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Making a Difference

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Hello all! I hope everyone is having a great week and getting ready for Halloween! Anybody have any good costumes? I think I'm going to be a Patriots player. We need more representation out here!

Today I wanted to talk about the English lessons I'm giving. I have been working with SWAP, which is the Student Worker Alliance Program, here on campus. The program gives students the resources to teach English to CU Boulder employees, most of whom speak mainly Spanish. I have been working with one of the most dedicated and excited people ever, whose name is Arturo, for about a week now, and it is just an amazing experience. The first day, we spent the entire time getting to know eachother, and I asked him why he had signed up to take English classes, and what he said struck me. He has a wife and three children, all of whom speak English. Because his children are all older and have been in the Boulder Public School system for years now, they are using their Spanish less and less. For Arturo, this means that he isn't able to talk to his children as he used to be able to. He told me that he would say things, such as cierra la puerta, which means "close the door", and his children will have no idea what he is saying. This kind of situation really confused me, since it wasn't something that I had ever experienced before. Sure, I have lived with host families that don't speak my language, but we made that work (mostly by using Google...), and I also have friends that don't speak English as their first language, but, like I said before, we make it work. I can't imagine how hard it must be. That being said, I am so much more motivated to help Arturo learn English, and he is just as motivated! He's always asking for more homework, which is strange because I don't know a single person who would ask for more homework! I'm really glad that he's taking so much initiative to learn English, and I know that before the semester ends, he will be able to talk to his kids way more than he does now!

Other than that, Homecoming is super close! I'm getting really excited, especially for the parade. Everyone should come out and watch it! It's at 9 am on November 3rd on University Hill! Look for the Equestrian float, it's going to be the best!

That's all for now! Have a great week and stay warm!

Julia
Italian • Boston, MA

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