program. It’s called Habla Roosevelt and the purpose is to teach English to the children of the workers on campus (gardeners, janitors, technicians, drivers, etc.). It also aims to create a sense of unity throughout the school communit, by blending students, teachers, parents, workers and staff.
Currently, there are 40 students taking the English classes, two paid teachers giving the classes, and more than 30 student and teacher volunteers, who offer more personalized practice with English.
The students range from 7 up to 16 years old; because there are so many enrolled, the classes have been separated into two groups of similar ages. In those small groups, after the main teacher has given a mini lesson, students spend most of their time with the volunteers practicing pronunciation, vocabulary and the basics of English.
So, why English?
Students could’ve taught math or science, but as English speakers, they understood the value of the English language as a way to unlock a whole new world of opportunity. And the reason why so many schools in Lima focus on English is because it’s one of the most essential tools for this 21st century. If you want to travel, do research online, or even enjoy great music, English is the perfect catalyst.
With so many elite schools who focus on education in English, and being surrounded by people in their school that don’t have access to these tools, programs like Habla Roosevelt are a perfect opportunity to put students’ knowledge into practice. Plus, it’s a chance to give back to their community and expand their knowledge to generations to come.