Our new English teacher, Teddy!
In August, Picaflor House was very sad to say goodbye to our wonderful Programme Manager, Laura. Laura made a huge impact at the project over the last few years, helping it grow and making a real difference to the lives of the students, their families and the community. Laura also made sure all our wonderful volunteers felt at home while in Peru and ensured they had a great time. She will be greatly missed, but her legacy will remain, and Picaflor will continue to thrive thanks to her hard work and dedication!
In Laura’s absence, long-time staff member and Academic Coordinator Luz Chapi has stepped up to take on the challenges that the role requires. Luz is beloved by the students, their families, and the volunteers who come through Picaflor House, and we are excited to have her at the helm!
Picaflor English Programme Updates
Picaflor House has seen some changes to our English Language Programme since our last report!
Earlier this year, Diane joined us from the USA to continue the English learning programme. Diane’s motivation and the enthusiasm of the children made English classes fun and valuable throughout her time with them. In her work with the children, she helped them become more confident to express some emotions and concerns in English. Also, her high level of organisation helped the children understand the importance of order and acquire this habit not only in the English class, but everywhere.
Diane has now departed to spend some time in Europe, and she is missed. But her time with us has left some great systems in place from her vast teaching experience. During the recruitment process for our new teacher, Luz and Laura delivered the English classes, along with support from our volunteers. Thanks to the English Language curriculum already in place, the transition between staff went smoothly until the new teacher arrived.
We have now recruited a new teacher, Teddy Zabala! Teddy is from is from Iquitos, the northern jungle region of Peru, and he has extensive experience working with children in different cities of Peru. With his 16 years of teaching experience and ability to speak multiple languages, Teddy has settled in quickly and is very excited to start working with children. We can’t wait to see how much progress they will continue to make throughout the rest of the year!
Literacy Programme Updates
The Literacy Programme (focusing on reading and writing in Spanish), has had very good results this year. With many of the children’s family language being the native Peruvian Quechua language, the literacy classes in Spanish are an essential part of the children’s development.
This year, the reading and writing teacher Julia has worked intensively with the youngest group because many of them cannot yet read. It is a pleasure to mention that first-graders are showing great progress and can now read to an acceptable level for their age. To mention one example, first-grader Juan (not his real name) could not even write his name when we started the school year in March. Now he has greatly improved, is reading a little, and has started to write short sentences.
In the upper grades, the students are working on comprehension and grammar. Because of her hard work, Julia has seen great advancement in reading comprehension. Likewise, when the children write, they do so with only minor grammatical errors. We have found it true that if the children have a good understanding of what they read, they then start to truly enjoy reading, rather than just seeing it as work.
As part of the Programme, the children also have new books to use in their daily lessons. The books are synchronized with the curricula of the school year by grades, and teacher Julia accompanies these books with additional texts, according to what the children need most.
We hope you have enjoyed reading about what’s going on at Picaflor House! Thank you for taking the time to read our update, and as always, thank you for your continued, invaluable support. If you would like to donate, and we hope you do, please visit our page to do so!