Here's Jenni telling yall about Children's English. She's super nice.
Manna readers! I am Jenni, and one of the things I do is teach Manna’s Advanced
Children’s English class. This class is held in our library every tuesday and
thursday from 4-5:30pm. Knowing English is an extremely important and powerful
tool in Ecuador. If you know English you have better career opportunities and
generally speaking, can obtain a higher quality of life. It gives you more
options. Because of this, our English classes are some of the most popular and
English is an interesting program because parents enroll their children for
classes, not the kids themselves. The kids then are made to take extra classes
when I am sure they would rather be playing with their friends after school.
The largest class is Basic, with about 20 students, then intermediate with
about 12 students, and then mine. I have 4 kids in my class and their ages
range from 9-13 years old. I may be biased, but my students most
incredible, sweet and smartest kids I know. They behave extremely well in
classes, love to learn and pick up on everything so quickly! I am constantly
amazed by how fast they can learn this difficult language. I LOVE my class!
I will admit that English classes can get pretty boring. The past few weeks in
my english class have been very grammar heavy. We play games and have fun but
overall its been a little dry. This week I introduced cooking/kitchen
vocabulary and decided that it would be perfect to make something in class to
make things more exiting. The kids deserved a fun day. I decided on no-bake
granola bars: easy, can be made in a 1/2 hour, and delicious!
class I passed the recipe out to the kids and we translated it together, making
sure to emphasize our vocab words (to measure, cup, teaspoon, mix, etc.). When
I then announced we were going to make the bars their faces lit up: “Really,
teacher?”. Then, they got even more excited when they realized the recipe
called for peanutbutter. “You have peanut butter here?” they all asked. When I
confirmed, yes, they all broke out in excitement. “I have never tried peanut
butter before!!!” they all exclaimed. They were so excited! They
explained how they constantly see people eating peanutbutter out of the jar in
American movies. It was pretty funny.
Explaining the recipe
Showing the kids how to
measure 1 cup of cereal (in English!)
of them wanted to help!
So much giggling as they
press the bars into the pan!
loved the peanutbutter/honey mixture we used to congeal the bars
Making the granola bars with the kids
was incredibly fun. They all fought over who got to measure, mix, and press the
bars into the pan. They all got to try peanutbutter, which I then explained you
can buy here! (its just not very common to eat.) The bars sat while they took
their weekly quiz and afterwards we all hung out and enjoyed our delicious
This was by far my most fulfilling
English class. The excitement from my kids, their enthusiasm to help and learn,
and giving them an opportunity to try something new, really made me feel that
somehow, in some tiny way, I was helping make their world a little better. And
even if it was only for 30 minutes, that makes me incredibly happy.
- Love and peanutbutter -