When Martín, 12, first came to the Learning Center in the fall of 2013, he was reading at a pre-kindergarten level, even though he was in the fifth grade. Once Martín entered the Learning Center, he became a dedicated and enthusiastic learner: he has regularly attended class and he has had two years of reading growth since September 2013. In other words, Martín spent four years in public school and did not learn how to read, but after spending seven months in our Center, with one hour a day, three days a week, he became literate. This might sound surprising, but it isn’t: Martín is a smart and clever child who, with proper support and good teaching, has exceeded and will continue to exceed expectations.
Jan 27, 2015
New Year, New Teacher!
By Yspaniola - Local Team
In 2015, Yspaniola welcomes a new teacher, Willy José Estache. Willy is in his second year studying Education with a focus on the natural sciences at Universidad Tecnológica de Santiago (UTESA) in Mao. After graduation, he plans to work as a high school science teacher. Willy has always loved science, but it was his experience with Deportes para la Vida, where he has volunteered for the last seven years teaching youth about HIV/AIDS prevention through sports, that inspired him to become a teacher. Willy brings a wealth of knowledge, compassion, and respect to the Learning Center and we are excited for him to begin teaching classes.
Oct 31, 2014
An Expanded Staff
By Viviana Mardones - Teacher and Local Program Assistant
The Local Yspaniola Team
The past few months have been a time of growth and expansion for Yspaniola. In August, we welcomed four new staff members to the Yspaniola team. Sabrina Grille, our new Director of Community Education Programs, who received a Master’s degree in International Educational Development from Teacher’s College at Columbia University, will teach and direct programming in the Learning Center. We also added three Princeton in Latin America fellows, all of whom are recent college graduates and will be working with us for one year. Fellows’ responsibilities will include teaching in the Learning Center, grant writing, essay writing workshops for our university scholars, and administrative support.
The new staff is a great asset for the Learning Center, which opened in late September for the 2014-2015 school year. The new director, Sabrina, brings her knowledge and expertise to curriculum development and classroom management while the fellows contribute to lesson planning and aid in resource creation. With an expanded staff, we are able to provide greater classroom support including more individualized attention for the students. In addition, we have added a new class, Class 6, which is a guided reading club for our oldest students. The instruction in Class 6 develops critical reading and analytical skills for the older, more advanced readers, previously in Class 5.
We are excited for the progress and growth in the year to come!