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Honduras: Education | Global Exchange

Honduras: Education | Global Exchange | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

This semester in history I was required to read the Narrative of Fredrick Douglass. Fredrick Douglass valued education because as a slave the right of an education was withheld from him. He believed that equality is not possible when some members of society are educated and others are not. Those who are not educated are left ignorant to the opportunities that can better the quality life that they were born into. Fredrick Douglass believed that learning to read and write was the greatest contributing factor to attaining his freedom and improving his condition of life. That being said, many Hondurans living in poverty are not provided with the opportunity of an education because it is not accessible. According to the article, more than half a million Hondurans are illiterate and Honduras is the second poorest country in Central America. I have been to Honduras and have seen it first hand. Poverty is a cycle, if there are no opportunities for people to gain an education, there are no opportunities to break the vicious cycle and live a better future. The article confirmed what I already know about the problems of education in Honduras; there is a sufficient part of the population that does not have access to an education and a scarcity of resources. Previously, I have not considered that many children do not attend school because they have to work to support their families. If education was better accessible and of greater quality then maybe families would value education and eventually break the cycle of poverty. 

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1,000 Schools

Watch our quick update from Balsamo Village in Honduras where volunteers and community members have been working together tirelessly to build a school for 30...
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

I found this video very informative.  I did not consider the lack of education in Honduras as a contributing factor of gang violence and population growth. The fact that the Honduran government provides teachers for villages in remote areas but can not provide schools or locations is very sad because many children are not receiving a quality education. In the video it mentioned that some villages hold classes in pool halls, bars, and even wooden shacks. Communities are attempting to provide their children with an education but lack the resources. Without a proper building how can a school keep supplies? Without government funding how can teachers obtain teaching materials? I went to a public school where I was provided with consistency, shelter, clean water, bathrooms, and proper instructional materials. Therefore, it is very hard for me to fathom going to school in these conditions. There is no sense of safety and students’ physiological needs are not being met. I am very proud to be a member of Students Helping Honduras and I hope that 1,000 schools, the goal to make resources available for 1,000 remote villages in Honduras is reached by the year 2020. 

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Honduras - EDUCATION

Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

Before investigating education in Honduras I was not even aware that there was an education system. Therefore, I found it very interesting that there was not a national education system before the late 1950’s and that there was education reforms in 1957.  The information provided by counrtystudies.us confirmed what I already know about the current poor conditions of the Honduran educational system. When I joined the organization Students Helping Honduras I became well aware of the lack of schools, teachers, and materials, as well as the reality that a quality education is not accessible to most. I found it bothersome that the Honduran constitution states that a “ free primary education is obligatory for every child between the ages of seven and fourteen,” because in rural areas of Honduras schools are not accessible and children have to walk a far and dangerous distance to the nearest school. Therefore, children are either not attending or compelled to be in danger. I think that the hardest part of reading this particular document was when it stated, “ a significant percentage of children do not receive formal education. Especially in rural areas, schools are not readily accessible. When they are accessible, they often consist of joint-grade instruction through only the third grade. Schools are so understaffed that some teachers have up to eighty children in one classroom.” When I went to Honduras last winter I traveled to Balsamo, a village in a very rural area of Honduras. I spent a week building a three-roomed schoolhouse side-by-side with the families and children of the community. I left Honduras knowing that I contributed to building a school that more than 300 hundred children would be attending. I now realize the children of Balsamo are still not going to receive a formal and quality education because of the lack of classrooms and teachers. I am not discouraged because any education is better than no education at all, but I cannot help but wish that the organization I am a part of could do more for the village. I found it very disheartening that with the lack of quality public education that there is skepticism regarding the quality of private education because it is viewed as a “profit-making enterprise.” I would like to think that the children who are privileged enough to attend school would at least be provided with a good education. 

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Dual immersion school like one proposed in Greeley working well in Grand ... - Greeley Tribune

Dual immersion school like one proposed in Greeley working well in Grand ... - Greeley Tribune | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Dual immersion school like one proposed in Greeley working well in Grand ...
Greeley Tribune
Romero and Maplewood are the schools in District 6 with a percentage of English Language Learners most similar to the Dual Immersion Academy.
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

Being bilingual in the work environment is vital. … It has made it normal for (my children) to be in a mixed group of kids. They never look at anybody around them differently.” I had the privelage of being raised very accepting and blind to individual differences. I believe that the diversity I was exposed to all of my life turned me into the person I am today. I strongly believe in the importance of multi-culturalism in the classroom and in exposing students to individual differences as exciting and interesing rather than just "different." I have been observing a sixth grade math class with two new ESOL students, both whom moved to the United States this year. The way the students are interacted within the classroom is very upsetting to me. Not that it is in anyones control but the two students seem to be outcasted by peers. The majority of the students in the class speak spanish at home and some were ESOL students in the past. Students are not encouraged to interact with the students even though they are capable. I think that if students were encouraged to speak both langauges in the classroom there would be a greater sense of community within the classroom. Students who are not yet adequate in English would feel more welcomed by peers and more comfortable in the classroom. 

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Being Bilingual May Boost Your Brain Power

Being Bilingual May Boost Your Brain Power | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
People who speak more than one language seem to perform better on a variety of cognitive tasks.
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

There are so many benefits to bilingual education, one important aspect to think about when adcovating for bilingual education is how it benefits the brain. The article describes the function of the brain of a bilingual while speaking either language and how it serves as a mental exerecise. If bilingual education can improve brain function and control, why shouldn't it be implemented in schools everywhere?  In my opinion, the discovery of the benefits of bilingual education concerning the brain is very exciting and can revolutionize the way America approaches education, as a future educator I find this very thrilling but it also makes me very nervous. When I think about how beneficial bilingual education is and how it would improve education for all students, I also have to think about how I would need to prepare myself as a future educator. If I am advocating bilingual education as a future teacher, I will need to further my professional development so that I am capable of facilatating dual-language learning. 

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Kenneth Peterson's curator insight, November 11, 2013 11:38 AM

The earlier we can expose our children to a second or third language, the more they gain

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Effects of Multilingualism

Natasha Paulmeno W/R#11, TA 2 Comm231, Sec0201 A#1 Rewrite: Multilingualism Story Nov. 6 2013 II.

STORY: Effects of Multilingualism

Millennials discuss the significance of multilingualism Students contemplate future impact of multilingualism Millennials consider foreign language useful, but not mandatory Daniel Rivera represents a trend in many university students who consider multilingualism a beneficial trait to have in today’s globalized society. Rivera, a junior mechanical engineering major, was born in Italy; he is currently taking Italian classes to improve his writing, which he hopes will create more job opportunities in the future. He believes that multilingualism connects cultures and people around the world. Rivera exemplifies the multiculturalism and ambition that characterizes the Millennial Generation. Millennials tend to agree that knowing multiple languages can be advantageous in many situations, but being unilingual is not necessarily detrimental. “I think it’s a plus if you have two languages but it’s not a minus if you don’t,” said Grace Amoh, a university student. “It’s neutral.” Amoh suspects that learning a foreign language broadens perspective and induces cultural awareness. Future significance “[Multilingualism] makes you a little less ignorant of the world,” said Steven Montgomery, a junior environmental science major. Montgomery admires the international students at the university, especially their English literacy and accomplishments in a foreign country. Bismark Yeboah, an international student from Ghana, speaks Twi, Ewe and English, and is currently learning French. Yeboah, a junior economics and finance major, said that being able to speak English is an effective way to become involved in the U.S. economy. Additionally, Yeboah uses his multilingualism to unify Africans who speak different dialects. Sophomore business major James Dorrian said, “Speaking another language could help you get a job in business or something along those lines because you can do more international things.” Despite the consensus, many students do not study foreign languages after completion of their academic requirements. Bilingual is brainier Victoria Bell, a junior elementary education major and native Spanish speaker, understands the dual-advantage of bilingualism. “When you speak more than one language they say that your brain thinks in both languages, which is like extra thinking,” Bell said. Studies show that children who learn two languages from a young age may benefit from superior brain function. Bell plans to use her native tongue to communicate with parents and children who only speak Spanish, which is common in many school districts. Many college students do not enroll in foreign languages and agree that this is not harmful to their futures. Yet Millennials appreciate the benefits multilingualism can produce, especially with today’s highly interrelated global community.

Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

This Article written by a fellow student at the University of Maryland explores the views of UMD  stundents on the significance and impact of multilingulaism. The article is significant because it explores bilingual/multilingual education, currently a "hot topic" in education, from the perspective of students. Most articles I have read on the topic have been from the perspectives of educators and researchers, I think that it is important to hear the outlook of bilnigual/multilingual education from the students who it has impacted first hand.  In this ariticle the students themselves give reasons to why learning multpile languages is beneficial in their own lives. One reason came up in this article that I have not yet come across in my research is that learning a foreign langauge, "broadens perspective and induces cultural awareness," one student stated that it makes you, " a little less ignorant of the world." I personally argree that cultural awareness is very important and I can now add it to the many reasons I support bilingual education. Another student mentions that knowing multiple languages can help you get a job, he specifically states how it can help in buisness because you can do more international work. I liked that the article brought attention to the topic of bilingual education from students perspective, specifically those who are thinking about the future. 

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Joyce Esi Bronteng's curator insight, September 22, 2015 3:27 PM

I am also glad this is coming from students and not researchers. As testified by the students, bilingualism or multilingualism does not take anything from a person but rather an added value. As evidenced in the life of these students especially the Ghanaian. It makes a person versatile in terms of communication. I hope readers of this piece especially bilingual parents will see this and expose their children to  the languages they  (parents) speak and not restrict them to the learning of only the  English language as many are doing currently.

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Timeline Photos - Humans of New York | Facebook

Timeline Photos - Humans of New York | Facebook | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
"I used to be a preschool teacher, but I got fired."
"What happened?"
"Well, I decided that I wanted to have a socially conscious class. So we learned...
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

This teachers story was very eye opening for me. I am a big dreamer, when I think about myself as teacher I think about how I am going to help students thrive academically, while facilitating social and emotional development, and bringing social consciousness into the classroom. I wanted to be like the teacher who shared this story. I agree that children should be taught to be socially concscious about things like homelessness and discrimination. I do think that maybe diving into social conflicts such as the topic of Trayvon Martin may have crossed the line because there are differences amoung the opinions of families. After reading this I believe that if I am going to teach social consciousness in the classroom, I will not beable to be as radical as I imagined myself being previously.  I still believe teaching social consciousness is possible but finding an approach that is not confrontational or conflicting to the views and values of families is necessary. 

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Use the Common Core to Focus on Integrity - Whole Child Education

Use the Common Core to Focus on Integrity - Whole Child Education | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
We call on educators, policymakers, business leaders, families, and community members to work together on a whole child approach to education.
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

This article gave me confidence in teaching to the "whole child." I loved how the author recognized a way that common core can provide opportunities to teach integrity and ethics. The article states that article provides questions that teachers can use  as a guide when intergrate ethics and integrity, "naturally" across all disciplines. "Integrating questions centered around "what's right?" or "what kind of person do you want to be?" often helps bring alive content areas for young people." I believe that if students are given a reason to care then there is a greater chance that they will want to engage in learning.  Personally, I think the hardest part of teaching to the "whole child" is figuring out how to approach it. While interviewing a sixth grade math teacher that I have spent the past two months observing I asked, 'what is the hardest part of teaching?" she told me that for her it was the pressure of meeting the standards and preparing students for standarized testing. I realized then, that there are going to be a lot of obstacles when I am a teacher because my goal is to teach to the "whole Child" and not focus primarily on academics. How will I approach teaching to the "whole child" while making sure I am meeting academic standards? I think the article is a great tool for teachers to use,  I am confident that as I develop proffesionally I will refer to the article as a guide. The article ends by stating that the priocess of integrating ethics into common core will "help teachers reconnect with why they love their subject matter and why they love to teach." The pressures of teaching may cause individuals to lose sight of why they chose the career, teaching to the "whole child" can be as beneficial for teachers as it is for students. 

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Teaching Your Students How to Have a Conversation

Teaching Your Students How to Have a Conversation | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
I was recently in a third grade classroom and was struck by the presence of rules that were posted for how to have a conversation. The poster said, "Each person must contribute to the discussion but
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

The article expresses the importance of teaching students how to have a conversation, another example of teaching to the “whole child.” Although the article does not include evidence, I agree that each generation is losing the ability to effectively hold conversations and with the explanations the article provides for why. Teaching to the “whole child” includes teaching social skills that are important in order to become functioning members of society. I value the importance of conversation because it is the only way to effectively communicate and resolve conflict. I found that the communication classes such as speech that I have taken as requirements in college are valuable to my future career. I cannot be an effective teacher if I am not able to communicate effectively with students, families, and co-workers.  I think that communication skills should not be taught only in higher education, but throughout an individuals entire educational career. 

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Update from Balsamo Village, Honduras

Watch our quick update from Balsamo Village in Honduras where volunteers and community members have been working together tirelessly to build a school for 30...
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

Last winter, I traveled to the village of Balsamo, Honduras with the organization Students Helping Honduras to help build a school. There is no better feeling in the world than knowing that I assisted with providing the children of Balsamo an education and a brighter future. I will never forget the excitement of each and every child in the village, as they watched and even participated in the construction of their school.  Watching the video is very exciting for me because when I visited Balsamo I fell in love with the community and over the week I grew close to various members of the community, especially the children.  Before watching the video I was not aware that Balsamo confronted SHH for help. It does not surprise me because what I loved about Balsamo was that the community was very close, everyone cared for one another and looked out for each other’s families. The community was a family and it was something I couldn’t help but be a bit envious of, I wished that at home my community were as tight-knit and caring as Balsamo.  It made sense to me that the adults in the community would come together and approach SHH. I am glad that the village of Balsamo, a community in poverty, was aware of the value of education and reached out for help. Now their children have access to an education, increasing the opportunities of a higher-level education and a better future.

 

Personally, I did not value education when I was younger and that troubles me now. How could I take for granted something that others wish for? I can honestly say that I value education more now than I ever did before I went to Honduras. I think that if teachers found ways to expose students to organizations like Students Helping Honduras and students became more involved in improving the education and lives of others, then students would be more likely to understand the real value of education. Students who value education are more likely to succeed. 

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Improving education standards in Honduras: A long road ahead

Improving education standards in Honduras: A long road ahead | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Universal access to education in Honduran rural areas like Nahuaterique is a goal yet to be achieved
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

The way the article opened was very different from the majority of the writings I have found on the topic because the author began with a story of an individual child, Juan, providing the reader with a closer look into the life of a child living in a remote rural area in Honduras. Juan’s story describes the hardships children face everyday in rural Honduras in order to attend school. The story confirmed what I already know about the accessibility of schools in rural areas of Honduras. When I traveled to Honduras with Students Helping Honduras, we worked on building a school in a remote village called Balsamo, the community approached SHH for help because the children of the village had to travel many miles to attend the closest school. The article provides a direct quote by primary school director Marco Antonio Perez Ventura, “We want to guarantee high scholastic standards, but the main problem is funding. We have no money for textbooks, nor for school equipment and building renovations." Being a part of Students Helping Honduras I was already aware of the problems of education in Honduras because the purpose of the organization is to send student volunteers to help with the construction of schools in rural areas. After the trip individual teams raise money for school supplies (desks, textbooks, paper, chalkboards, etc.) for the school that they helped build. The main problem is the shortage of funding and that is why the organization was founder Shin Fuyjiyama started the organization. The article mentions that many students leave work at the age of thirteen to start work because there is no access to secondary education. I was excited to learn about IHRE while reading the article because it’s goal is to provide opportunities for higher education, Students Helping Honduras primarily provides villages with primary schools. I was not aware of the community –based program PROHECO before reading the article. I was disappointed to hear that there is a lot of corruption in the program. Although the politics of education and programs in Honduras may be flawed, there is an increasing awareness of the importance of education and that is the first step to improvement.

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Honduras Education System

Honduras Education System | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

I traveled to Honduras with the University of Maryland’s student organization Students Helping Honduras to help build a three-room school house for the village of Balsamo I saw first hand the poverty and lack of education. When I found the website Classbase, providing information on the education system of Honduras, I was taken aback that Honduras had an education system. I was aware that the government provided teachers for villages with schoolhouses but I assumed that since education was not available for all, that the country lacked a legitimate education system. Learning this new information has increased my passion to do what I can as a member of Students Helping Honduras to increase the number of schools throughout the country. Knowing that the education system is a lot like the education system in the United States, where primary school is mandatory, made it even more bothersome that children could not make it to school because of the far distances and dangers of traveling in a country that suffers from serious gang violence. Learning the education system has primary, middle, secondary, and University levels was both distressing and encouraging. I know that not many children can make it to school in order to finish the primary level that is mandatory, so I assume that the middle and secondary levels of education are rarely reached. I found it encouraging because I think there is hope that the education system can approve and students can get an education at every level. I found it interesting to see the grading system, very similar to the grading system in the United States, I haven’t even previously given thought to a grading system because of the conditions of the schools, lack of materials and locations, and lack of attendance. I now have a better sense of the problems on education in Honduras, the education system is not absent, but because of the poverty the country cannot provide the means to a competent and accessible education.

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BLPSP | Bilingual Primary School Project

Bilingual Spanish Primary state school 2 hopefully open in London 2015. Info eve 25 Oct 6.30pm 29 Rhodesia Rd SW9 9DT http://t.co/ovInlO7B3Q
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

In my opinion, the design of a curriculumn that will be taught in more than  one langauge is the right approach to bilingual education and bilingual schools. Langauges should not just be taught starting at a younger age, students should be immersed in a second language. The aim of the BLPSP is to have students not only fluent in another language but also fluent in grammer. There are instances where childern who grow up bilingual, speaking one langauge at home, another at school, only learn the grammer of the language taught at school. Although they are fluent in both languages it does not always mean they can read and write. That is one of the many reasons bilingual education is so important. I personally have several friends who were raised speaking Spanish at home but do not know how to read or write it because they were only taught English in school. When I approached them about bilingual education, they all agreed that they wished they were taught to read and write in both languages. 

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Between Two Worlds: Bilingual Education in the Nation's Capital (HQ)

My Honors Capstone about dual-language programs in DC
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

I was surprised to find out that there are already 400 dual-langauge schools in the United States, that was very exciting news to me. I hope that the number increases every year. I think that the 50/50 approach to bilingual education, where fifity percent of the content is taught in english and fifty percent is taught in spanish, is a great way to approach bilingual education. I think in the DC area because of the high population of spanish speakers, it is important to have bilingual schools. At the same time I think that bilingual schools are beneficial to all students regardless of the area they live in. Hearing that the schools were grades k-8 was a little dissapointing, I believe bilingual education in highschool would have many benefits and if students did not keep practicing a second language they could lose some of the skills and become less fluent. The video brought up a very important point, students who are english language learners learn better in their native language. ESOL students are not given the same oppurtunities in education when they are just immersed in learning in english rather than being taught english while learning. That is one of the reasons why I think bilingual education is important, it provides better oppurtunities for ESOL students to become sucessfull learners. The video gave the oppurtunity for viewers to look inside the classrooms of bilingual schools and see first hand how the curriculumn is taught to students, it also showed how the progam impacts students and families by interviwing families in the home, something that I enjoyed very much. 

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Tige and Daniel - Mobile Uploads | Facebook

Tige and Daniel - Mobile Uploads | Facebook | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Tige and Daniel posted this photo on 2013-11-26. 4233587 likes. 64703 comments. 103050 shares.
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

I think that this is a perfect example of an educator teaching to the "whole child." Internet safety is very important. In order for a student to suceed in the future they need to be conscious about what they put on the internet. I see many of my peers put things on the internet that would not look good to future employers.  I think it is important that teachers prepare students not only academically but also socially for the future. Growing up with technology, I wish that my generation was taught to be conscious of what we upload and how we present ourselves on the internet. Once It is put out there it can not be taken back and because of that there leaves little opportunity for second chances. When thinking about teaching to the "whole child" I did not consider internet safety, now I strongly believe that it should be taught to all students. 

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Tips For Teaching With The Whole Child Approach

Tips For Teaching With The Whole Child Approach | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Byrne Creek Community Secondary School, in Burnaby, British Columbia, is a working model of what a whole child approach to education looks like. With a compreh(...)
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

In my opinion, the article gave great insight on how to approach teaching to the "whole child" by considering Maslow's hierarchy of needs and recognizing the "many crucial aspects of a child's growth and development." I liked that the article mentioned the physiological needs of students. Previously, when thinking about teaching, I have not given a lot of thought on meeting  the physiological needs of students. When I think about my experiences in school when I was younger, I can remember days when I could not concentrate because I was hungry and uncomfortable. I think as a future educator it is necessary to recognize all of the needs of students and discover ways to met them all. When the article comments on Maslow's hierarchy of need safety, it gives an example of how the need is met at New City school, where they "directly teach students how to work with others, how to manage conflict, and how to give feedback." When I think of what it means to teach to the "whole child" I think of teaching students how to work as a community, effectively communicate, and work through conflict. The example provided confirmed that I am on the right track when contemplating what it means to teach to the "whole child" and which needs of students other than academic needs should be met. 

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ASCD Whole Child Initiative

ASCD Whole Child Initiative | EDCI 280 | Scoop.it
Founded in 1943, ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) is an educational leadership organization dedicated to advancing best practices and policies for the success of each learner.
Mikynsi Steffan's insight:

In my opinion, the whole child approach is one of the  greatest initiatives our education system has ever had. I think that in order to fully prepare students for the future, education can not primarily focus on academics but needs to focus on all aspects of life. I think the the reason I am so strongly for the "whole child" approach is because of my personal experience as a student. I was never confident in learning and I never wanted to go to school. I did not perform well in high school and I did not realize my potential until I enrolled in community college. I think that if the "whole child" approach was implemented in education when I was a young student I would have felt more confident in learning and would have been more concsious of my future. The "whole child" approach to teaching is the reason I am passionate in becoming a teacher, I want to facilitate learning in ways that ensure students are confident in learning and recognize the value of education. I think that the only way to do so is to ensure that every student is "healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged." 

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